The government of Canada announced plans to invest $16.9 million in Gay Lea Foods Co-operative Ltd., Canada, to expand its Teeswater, Ontario, Canada, facility with modern equipment to improve productivity and competitiveness.

FedDev Ontario’s investment of $10 million will support the acquisition and installation of advanced processing equipment and systems. This will allow Gay Lea Foods to advance its scientific and technical capability to produce new, high-value milk products.

Funding of $6.9 million through Agri-Food Canada’s Dairy Processing Investment Fund will allow Gay Lea Foods to adopt innovative processes and equipment to minimize byproduct waste and reduce the plant’s environmental footprint. The project will also provide additional capacity, and as such, the co-operative will use more high-quality milk from Ontario’s dairy farmers in the making of their value-added products.

The combined investment will create approximately 13 new jobs and help to maintain 50 at the Teeswater, Canada, facility.

“Today’s investment in Gay Lea Foods will help strengthen the important agri-food sector here in rural southern Ontario, while creating and maintaining good jobs for Canadians,” says Navdeep Bains, minister of innovation, science and economic development and minister responsible for FedDev Ontario.

“Gay Lea Foods has been steadily growing a sustainable co-operative while being a preferred partner in Canadian dairy, food and beverage processing. The investment in our Teeswater facility is one of many investments we have committed over the last five years for not only our co-operative, but Canadian dairy farmers and a prosperous future for Canadian dairy,” adds Rob Goodwill, chair of the board for Gay Lea Foods.

“The modernization of our Teeswater facility is proof that with the right tools and partners, innovation and advanced manufacturing is possible in rural communities. It is also a great example of progress and adaptation in Canadian dairy, as the site of Canada’s oldest creamery is now home to the creation of value-added products to serve new market opportunities,” says Michael Barrett, president and CEO, Gay Lea Foods.