REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN, CANADA — Viterra Inc. announced on March 24 two upgrades to its elevator network that will enhance its competitive position and drive further efficiencies in Western Canada's grain handling system.

Viterra will expand the storage of its North Battleford facility by 8,000 tonnes, bringing its overall capacity to 33,800 tonnes. At its Lloydminster elevator, Viterra plans to add 12,000 tonnes of storage for an overall capacity of 27,000 tonnes. The company will also increase its loading capability at Lloydminster, served by Canadian Pacific (CP), to 112 railcars from 56. Overall, 90% of Viterra's shipping capacity through its grain collection system operates with 50-100 car loaders.

"These upgrades illustrate Viterra's commitment to Saskatchewan agriculture, and are consistent with the company's strategy to invest in its infrastructure and optimize its elevator footprint in top grain producing regions to keep pace with growing demand for quality food ingredients worldwide. By investing in these storage and logistical improvements, we are able to accept and move higher volumes of grain, resulting in faster unloading times and cost savings for farmers," said Bob Miller, Viterra's senior vice-president, North American Grain.

Construction work at the facilities is expected to begin in spring 2011 and be completed by late fall 2011.