Great Lakes Growers Expands Its Production Capacity For “Living” Lettuces And Herbs

Great Lakes Growers ExpansionIt was just four years ago when Tim Ryan and John Bonner first built their modest 300-square-foot greenhouse, marking the start of what has become one of the most popular lettuce and herb operations in the region. And now, Great Lakes Growers in Burton, OH, has announced the addition of another 25,000 square feet to its operation, bringing its total facility size to 85,000 square feet.

An ever-expanding customer base motivated Great Lakes Growers to make this significant investment in its future.

While many operations might be content with the status quo, Great Lakes has continued to grow over the years, with its newest addition enabling it to double unit capacity.

“Keeping up with consumer demand has really driven us to make this significant investment in our future. Our retail customer base is expanding daily, and we want to help them meet the demands of their customers. Increasing our physical footprint is a win-win situation, for sure,” says Great Lakes Growers co-founder Tim Ryan.

The 25,000 square-foot expansion at Great Lakes Growers helps them stay one step ahead of consumer demand, while at the same time spearheading new product offerings.

Beyond customer demand, another driving force to Great Lakes’ expansion was the simple realization that different plants require different growing environments.

“To maintain our high quality standards, we needed to make sure our plants were grown in the optimal environment,” Bonner says. “Some varieties of lettuce produce larger, higher-quality yields when exposed to different light intensities. Some herbs grow stronger and more quickly with lower humidity levels. There’s a constant balance we need to maintain, and our new facilities will allow us to provide that kind of individual attention to our plants, which will ultimately deliver a better product for our customers.”

Another area of growth for Great Lakes that will come as the result of its expansion is job growth. Since opening in 2011, Great Lakes has consistently added staff each year, with this newest initiative expected to increase full-time equivalents by nearly 70%.

Great Lakes Growers will now be able to supply Northeast Ohio grocers, wholesalers, and restaurants with nearly 3 million heads of lettuce a year.

“While we’re thrilled to be able to respond to customer demands for more products and a broader spectrum of products, we’re also very proud of the opportunity to hire additional staff from the local area that will help support the economics of our community,” Bonner says.

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

More From Business Management...

May 23, 2017

USDA-APHIS Bulletin on Unauthorized Distribution of Genetically Engineered Petunias

On May 2, 2017, USDA-APHIS was informed that an orange petunia variety was potentially genetically engineered and had been imported and moved interstate without required authorization by APHIS. This led to testing of numerous petunia varieties, which confirmed this particular variety and several others are genetically engineered, and meet the regulatory definition of a regulated article under APHIS regulations. APHIS continues to work with the industry to ensure unauthorized GE petunias are not distributed in the United States.

Read More

May 23, 2017

6 Simple Ways to Acquire New Customers

Even the most successful brands need new customers if they want to grow their business, or stay profitable.

Read More
Dr. P. Allen Hammer, Dummen Orange

May 22, 2017

New Dümmen Orange Scholarship Honors Legacy of Dr. P. Allen Hammer

“Our industry’s future depends on attracting and supporting bright, hard-working students into horticulture programs across North America, and the support of Dümmen Orange will aid that effort,” Hammer says.

Read More
Latest Stories

May 23, 2017

USDA-APHIS Bulletin on Unauthorized Distribution of Gen…

On May 2, 2017, USDA-APHIS was informed that an orange petunia variety was potentially genetically engineered and had been imported and moved interstate without required authorization by APHIS. This led to testing of numerous petunia varieties, which confirmed this particular variety and several others are genetically engineered, and meet the regulatory definition of a regulated article under APHIS regulations. APHIS continues to work with the industry to ensure unauthorized GE petunias are not distributed in the United States.

Read More

May 23, 2017

6 Simple Ways to Acquire New Customers

Even the most successful brands need new customers if they want to grow their business, or stay profitable.

Read More
Dr. P. Allen Hammer, Dummen Orange

May 22, 2017

New Dümmen Orange Scholarship Honors Legacy of Dr. P. A…

“Our industry’s future depends on attracting and supporting bright, hard-working students into horticulture programs across North America, and the support of Dümmen Orange will aid that effort,” Hammer says.

