From a news release
Maple Leaf Foods Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiary, Greenleaf Foods, SPC, has announced plans to construct a US$310 million plant-based protein food processing facility in Shelbyville, Indiana.
At approximately 230,000 square feet, it will be the largest facility and investment of its kind in North America. The company will also invest approximately US$26 million to keep pace with ongoing growth in demand at its existing facilities. This strategic initiative will support Maple Leaf’s continued growth and leadership in the rapidly expanding market for plant-based protein.
“With Lightlife and Field Roast, we own the leading brands in the North American refrigerated plant-based protein market,” said Michael H. McCain, President and CEO. “This investment will secure our ongoing leadership in this rapidly expanding market. By establishing a large-scale North American network, we will continue to meet rapidly growing demand for delicious protein alternatives and create a centre of excellence for innovation. It will escalate the financial contribution of this business and advance Maple Leaf’s vision to be the most sustainable protein company on earth.”
The new Shelbyville facility will be supported by approximately US$50 million in government and utility grants and incentives, including US$9.6 million toward capital and one-time start-up costs, and approximately US$40 million in 10-year operational support. Maple Leaf expects to incur one-time start-up costs of US$34 million and will fund this strategic initiative through a combination of cash flow from operations and debt.
Plant-based proteins represent a US$1 billion North American market. Refrigerated products represent approximately 24% of the total market and delivered approximately 40% sales growth in 2018, significantly outpacing the broader category. High growth rates are expected to continue as people increasingly seek more protein in their diet and delicious options, and as innovation continues to increase product appeal and variety.
The new Shelbyville facility will be the largest and most modern of its kind in North America, solidifying Maple Leaf’s leadership in the fast-growing plant-based protein market. It will double the Company’s current production capacity and support a rich pipeline of innovation to meet increasing consumer demand and fuel market growth. The facility will produce tempeh, franks, sausages and raw foods. This includes the recently launched Lightlife™ Burger. The new facility will service customers across North America, expanding and complementing the company’s existing, extensive supply chain network.
Construction on the 57-acre property is expected to start in late spring of 2019, with production start-up expected in the fourth quarter of 2020.