Canadian crops don’t just stay in Canada – the fields of Saskatchewan and Alberta help to supply the entire world. As a leading processor and distributor of grains, pulses, oil seeds, and specialty crops, with distribution offices across Canada and into the Indian Sub Continent, Africa, Russia, Turkey, Australia, and Southeast Asia, Agrocorp is a leading force in providing Canadian farmers with a global reach.
Agrocorp has experienced considerable year over year growth –the business has made significant investments into expanding its reach in the last couple of years, especially in the construction of its new state-of-the-art pulse and special crop processing facility in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. “The merits of that facility have already been well recognized and are now creating a lot of buzz in the industry as a result of both with the efficiencies in turning our inventory and the quality of the product that we’re delivering into the market,” says Colin Topham, Managing Director at Agrocorp. “We have introduced some new cleaning technologies that have allowed for cleaning export quality at terminal speed. It’s a technology we’re looking to extrapolate in future expansion projects.”
Agrocorp will not have to wait long to take advantage of its technological advances – recently the business acquired another facility in Alberta and is looking forward to making upgrades that will enhance its abilities even further. “Although it’s an older facility, it is a very efficient facility and we’re currently engaging in modernization design work,” says Topham.
Improving From Within
In addition to improving its reach, output, and facilities, Agrocorp has turned its focus inward, putting energy into rounding out its staff to grow and improve its corporate capabilities. A critical benefit for the company has been its acquisition of a business process and SOP specialist, who has now moved to Moose Jaw to contribute her expertise full time after years of previous work with Agrocorp on a consulting basis. “Her entire focus has been on streamlining plant to trade connectivity, which extends to our global offices for communicating hedging and position reporting,” says Topham. “It’s been a big leap forward for us – we have three offices in Canada, and of course the many offices overseas, and communication between all offices is paramount for being able to navigate trade risk. So the improvements and the mechanisms that are now being put in place have enabled us to trade on more solid footing.”
Agrocorp has also taken the opportunity to solidify the business’s core values, an important factor for multinationals that must maintain an even level of customer care and service across countries and continents. “We originally were a family business, and have adhered to the same principles that have driven our business forward” says Topham, explaining the meaning behind CHEAA – cooperation, healthy spirit, excellence, agility, and accountability. “ We have seen very good cohesion around these values across our 3 offices in Canada.
A Good Year for Growth
The effects of Agrocorp’s strong expansion efforts are already coming into focus – in the last fiscal year, the company tripled its growth. According to Topham, this impressive progress can be attributed to a serendipitous combination of its concentrated growth strategies, its new facilities in Saskatchewan and Alberta, and a good year for Canadian agriculture as a whole.
“We’ve had 2 plants come online within this last fiscal year, and next year we’ll be able to realize the full potential of those assets,” says Topham. “Second, there is a historically big crop in Canada – the biggest crop Canada has ever produced – so the timing of those assets coming online was fortuitous. The third aspect would be our growing management team, Kevin Price joined us from one of the largest trading companies in the world, it is actually a reunion for us having started out in this business together 10 years ago. His experience has enabled us to capitalize on our new acquisitions and forge deeper relationships with existing trade partners.
But there is still plenty of room for Agrocorp to grow, and the company is actively seeking out opportunities. “We’re definitely still looking for and in discussions for additional acquisitions – that’s what our primary focus is right now, especially in Canada,” says Topham.
With the groundwork it has laid to date, building a strong network with end markets around the world, Agrocorp’s unique attributes and growth in the past will continue to propel its growth in the future. “We have distribution offices in most major distribution centers all over the world wherever Canadian agriculture products find their home,” he adds. “This Agrocorp Singapore initiative has really enabled us to get aggressive on pricing and truly bridge the gap between Canadian growers and overseas consumers.”