OGVG KTT Webinars

by Nathan Couvillon
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These sessions are not affiliated to the Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers (OGVG) nor its directors, officers, employees, agents and affiliates. The OGVG will be held harmless from all claims, demands, actions, suits, damages, liabilities, losses, settlements, judgments, costs and expenses (including but not limited to reasonable attorney’s fees and costs), whether or not involving a third party claim, which arise out of or relate to any act or omission of this training.

Upcoming KTT Webinars:



Previous Webinars:

Growing Need for Accessible Data In A Digital World

OGVG has invited Minos Athanassiadis, Vice President at iFoodDS, to discuss how using technology to manage critical data is key to any successful operation across the food supply chain. He will speak in depth on how technology and data can strengthen operational efficiencies and give you insights to make strategic business decisions.

PAS Program Overview Session with Crop Life. Session 1/4

This first session is presented by Justine Taylor, Director of Stewardship and Sustainability with Crop Life Canada who gives a general overview of the PAS program, why it has been implemented, ensures an understanding of what is required for certification, discusses timelines, how to access supporting documents, and so on.

Export Development Canada

OGVG has invited Kyle Fratarcangeli, Sr. Account Manager with Export Development Canada (EDC) to discuss Canada’s Export Credit Agency and its Solutions on Knowledge, Financing, Bonding, and Insurance.

Strategically Leveraging Renewable Energies to Maximize Process Efficiency

OGVG has invited Bill Gioskos, Account Executive with VadimUS, to give an overview of their Vadimap solution, an innovative, proprietary turnkey solution for farms seeking to realize renewable energy projects within their facilities. They will walk through their 5-step on-line process – NSGE to understand how new technologies are applied, as well as a prescription report detailing concept solutions to understand how it may integrate with farm/greenhouse operations.

Taking Control of Your Electricity Bill

OGVG has invited Daniel Josling, Business Relations Manager with Aladaco, and Taylor Wilson, Technical Lead with Aladaco to help membership save on electricity costs by discussing the following:

  • Hydro Billing 101 – Review of the key line items on your hydro bill
  • Industrial Conservation Initiative
    • What is “Global Adjustment” (GA)
    • Different GA rate classes
    • Class A Eligibility
  • Electricity, the new input cost
    • The impact of electricity costs on the bottom line
    • Maximizing the benefits of Class A
    • Which class to choose?

Provision Analytics Webinar

Changes in food safety schemes such as CanadaGAP mean that audits happen with less notice, and with many more records required, including complex requirements for non-conformities, supplier management, and traceability. Greenhouse vegetable growers have been forced to invest more money and time into certification. New tools are needed to make this easier, faster, and more affordable.

Panelists Jody Mott, Executive director of the Holland Marsh Growers Association, Chair of The Industry Standards and Food Safety Committee for the CHC and Vice-chair of the Vegetable Working Group, as well as director for the CanadaGAP Program, Pius Gasser, Food Safety Management, Training and Implementation with GCP Consulting, Mike Meinhardt, EVP of sales for Provision Analytics, Kevin Davies, CMO at Provision Analytics, and Jacqueline Wachholz, Food Safety Consultant at GCP Consulting unpack the top 5 causes of poor compliance for producers as well as demonstrate their solution to them in Provision Analytics.

Autonomous Growing with Blue Radix 

Ronald Hoek (Cheif Executive Officer) and Rudolf de Vetten (Cheif Product Officer) at Blue Radix to talk about the award-winning GCII cost-sharing ‘Autonomous Growing’ in Ontario project with OGVG. Ontario greenhouse grower Michael Del Ciancio, grower and owner at DC farms and OGVG board member talks about firsthand experience and learnings of starting with Crop Controller, the importance of data collection and AI in the future of growing.

Rugose Vaccine Webinar with A&L Labs

OGVG invites Keri Wang and Greg Patterson to discuss A&L’s progress on a Tomato Brown Rugose Fruit Virus (ToBRFV) vaccine, a search for trials, as well as work being done for a vaccine against Cucumber Green Mottle Mosaic Virus (CGMMV).

CO2 Delivery Solutions Webinar

OGVG invites Sarosh Bharucha from CO2 GRO to discuss a new method of CO2 delivery to plants for increased yield at lower production cost by delivering dissolved CO2 through irrigation systems.

BESS (Battery Energy Storage System) Webinar with BW Solar

OGVG invites Alex Simakov to talk about BW Solar as well as give an overview of the proposed Leamington BESS (Battery Energy Storage System), project status, and what this would mean for Ratepayer savings.

Electric Boilers Webinar

Presented by Jordan Kearns from Medley Thermal to discuss Dynamic Electrification – A Solution for Reducing Boiler Energy Costs and Emissions.

Jordan Kearns (Founder and CEO of Medley Thermal) will present on their projects to dynamically electrify boiler loads. Dynamic electrification hybridizes combustion boiler systems by installing a new electric boiler in parallel with a facility’s existing combustion boilers. In Ontario, these hybrid systems can reduce boiler energy costs by 25% and electrify boiler load 60-80% of the time but rely on the existing gas boilers to carry the heating load during periods of high electricity cost. The projects further reduce exposure to increasing carbon prices and the additional electric load can help facilities qualify for Class A designation.

