CANADA – Canadian plant proteins producer has entered into a joint venture partnership with an investor group to build a new US$48.3 million (CAD 65 million) pea protein and canola protein production facility in Western Canada.

The facility is planned to process approximately 20,000 tonnes of peas per year starting in mid-2020.

It will produce Burcon’s Peazazz® and Peazac™ pea proteins, as well as Burcon’s Supertein®, Puratein® and Nutratein® canola proteins.

The new protein production facility will be owned and operated by Burcon Functional Foods Corporation (“Burcon Foods”), a newly created operating entity.

As a standalone entity, the management, sales, marketing and production personnel of Burcon Foods will be direct employees of the new operating company.

Burcon will hold 40% stake in the new business entity while the investor group, which will make significant capital contributions the remaining 60%.

The JV partner investor group is said to have extensive operations expertise in production facility design and startup, as well as considerable expertise in the manufacturing and sale of plant proteins.

“Today’s announcements constitute a truly transformative event for Burcon, and a new chapter in Burcon’s development focused on bringing the company’s unique plant proteins to market directly as a producer.” said Johann F. Tergesen, Burcon’s president and chief executive officer. 

“Having the capacity to produce both our unique pea proteins, as well as our canola proteins, in our own production facility is a key pillar of our differentiation strategy.

“The ability to blend our pea and canola proteins to create nutritionally unparalleled plant protein combinations, while preserving the highly desirable functional properties the proteins naturally possess, will give us a true competitive advantage. 

“We look forward to offering our pea and canola protein products to customers and consumers in Canada, North America and worldwide.” 

Burcon Foods has also entered into a 20-year exclusive agreement with Burcon to license the technology required to produce, market and sell Burcon’s novel pulse protein ingredients.

Under the terms of the license agreement, Burcon Foods will have exclusive rights across all geographic regions and all product uses for Burcon’s pulse-proteins (including pea) and canola-protein technologies.

Based in Canada, Burcon NutraScience develops functional and renewable plant proteins and its portfolio include CLARISOY, a soy protein targeting the health and well niche in the protein ingredient market.