With six commercial greenhouses and plans in the future for a seventh, Thanet Earth is a large company with the entire nation at heart. The business was born in 2005 amid a worrying decline in UK-grown salad greens. Growers in Spain and Holland were taking over the market and the local industry was suffering as a result.
Thanet Earth grows all of its plants in closed-loop hydroponic systems, eliminating run-off waste. While the clear rooftops allow for plenty of natural light, British winters call for some extra help and artificial lighting is used as a result.
Each glasshouse is also a power station using Combined Heat and Power generators. This setup provides the electricity to light and heat the entire business and also provides power to the local grid; enough for approximately 50,000 homes!
Reservoirs collect rainwater and condensation produced in the glasshouses, and a UK variety of bumblebee is released into the environment to pollinate the tomatoes. Today, Thanet Earth grows an astounding 400 million tomatoes a year, along with 30 million cucumbers, and 24 million standard and speciality peppers.
The company distributes surplus produce to the larger community and also runs school programmes to help educate youth.
They’ve come a long way since 2005.