Medley Thermal is currently developing projects in Ontario for commercial and industrial applications and is looking for partners to demonstrate the technology in the greenhouse sector.

Clean Out Webinar – Andrew Wylie (OMAFRA) and Ana Pastrana (Vineland Research and Innovation Centre)

A proper greenhouse clean-out is essential to your success next year. Join OMAFRA’s Dr. Andrew C. Wylie and Vineland Research & Innovation Centre’s Dr. Ana Pastrana as they discuss the principles of greenhouse sanitation and clean-out, including structures and irrigation, as well as different types of disinfectants, how to use them for maximum effect, and a tool that you can use to ensure you’re choosing the right disinfectants for your operation.

Greenhouse Cybersecurity 

In this webinar, Dr. Mitra Mirhassani, Dr. Ikjot Saini, and Tom Schnekenburger from the University of Windsor give an introduction on why the greenhouse sector should start to take proactive measures against increasing cybersecurity attacks.

The agricultural industry has been considered at low risk from cyberattacks for a long time. However, with the approach of Agriculture 4.0 (also known as smart farming), which points to grow food with the engagement of more effective, robotized machines; the sector has become vulnerable to cyber-attacks.

The smart farming acquisition can provide food production proficiency upgrades, monitor crops, and control farm activities. As the population keeps on developing, there would be a requirement for more food in the coming time. By the end of this decade, the world’s populace is evaluated to cross 8.5 billion with an objective of zero starvation by 2030. To catch up with the demands, increasingly, farms and food-handling plants are embracing modern technologies to streamline production and coordinate with supply chain services. Hence, smart farming is gaining escalating momentum than ever. However, the advancement of smart farming can unravel the existing problems but brings in new security issues.

Battling cybercrime has always been challenging. One of the reasons could be because cybercriminals continually change the devices of their operation and the mode of data encryption. Recently, farming was prompted by the danger of cyberattacking. On 21st September 2021, New Cooperative in Fort Dodge, Iowa, affirmed that it had been hit with a ransomware attack that influenced the grain cooperative’s operations, which incorporate 60 elevator locations over north-central and western Iowa. Moreover, agriculture was officially listed as one of the critical sectors by the Department of Homeland Security, US.

Following the mentioned event, on 23rd September 2021, Minnesota agricultural firm Crystal Valley Cooperative confirmed that it had been targeted in a ransomware attack. This makes Crystal Valley the second Midwestern farm-services provider been targeted by cybercriminals. Ransomware attacks against farm services providers New Cooperative and Crystal Valley underlined the requirement for extra safety actions in the community. These events set an example that the agriculture sector can no longer be considered at low cyber risk. The other sectors have developed their intelligence sharing networks which they can leverage to make informed timely decisions regarding cyber risks. The critical sectors are the target of ransomware gangs of which the food and agriculture sector is one. The sector is exposed to a broad range of cybersecurity challenges due to the unavailability of mandatory cybersecurity rules and increasing digitization and automation.

The selection of smart farming innovation is the most recent approach to drive farming proficiency and revenue. Although cyberattacks won’t likely cause massive issues, they can be a caution sign. The cyber risk has increased as agriculture gets to be progressively digitally interconnected with the country’s food supply chains. The potential complexities of cyberattacks are still of concern and must be fathomed and mitigated. The initial steps should be the stakeholder awareness of cybersecurity to instill a culture of security and the next step should be the integration of cyber risk management in their organizational strategy.

Microbial Inoculants Webinar

In this webinar, Danielle Rose from Ceragen Grow talks about everything you need to know about evaluating and testing microbial inoculants for use in hydroponic systems. This will include what to look for in a microbial product and how to set up your own in-farm tests to evaluate performance.

Watch the recording here: https://youtu.be/9GklTFpBXKs

Fluence Webinar #4 – Utility Rebates: Navigating the Process in Ontario

Did you know that many utility companies offer rebates as an incentive to commercial customers for upgrading to more energy-efficient lighting? To date, Fluence has helped growers in North America secure over $14 million in utility rebates by using energy-efficient LEDs. Historically, the initial cost of acquiring LED lighting solutions has been the main barrier to entry in purchasing these products, but today, there are utility rebates available in the Ontario market that provide significant savings to those growers looking to upgrade their operations making the up-front cost a little easier to justify.

During this webinar, Ontario utility provider, Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) alongside Fluence Utility Rebate Coordinator, Brady Nemeth will cover how local rebates and incentives can help offset the cost of installing energy-efficient LED lighting, in addition to the operational savings recognized through lower utility and maintenance costs. They will also provide helpful insights on how to navigate the world of utility rebates to ensure that Ontario growers can maximize growth and improve crop quality while decreasing total costs. This webinar is intended for greenhouse growers looking to transition from HPS to LED, or new farms in the planning phase.

