WINNIPEG, MANITOBA, CANADA — Richardson Oilseed Limited, one of the largest canola oil processors in North America, announced on March 20 its intention to expand its canola processing plant in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada, which will more than double processing capacity at the facility. 

Richardson currently processes approximately 1,200 tonnes of canola per day or 410,000 tonnes per year out of its Lethbridge plant. The expansion will also enhance efficiencies at the facility through upgraded technology and increased automation.

“Global demand for canola and canola oil continues to increase due to strong consumer demand for healthier food products,” said Pat Van Osch, senior vice-president, Richardson Oilseed. “We are committed to making a significant investment in our Lethbridge plant to keep pace with increased demand and continue to grow our business.”

Over the next eight months, Richardson will finalize the scope, design and costs of the Lethbridge expansion project to begin construction in early 2014 and target completion by the end of 2015. Last year, Richardson completed a C$15 million expansion at its canola packaging plant in Lethbridge, increasing the size of the facility by 40%.

Richardson is currently in the midst of another expansion project at its other canola processing plant in Yorkton, Saskatchewan, Canada. The company is increasing crushing capacity in Yorkton by 25%, which will grow volumes from 2,400 tonnes of canola per day to 3,000 tonnes per day. The Yorkton project is on track to be complete by the end of 2013.

“With increased capacity at two state-of-the-art canola processing plants and strong origination capabilities through our expanding Richardson Pioneer network, we will be well positioned to service our customers and meet the needs of the global marketplace,” said Van Osch. “We are focused on expanding our presence as the leader in the Canadian canola processing industry.”