Increased demand for premium greenhouse grown products across the NatureFresh Farms product line has prompted one of Canada’s largest independent growers to break ground on a new 106,000ft2 distribution centre in Leamington, Ontario.
The state-of-the-art facility, which is due to be completed by mid-summer, will enable the company to increase production and expand its speciality packaging options on site.
President Peter Quiring said the investment demonstrated the company’s commitment to growing its business in Canada and becoming a year-round supplier.
“The continued expansion of our operations and launch of new products is a direct result of the growth of the NatureFresh Farms brand,” he said.
“Over the last few years, we have increased our production capacity to meet the demands of our retail partners.”
The family company employs more than 500 people across its greenhouses and distribution centres in Canada and the US.
The new facility brings the company’s total number of distribution centres to six. At the end of 2016 it opened a 60,000 ft2 facility in Toledo, Ohio to handle its growing greenhouse tomato production in the region.
In the past year NatureFresh has significantly expanded its organic production. After doubling its organic bell pepper acreage in 2016 the company recently launched USDA-certified organic vine tomatoes and red grape tomatoes.
“The increasing demand for organics prompted our team to bring two new items to market this year, both are being grown in Leamington, Ontario,” said Ray Wowryk, director of business development.
The company also unveiled its new Canadian grown Tomz snacking tomatoes in March that are being packed in new top seal formats.