Crops & Vegetables




How much energy can be saved in post-harvest practices for vegetables?

The charts below show areas of operation where vegetable farms tend to have the highest direct energy use. Note that many vegetable farms have high indirect energy costs from the production and application of fertilizers. These charts represent direct energy uses for two general types of vegetable farms: those with more perishable produce that use refrigeration and do not use packing lines, and those that use packing lines (e.g., for onions and potatoes) and do not need as substantial cooling if any.

Farms with refrigeration:
Percent Annual Electric Use (Range)

  • Lighting 10-30% 30% 30%
  • Ventilation 5-15% 15% 15%
  • Well Pumps 1-6% 6% 6%
  • Compressed Air 1-3% 3% 3%
  • Refrigeration 10-30% 30% 30%

Farms with packing lines:
Percent Annual Electric Use (Range)

  • Lighting 10-30% 30% 30%
  • Ventilation 5-15% 15% 15%
  • Well Pumps 1-6% 6% 6%
  • Compressed Air 1-6% 6% 6%
  • Line Motors 10-30% 30% 30%

Energy Saving Measures for Vegetable Farms in New York State

Vegetables icon

The Crops & Vegetable sector includes single item farms such as onions and potatoes as well as multi-product farms growing vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, cabbages, green peas, snap beans, squash, sweet corn and more.


The following measures are considered best practices for vegetable farms, and some may apply to your farm. These technologies and techniques can reduce energy use while maintaining or improving productivity, and some measures can qualify for incentives and rebates. Explore the subject areas linked to below or by downloading fact sheets about them. If you are interested in more detailed information or support, sign up for a free energy assessment or contact us for general support.

Ventilation Fan


You need a good ventilation system that can help you move air in and out of the product storage areas on your farm. But you also need systems that are reliable and will save energy. 

Display freezer on a farm


You need a refrigeration system to store produce for a short amount of time until you are ready for distribution. For small or big cooling systems, there is a range of energy efficiency measures that can improve performance and save money.

Anonymous female farmers harvesting vegetables from field, stock photo by Zen Chung from Pexels.

General Operations

You can download an energy-efficiency factsheet about general operations on vegetable farms, which includes the information on this webpage along with a summary table.