AWS for Industries

How AWS and Lemongrass help Florida Crystals achieve their business and sustainability goals

Anybody with a sweet tooth has probably heard of brands like Domino and C&H in the U.S., Redpath in Canada, Tate & Lyle in the U.K., and Sidul in Portugal. All of these sugary packaged goods are made by the Florida Crystals Corporation, a vertically integrated farm-to-table sugar cane company based in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Besides being a top producer of cane sugar, Florida Crystals has earned a reputation as a pioneer in sustainability. “We’re the first U.S. brand to earn a distinctive regenerative organic status, using a process that improves the soil and the environment around it,” says Kevin Grayling, CIO at Florida Crystals. The company now has the distinction of owning the largest Regenerative Organic Certified™ (ROC) farm in the U.S. and being the first U.S.-grown sugar brand to earn the distinctive ROC™ status.

When consumers buy products from Florida Crystals, they can be sure their purchase makes a positive impact at every level: environmentally, ethically, and socially. What’s more, the packaged goods company has embraced sustainability in more than just its agricultural practices. For example, it recently had the opportunity to migrate its SAP enterprise resource planning systems from an on-premises data center to Amazon Web Services (AWS), a move that enabled it to shrink its carbon footprint while saving money.

“We always strive to be environmentally and socially conscious in our business decisions and moving from a hosted private cloud to the public cloud is consistent with this approach,” Grayling explains. “AWS’ profile for sustainability made it the perfect partner. These savings can be diverted to fund projects and innovation that benefit our customers, employees, and partners as well as the world we live in through our regenerative farming practices.”

Florida Crystals asked AWS Partner Lemongrass, to help with its migration to AWS. A software-enabled services provider, Lemongrass is a leader in the planning, migration, operation, and automation of SAP in the hyperscale cloud. “It was a natural fit to pick AWS and Lemongrass for this solution to our need,” says Corey Swenson, VP of ERP Transformation and Data Analytics at Florida Crystals.

Beginning in May 2021, Lemongrass worked with Florida Crystals to design and build a targeted environment and Landing Zone on AWS using best practice standards for running SAP on AWS. This initial step “proved that the solution was viable by migrating our development SAP environments to that landscape,” Swenson says. Next, Lemongrass helped the company migrate its core SAP S/4HANA system from its legacy data center to AWS, completing the move over a 36-hour weekend that minimized downtime and got operations back up and running quickly.

Lemongrass also set up monitoring, backups, and disaster recovery for Florida Crystals on AWS using its well-defined migration methodology. To support these capabilities, the company is now using multiple AWS services, including: Amazon CloudWatch, Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS), Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), Amazon Elastic Block Store (EBS), and CloudEndure.

Once SAP was up and running on AWS, the company was then able to consolidate its two other SAP environments, resulting in a single global instance. “Over the last 12 months, we have not only migrated away from our incumbent provider but we’ve consolidated those three environments into one,” Grayling says.

The move to AWS gave Florida Crystals other advantages, such as the ability to provide additional resource capacity and systems to support new business projects when needed. The company can also react more quickly to situations in its production environment, allowing the business to continue with minimal downtime. “In the end, this is what is important because we’re able to achieve our service excellence goals to our end customers,” Swenson says.

Watch this video and read the press release to learn more about how AWS and Lemongrass are helping Florida Crystals achieve their business and sustainability goals. Find how AWS can help CPG companies build brands that consumers love.

Learn about sustainability solutions for retail and CPG and read more customer success stories here.

AWS Partner spotlight

Lemongrass has built a business on providing solutions and technology that enterprises need to operationalize, analyze and transform into sustainable businesses. Lemongrass’ services accelerate AWS Cloud adoption and help companies reduce carbon emissions by eliminating on-premises footprints associated with power/cooling, hardware, and compute. An AWS Premier Partner with over 10 certifications on the AWS platform, Lemongrass helped hundreds of SAP customers migrate to AWS and has over 8,000 SAP servers and 400K+ users under management. Lemongrass has built a successful track record migrating and operating SAP on AWS for greater agility, scalability, and innovation.

Brady Prim

Brady Prim

Brady Prim is a Senior Partner Manager at the AWS Partner organization. Based in the Seattle area, he focuses on go-to-market strategy with System Integrators in North America. He is passionate about working with AWS Partners that are advancing cloud innovation and impacting customers worldwide. Outside of work, he remains on a constant quest to find the best cup of coffee in Seattle.