Watch the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8FTGUiy2to

Overcoming Software Needs and Challenges

This presentation will help you develop an understanding of your greenhouse software needs and establish a framework for evaluating categories of software to meet those needs. We will provide tools to help identify current and future operational challenges, how your current software solves these challenges, and which components are missing from your technology stack. The lens we look through when evaluating software is how it can benefit your plants, people, and profit. You’ll walk away from this presentation with the knowledge of how to evaluate software for your operation, how to vet providers, and you’ll take home tools that will aid you in evolving your technology stack now and in the future.

Watch the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GfhKAeqroXE

Fluence Webinar #3 – Insect Activity and Management Under Different Light Spectra

Insects play a vital role in farms all over the world. Whether you’re growing in a greenhouse or sole-source indoor facility, the type of insects found in your farm can be beneficial or detrimental to your crops’ growth and development. Each insect responds differently to the varieties of lighting spectra deployed in your growing environment. During this panel discussion, biological crop protection specialists and horticulture experts will weigh in with their practical findings and discuss key considerations for selecting the right light for your farm.

Watch the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hlJxjY2Teqc

Autonomous Electronic Nose (e-nose) Systems – Opportunities and Challenges

The development of highly sensitive diagnostic and monitoring tools that extends well beyond human senses and perception is an essential strategy for more cost-effective and practical health and environmental maintenance. Today, electronic nose (e-nose) systems are being investigated as a candidate technology that transfers benefits of micromachining, integration, and artificial intelligence to the fields of medicine (e.g., lung cancer detection) and environmental monitoring (e.g., early pre-emptive intervention in agricultural product). This project focuses on investigating opportunities and challenges of a new e-nose system that enables early-stage and autonomous detection of invasive forces, threats and pests present in a commercial greenhouse.

Watch the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JssFZisk0L0

UWin Greenerhouse™ Transient Energy Model Webinar

Energy is a significant cost for many OGVG members. This is unlikely to change in the near future; particularly as the demand for increased automation and year-round production grows. A new project aims to deliver near-term, palpable, cost savings measures; and will evaluate the potential of advanced ideas that could revolutionize greenhouse energy systems and operation.

The established UWin Greenerhouse™ transient energy model will deliver immediate impact once applied to parameterized problems of greenhouse thermal energy optimization. This value will further increase with the planned integration of electrical energy modeling into Greenerhouse™. This will provide critical insights into cost/benefit analyses that will be executed by growers looking to expand their growing season with different lighting technologies. The model will also enable growers to quantitatively visualize the integration of renewable energy and energy storage technologies to reduce costs and mitigate environmental footprints.

Beyond this, the project will thrust stakeholders to the leading edge of new energy architectures and energy markets. The planned energy community microgrid design will illustrate a series of potential layouts of inter-connected greenhouse operations. This will give a window into how current and future operations could benefit from buying or selling energy directly and locally, to other greenhouses, and/or different complementary stakeholders. Such architectures will increase supply resiliency and energy procurement options for growers. Insights into this growing, secure, and lean market mechanism could reveal opportunities for improved energy cost, security, and autonomy. It will also ensure the industry is not caught flat-footed should the realization of peer-to-peer energy transactions advance more rapidly than expected.

Watch the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFyKZEtnMV8

Biogeochemical Controls Influencing Elements In Local Retention Ponds

The focus of this study was to evaluate the biogeochemical controls influencing nutrient and metal concentrations in stormwater greenhouse retention ponds for the Municipality of Leamington. This information will be used to inform best management practices pertaining to pond maintenance. Currently, retention ponds are subject to regular ministry testing, due to concerns of elevated metal/nutrient concentrations, specifically phosphorus, nitrogen and zinc. To better understand the biogeochemical processes contributing to the water quality and to develop adaptive management plans for these ponds, nutrient and trace metal concentrations in both water and sediments were evaluated for 14 ponds, beginning in July of 2018 through July and Fall 2019. Based on grower operation and historical data several ponds were identified based on legacy nutrient data, pond age, size, and other former modifications (e.g. dredging).

Watch the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1OloCpZzKI

Ecoation Webinar: Demystifying AI & Robotics in Agriculture: Common Misconceptions & Misinformation

Not a day goes by where we don’t hear about how AI and robotics are going to change the horticulture industry and almost every month a new offering is introduced to the market. The ideas and possibilities are quite intriguing yet various misconceptions and misunderstandings force people to either completely avoid these new technologies out of fear or adopt enthusiastically only to get very disappointed after they find out the reality of the product is far from the hopes and dreams they had for it. Both are equally negative outcomes and deter people from using new technology that can help them and their farm.

In this talk, Dr. Saber Miresmailli addresses some of these misconceptions, both negatives, and positives, and brings a bit of reality into the mystery to help growers make a more informed decision when they choose their AI and robotic solution.

Watch the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKeh5_j7b8Y

360Energy Webinar: Cost Management Through Greenhouse Automation

David Arkell from 360Energy presents Greenhouse Energy Monitoring: As growers look to the future, they have several compelling reasons to consider greenhouse energy monitoring solutions. One of the most common is the desire to reduce overall operational costs by potentially increasing efficiency and productivity. With this knowledge, you learn how to take action of monitoring through data and automation intelligence to improve electricity and water costs as well as lower your fuel consumption.

Watch the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBCwIvg2lRI

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