The village of Vanscoy saw a splash of the bright lights with the formal opening of Verdient Foods – celebrities included.
James Cameron, an Oscar-winning film direcor, along with his wife actress and author Suzy Amis Cameron invested tens of millions of dollars into the project, which is planned to be the largest organic pea protein fractionation facility of North America.
James Cameron says although the Verdient plant won’t begin as a solely organic plant, the potential is there to grow organic farming in the area.
“We’re talking about a capacity that far exceeds our ability to have organic feed stock coming in right now,” Cameron says. “I think it’s only three or four percent of the growers of yellow peas in the Province are 100% organic, but we see that as being an enormous growth market. We want to expand that organic wedge over time.”
Cameron says the decision to invest money into Saskatchewan Agriculture was relatively easy.
“Saskatchewan is very growth oriented. I think it’s got such a huge delta in terms of its potential, I think it’s got an enormous amount of very good soil, great arable land here. Some of the things that we want to do in the long term require scale. If we can prove the organic model at scale, and compete with the industrial model, this is the place to do it.”
The plant will begin operation on the first of October, and is expected to be fully operational six months after opening day.
The plant will also employ 40 new workers when fully operational.