Read More
The Greenhouse and Hoophouse growers handbook

May 19, 2017

New Book Highlights the Benefits of Growing Vegetables …

Andrew Mefferd’s new book, “The Greenhouse and Hoophouse Grower’s Handbook: Organic Vegetable Production Using Protected Culture,” covers the many benefits of protected culture food production, from being first to market, to more effective pest control.

Read More
MedMen New Facility

May 18, 2017

MedMen Cannabis Production Facility in Nevada Nearly Co…

Construction is expected to be completed this summer on the facility, which will include a 26,000-square-foot greenhouse and a 19,000-square-foot extraction and production wing.

Read More
New Frontier Cannabis Industry Annual Report

May 18, 2017

New Frontier Publishes Annual Report on the Cannabis In…

The 2017 Cannabis Industry Annual Report provides an up-to-date perspective on the growth and transformation of the legal cannabis industry, and what it means for each segment of the market, including producers.

Read More
ISO Cutting Machine

May 16, 2017

The Top 100 Growers are Investing in More Technology to…

Labor has traditionally been among growers’ most significant costs, but the continued rising costs and lack of available labor are currently two very heavy burdens that growers have to bear. As the labor supply dwindles, the Top 100 Growers discuss their next steps toward investing in technology to streamline efficiency at their respective operations.

Read More
Flores El Capiro, AIPH Grower of the Year 2017

May 16, 2017

Entries Now Open for International Grower of the Year A…

The International Association of Horticultural Producers’ International Grower of the Year Awards, sponsored by Royal Flora Holland, will take place at IPM Essen 2018 in Essen, Germany.

Read More
Cannabis Crop Protection

May 14, 2017

2017 Cannabis Regulatory Outlook: A Game of Wait and Se…

Medical and adult use legalization measures are on the legislative agenda in a total of 37 states in 2017 — and there's a sentiment gaining steam that the new administration may not be so scary after all.

Read More
2016 Top 100 Growers List

May 12, 2017

How the Top 100 Greenhouse Growers Tackle Managing Cost…

The country’s largest growers continue to strive to maintain a balance with price and costs while making sure they stand out from the competition.

Read More
Robert O'Neill

May 11, 2017

Former SEAL Team Six Leader to Address Attendees at IGC…

Robert O’Neill is a highly decorated combat veterans and the author of the just-published memoir, “The Operator: Firing the Shots That Killed Osama bin Laden and My Years as a SEAL Team Warrior.”

Read More

May 8, 2017

Greenhouse Grower Top 100 Behind the Scenes: How (and W…

It’s more important than ever to have good data that allows us to accurately measure the size and scope of our industry.

Read More
2016 Top 100 Growers List

May 8, 2017

2017 Greenhouse Grower Top 100 Growers: The Complete Li…

Growth signifies a healthy industry, and indeed, several of Greenhouse Grower’s Top 100 Growers expanded their operations significantly between 2016 and 2017.

Read More
Garrett Owen Feature Image

May 7, 2017

Garrett Owen Joins Michigan State University Floricultu…

Owen was hired in January 2017 with an Extension and research appointment in floriculture and greenhouse production.

Read More
Bailey Endless Summer Pandora Station

May 4, 2017

A Unique Marketing Campaign: Endless Summer Partners Wi…

Consumers can tune into the “Artists Rebloomed” station on Pandora to find hit songs from musical artists who have “rebloomed” and reinvented themselves throughout the years.

Read More
Bees at Bell Nursery - feature

May 3, 2017

Find Out What Bell Nursery Learned About Bees While Kee…

In spring 2014, Bell Nursery stopped using neonicotinoids to find out how it would impact production. Then the operation began keeping bees to learn more.

Read More
Biocontrols and beneficials absolutely can be used in outdoor production, with the use of banker plant systems

May 2, 2017

Michigan State Offering Summer Courses on Biocontrols a…

Registration for the courses, which take place online and provide detailed information on biocontrols and lighting in the greenhouse, is now open.

Read More
Farmers Roundtable for Web

May 2, 2017

Willoway Nurseries’ Tom Demaline Participates in Presid…

Joining other members of the agriculture community, Demaline provided insights on the importance of a reliable guest worker program and offered the greenhouse industry as a resource for the new administration.

Read More