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$2 million through Growing Forward 2 to help Calgary food processors

posted Jul 14, 2017, 11:49 AM by Action for Agriculture

The Village Brewing Co. is one of five Calgary food processors growing their businesses thanks to government grants. 

The federal and provincial governments are providing nearly $2 million through Growing Forward 2 to help Calgary food processors expand capacity and improve efficiency so they can grow their businesses. 

Federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Lawrence MacAulay and Alberta Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Oneil Carlier made the announcement at the Village Brewing Co. which has received over $104,000 through the Growing Forward 2 initiative. The funding has allowed the business to add a canning line and centrifuge to its craft brewery.

“Agri-business is a key driver of growth in the Canadian economy and a source of well-paying jobs for the middle class. Our government is proud to support these innovative projects that will support Canadian farmers and the broader supply chain through their increased production of value-added agri-food.”

Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

These investments help achieve the government's plan to create good jobs in food processing and help food processors develop products that reflect changing market tastes and new opportunities.

“The continued growth and success of our agriculture sector is built on its diversity. Alberta offers a wide range of high-quality products and we are helping get those goods from farm to table by supporting the growth and development of Alberta’s food processors, as they create new products and new markets for their products.”

Oneil Carlier, Minister of Agriculture and Forestry

“This funding helps us continue to invest in growing our company by significantly improving our brewing operations. In particular, the funding helped us purchase the first centrifuge in Alberta, which will allow us to produce beer that is more consistent and stable. Funding also went towards a new canning line which was purchased from a Calgary manufacturer, which will allow us to add new products to our portfolio.”

Stephen Anderchek, business manager, Village Brewing Co.

Last year, Alberta’s value-added sector, including food and processing manufacturing sales, was worth $14.6 billion and was the largest manufacturing employer in the province, representing more than 22,400 jobs.

Four other agri-food processors in Calgary will also benefit from Growing Forward 2 grants:

  • CadCan Marketing & Sales Inc. – to purchase equipment to develop a gluten-free pellet formula for its air-puffed, low-fat and gluten-free snack products.
  • H. Hein Foods – to implement new equipment to improve efficiency, expand capacity to meet increased demand and diversify production for poultry, beef and pork products.
  • Just BioFiber Structural Solutions – to purchase and install a commercial-scale plant to turn hemp stalks into building material.
  • Basha International Foods Inc. – two grants to increase its processing capacity.

The Growing Forward 2 initiative is a federal-provincial-territorial partnership that provides programs and services to drive an innovative, competitive and profitable Canadian agriculture and agri-foods sector. In the past five years, Growing Forward 2 has invested more than $406 million in Alberta’s agricultural sector.