ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, US — Bunge Ltd. has made a $30 million capital investment in Merit Functional Foods, giving the ingredient supplier a minority interest in the Canadian-based company.
The partnership will expedite the construction of Merit’s plant-based protein facility in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, where it will produce novel pea and canola protein ingredients. The plant is expected to be fully operational by December and will be the first commercial-scale extraction facility capable of producing food-grade canola protein in the world, the companies said.
Bunge will use its expertise as one of the largest canola processors in Canada to supply Merit with critical inputs, said Ryan Bracken, co-chief executive officer of Merit Functional Foods.
“We’re excited to have a global partner like Bunge recognize our mission and assist us in accelerating our plans and path to launch,” Bracken said. “Bunge also holds a deep knowledge of international commodity markets which will help reinforce our canola business with customers globally.”
Merit’s portfolio of plant-based protein ingredients includes Peazazz and Peazac pea protein, three varieties of Puratein canola protein and MeritPro, a blend of pea and canola protein. The ingredients are non-GMO and contain 90% protein.