RICHARDSON, SASKATCHEWAN, CANADA — Richardson International has opened Bennett Farm, located roughly 10 kilometers southeast of Regina. The event was attended by more than 200 industry members with Richardson producer customers, suppliers and sponsors and government representatives welcoming the new facility to the agricultural landscape and touring its extensive demonstration grounds and the adjacent Richardson Pioneer divisional office.
“We are pleased to see this investment by Richardson International in Saskatchewan with the opening of Bennett Farm,” said Honourable David Marit, Minister of Agriculture for the province of Saskatchewan. “Research is vital to the continued success of the agriculture industry and to our goal of sustainably feeding a growing world population. Sites such as this are key in helping farmers adopt the most promising new products, equipment and crop varieties.”
With over C$15 million invested in the 600-acre site, Bennett Farm acts to complement the work done at Kelburn Farm, Richardson’s first research and demonstration farm situated in the Red River Valley of Manitoba. The geography of Saskatchewan is unique — comprising largely a brown soil zone — and allows for trialing crops not commonly grown in Manitoba such as peas, lentils and durum.
“We had a clear vision of what Bennett Farm could be,” said Curt Vossen, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of Richardson International. “The heart of our grain handling and merchandising business is Western Canada with a large proportion of our network in Saskatchewan. It is where many of our customers are. As a training center, a research center and a development center — and from a structural and relationship point of view — we felt it was important to have a presence here and in this category of applied activity.”
The initial ground breaking event was in the fall of 2015 and marked the start of a multi-phase construction project. The site was named for the Bennett family, who had owned the land since the 1940s and continue to farm across the highway.
In addition, Bennett Farm hosts Richardson Pioneer’s divisional office and has a CropWatch agronomy center and meeting room. The latter recently was entitled, “The Bruce Sobkow Centre for Education & Development” and was designed to be a place of learning and collaboration for Richardson employees, its suppliers and partners and the broader community in general.
A global company in agriculture and food processing, Richardson is a worldwide handler and merchandiser of all major Canadian-grown grains and oilseeds and is a vertically-integrated processor and manufacturer of oats and canola-based products. Richardson has more than 2,600 employees across Canada, the United States and the U.K.