Taber, Alberta is home to Rogers Sugar beet processing plant. Rogers Sugar contracts with sugar beet growers to encourage continued high quality production and increased acreage of beets. Sugar beets are one of Alberta's main irrigated crops and Alberta is the only province to produce sugar from sugar beets. About 250 Alberta farms plant more than 35,000 acres of beets each year for processing at Taber.
Taber's sugar beet processing plant is the only one of its kind in the country. The plant has a processing capacity of 150,000 tonnes, and is one of the most advanced sugar beet plants in North America. The plant underwent a $40 million expansion at the end of the 1990s. Installation of a wastewater facility for the plant created more than 20,000 hours of employment alone. Plant expansion has led to an increase in permanent employment and major growth in the local economy through housing starts, retail development and the growth of service industries.
Production in the Taber facility includes granulated and powdered sugars in several package sizes. There are also two types of liquid sugar produced in Taber, liquid sucrose and liquid invert sugar. Both are shipped to industrial customers via bulk tankers.
Sugar beet harvest, Rogers Sugar, Taber Alberta
Sugar Ingredient Costs Attract Confectionery Investment in Alberta
Sugar ingredient costs in Alberta are less than half of the sugar costs at US locations. In comparison to the United States, the opportunity for confectionery manufacturing in Alberta is driven by the availability of locally produced sugar at world market prices. No provincial sales tax in Alberta also contributes to the cost advantage.
According to a study by the Boyd Co. Inc., prepared for Alberta Food and Rural Development, cost savings from locating production in Alberta compared to US locations range from $4.9M ($US) to $10.9M ($US) annually. Sugar costs are one of the primary factors in these savings. Several multinational food processors have chosen Alberta, helping to make food and beverage processing the third largest manufacturing sector in Alberta (See also: Confectionery: The Alberta Opportunity).
Alberta food and beverage manufacturing shipments have grown to $11 billion. Increases in sugar and sugar-using industries such as confectionery, bakery and fruit and vegetable processing contributed to the gain (See also: Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development, 2008).
The province of Alberta is strategically located to access North American and Asian markets. Alberta is the second largest exporter of primary and processed agricultural and food products in Canada, after Ontario. In 2009, processed agri-food product exports from Alberta were valued at $3.2 billion.
Food companies that locate production in Alberta can benefit from a reliable supply of high quality, low cost sugar. From a globally competitive location, companies can deliver products meeting high quality standards for customers throughout North America.
Vancouver, British Columbia is home to one of Canada's three cane sugar refineries. The Rogers cane sugar refinery is located on the Port of Vancouver's south shore. The refinery can produce up to 240,000 tonnes of sugar per year from imported raw cane sugar. The production output of the plant largely depends on the output of the Taber Alberta beet sugar facility and the variable US export opportunities that draw sugar from that plant. Sugar produced at the Vancouver refinery is sold to retail and industrial customers throughout western Canada. Rogers Sugar continues to invest in its Vancouver refinery to ensure that it can continue to meet its customers needs for high-quality, efficiently-produced sugar. The Company's sugar products are marketed primarily under the "Rogers" trade name and include granulated, icing, cube, yellow and brown sugars, liquid sugars and specialty sugars and syrups.
Rogers Sugar, Vancouver, BC
Rogers Sugar is Strategically Located to Supply BC's Food Processing Sector
British Columbia represents about 9% of Canada's food processing companies (about 300 BC firms) and 17% of Canada's beverage processing companies (about 40 BC firms). BC's food processing market is valued at over $6 billion and has about 31,000 workers. Rogers Sugar is strategically located to supply sugar to the majority of BC's food processing companies that are located in the lower mainland.
An estimated 55% of all of B.C.'s food processing firms are located in the Greater Vancouver area and the nearby Fraser Valley. Another 30% of food processing firms are located in the Okanagan Valley and the coastal regions (See also: BC Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Fisheries).
The British Columbia food industry is dominated by a large number of small and medium sized firms which provide the industry with operational flexibility in responding to shifts in consumer tastes and preferences. These firms rely on a steady supply of high-quality, competitively priced Canadian sugar.
Ontario is home to four sugar industry facilities:
Redpath Sugar Toronto Refinery: Built in 1959, Redpath's cane sugar refinery on the Toronto waterfront has an output capacity of more than 2,000 tonnes per day. In 1997, Redpath completed a $40 million expansion and modernization initiative that increased the plant's production capacity by 75%.
Redpath Custom Packing Belleville, Onario: Produces value-added sugar products, such as iced tea mixes, drink crystals, hot chocolate, and sugar gelatin blends.
Lantic Sugar, Toronto distribution centre: Distributes Lantic Sugar products in central Canada.
Lantic Blending, Scarborough, Ontario: Produced value-added sugar products, such as crystal drink mixes, iced tea, cocoa blends, and gelatin mixes.
Redpath Sugars, Toronto, ON
Low Sugar Costs Attract Investment in Ontario's Food Processing Sector
Food processing is the second largest manufacturing industry in Ontario. The combination of high-quality local food ingredients (including sugar), a skilled and educated workforce, low business costs, central location, world class research facilities and an excellent transportation system give Ontario an advantage over competing jurisdictions.
Ontario's food processing sector contributes $30 billion to the economy and employs over 83,000 people. (Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs).
Ontario has attracted substantial investment in major sugar-using food processing sectors including confectionery and baking sectors which together account for 18% of Ontario's food processing market. Since 2000 several major food companies have added new investments in Ontario, related in part to low sugar costs relative to US locations (See also: Invest in Canada).
Lantic Sugar owns and operates a cane sugar refinery on a 12-acre lot in eastern Montreal. The original plant was built in 1888. Over the years, the building and processing facilities have been frequently upgraded and a major expansion was completed in 2000. This investment doubled the refinery's regular capacity to 440,000 tonnes and with overtime, plant output can exceed 600,000 tonnes.
Food Processing in Quebec Benefits from High Quality, Low-Cost Sugar
"With its rich rural tradition and forward-looking entrepreneurship, the agri-food industry is a major contributor to Quebec's economy. The presence of several multinationals, including Barry Callebaut, Danone, Frito-Lay, Kraft and Nestlé, testifies to the vitality of the industry" (See also: Investissement Québec, Agri-food).
Lantic Sugar, Montreal, QC
The food processing sector is Quebec's number one manufacturing employer, ahead of chemical products, transportation equipment, paper, and electrical/electronic products. Food processing is characterized by the predominance of small and medium-sized businesses, as well as artisan enterprises that make use of the wealth of local ingredients, including high-quality, low-cost sugar.
The food processing industry is Quebec's leading manufacturing industry and represents 63,000 jobs. Food processing shipments were $22.5 billion in 2009 and agri-food exports reached $4.4 billion.
"The plentiful supply and affordable price of Canadian sugar constitute competitive advantages for food processing companies providing products to the North American market"
(See also: Quebec: A Dynamic and Profitable Business Environment).
Sugar prices benefit food processors in every Canadian province
The positive economic impact of an efficient domestic sugar industry is felt in every Canadian province, not only those that are home to sugar refineries. The food processing sector is the largest manufacturing sector in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island and the second largest sector in New Brunswick. A steady supply of low-cost, high-quality sugar is an important ingredient in the success of the food processing sector. Retail consumers also benefit from Canada's efficient sugar industry as domestic sugar prices are significantly less than those in the United States, where sugar is subject to government controls and high support prices.