The specialist fruit farm FG Pierce & Sons near Sevenoaks in Kent has dramatically cut the cost of keeping its fruit cool thanks to a major solar PV installation.

Local solar installer, M3 Solar, was approached by the farmer to install a solar PV array on the premises because the electrical output of an array perfectly matches the electricity demands of cold storage and, as an energy intensive user, investing in solar would allow the farm to significantly reduce its operating costs.

After assessing the site’s potential, M3 Solar mounted a 100kWp solar array on one of the farm’s main cold-storage buildings. The system is estimated to provide the farm with around 96,000kWh of clean electricity a year, slashing over 50 tonnes of CO2 a year from the farm’s overall carbon footprint.

The system consists of 408 Jinko modules partenered with four Eltek inverters. Each inverter runs at a peak 98% efficiency and provides the company with live data. Since the system was installed in August, the system has produced around 7MWh of electricity a month – covering approximately 10% of the farm’s base-load power requirements.

Utilising their own supply chain for the modules and mounting kit, M3 Solar worked closely with Hampshire-based Sibert Solar to ascertain the optimum system configuration and resultant supply of inverters and balance-of-system components required.