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February 25, 2021

McCain Foods again backs vertical-farmer Goodleaf Farms

The frozen-food giant has again invested in a Canadian vertical-farming business, becoming the firm's largest shareholder in the process.

By Dean Best

McCain Foods has become the largest shareholder in TruLeaf Sustainable Agriculture and its wholly owned subsidiary GoodLeaf Farms, which the French fry giant describes as “Canada’s largest commercial vertical farming operation”.

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The food and grocery sector thrived during the pandemic, largely due to the shutdown of the food service industry and the sector’s subsequent necessity, panic-induced bulk purchasing, and spending more time at home. The market has grown as a result of inflation. Consumer unwillingness to go out and socialize, and the reopening of several hospitality facilities, helped maintain the demand for groceries, particularly online, in 2021. As consumer behavior changes, we consume more food and drink at home, and inflation increases basket sizes. GlobalData predicts that the sector will continue to hold a higher share than had been predicted prior to the pandemic. This is true despite the fact that the food and grocery sector's share of overall retail will decline from its peak in 2020. This report will discuss market forecasts and key themes in the global food & grocery industry in 2022 and beyond. It covers:
  • Market drivers and inhibitors
  • Five-year forecasts and the impact of COVID-19
  • The performance of the online channel versus offline
  • Major trends in the market including rapid delivery, ambient retailing, supply chain disruption, and inflation
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Three years on from McCain’s first investment in Truleaf, the frozen-food group has moved again to back the business and has now ploughed more than CAD65m (US$51.9m) into the firm, which runs a 45,000 square foot facility in Guelph, Ontario.

Peter Dawe, McCain’s chief growth and strategy officer, said the company wanted to help “scale up of this Canadian start up that lives at the intersection of food, agriculture and technology”. He added: “GoodLeaf’s vertical farm technology creates spring and summer growing conditions in Canada year-round, growing local, fresh, healthy and tasty leafy greens instead of being trucked long distances into Canada.”

The vertical farmer grows five microgreens and three baby greens for the domestic market. It is planning to set up to more farms by the end of the year to serve retail and foodservice customers in the east and west of Canada. Current retail customers include Loblaws and Whole Foods Market.

Barry Murchie, Goodleaf’s CEO, said: “”We want to be a global leader in vertical farming. Our first step to accomplishing that is ensuring we have a strong footprint in Canada, giving Canadians access to top quality, nutrient-dense, sustainably grown and pesticide-free leafy greens 365 days a year.”

just-food analysis, December 2020: What are the prospects for vertical farming in Europe?

Related Companies

Free Report
img

What’s the forecast for the food and grocery industry?

The food and grocery sector thrived during the pandemic, largely due to the shutdown of the food service industry and the sector’s subsequent necessity, panic-induced bulk purchasing, and spending more time at home. The market has grown as a result of inflation. Consumer unwillingness to go out and socialize, and the reopening of several hospitality facilities, helped maintain the demand for groceries, particularly online, in 2021. As consumer behavior changes, we consume more food and drink at home, and inflation increases basket sizes. GlobalData predicts that the sector will continue to hold a higher share than had been predicted prior to the pandemic. This is true despite the fact that the food and grocery sector's share of overall retail will decline from its peak in 2020. This report will discuss market forecasts and key themes in the global food & grocery industry in 2022 and beyond. It covers:
  • Market drivers and inhibitors
  • Five-year forecasts and the impact of COVID-19
  • The performance of the online channel versus offline
  • Major trends in the market including rapid delivery, ambient retailing, supply chain disruption, and inflation
Assess developments within this sector to help your business thrive in 2022 and beyond.
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Report.

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