MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, US — Ceres Global Ag Corp.’s wholly owned subsidiary, Riverland Ag Corp., plans to create a grain merchandising joint venture with Farmer’s Co-op Grain and Seed Association (FCGS).

FCGS will contribute its existing grain elevator and related grain merchandising assets in Thief River Falls, Minnesota, US, to the joint venture, with Riverland contributing cash. The transaction is expected to close in January 2021. Following closing, the joint venture will undergo an expansion project designed to enable loading unit trains. 

“The formation of this joint venture marks a meaningful step in our broader strategy to increase core product origination directly from growers, including the Thief River Falls area in particular,” said Robert Day, president and chief executive officer of Ceres. “We look forward to partnering with the hundreds of growers who make up FCGS and working closely with the CP to efficiently market growers' products and create value for our downstream customers.”

The facility will be serviced by Canadian Pacific (CP) and FCGS will continue to operate its non-grain merchandising businesses independent of the operation of the joint venture.

“Adding storage and rail loading capabilities to our elevator in Thief River Falls is a critical step FCGS must take in order to maintain its market competitiveness, both for today and into the future,” said Darwin Klamar, president of FCGS’s board. “With Riverland’s expertise in managing railroad programs and providing destination market access, FCGS will be well positioned to serve the needs of its growers and patrons for decades to come.”

Ceres Global is headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, US, and, together with its affiliated companies, operates 13 locations across Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, and Minnesota. These facilities have an aggregate grain and oilseed storage capacity of approximately 30.8 million bushels.

Ceres Global has a 50% interest in Savage Riverport, LLC, a joint venture with Consolidated Grain and Barge Co., a 50% stake in Gateway Energy Terminal, a joint venture with Steel Reef Infrastructure Corp., a 25% interest in Stewart Southern Railway Inc., a short-line railway located in southeast Saskatchewan with a range of 130 kilometers, and a 17% interest in Canterra Seed Holdings Ltd, a Canada-based seed development company.

Established in 1940, FCGS provides a broad range of agricultural products and services, including grain merchandising and storage, agronomy services, seed products and trucking services. FCGS' patron base consists of over 400 growers across a three-county area.