In selecting a site and building in order to maximize profitability for the farm business you need to look at a number of factors.
Clearly the most suitable buildings will be south facing and un-shaded. The feed-in tariff will provide an income for every kilowatt-hour generated from the installation.
However there are many additional advantages. The panels can provide shading, reducing heat gain previously encountered from the existing roof. This can lead to a useful reduction in fan use for chicken houses etc.
Using the electricity on site is where the real profitability can lie. If your site has significant electricity use, particularly if this is during daylight hours, a solar installation can dramatically reduce your electricity bills. This can apply to chicken houses, milking parlours, process operations and especially any site with chillers/fridges and compressors.
On-farm light industrial units, if connected via a sub-meter, may well give you the opportunity to sell your PV generated electricity, perhaps offering tenants a reduced unit rate charge, and at the same time create an improved income stream.
Solar installations on new buildings in particular should be considered. The opportunity to install the solar panels at the same time as putting the roof on reduces installation costs providing even better returns on the project.
Since the extra profitability from use on site can be so significant we can undertake monitoring of your site to give you a comprehensive assessment of your available return on investment, including both feed-in tariff income and avoided electricity costs.
As always the greatest return is available if you can finance the installation yourself, though we of course can also arrange finance if required.