Genesis Grain & Fertilizer, LP (Genesis) a Western Canadian farmer owned agribusiness confirmed recently the first of seven anticipated fertilizer SuperCenters. Through the united efforts of promoters, Farmers of North America (FNA) and AgraCity Crop & Nutrition (AgraCity), Belle Plaine, Saskatchewan, Canada has the honor of becoming the first location of this historic $24 million project and has paved the way for the organization to secure the final debt financing for the project.
“Farmers have been deserving of this unique business structure for countless generations,” noted FNA President, James Mann. “In a matter of 12 months once construction is complete, just over 600 farmers from over 200 Western Canada communities with the vision and confidence to join FNA and AgraCity on this journey, will be the first to directly share in the responsibility and rewards of owning part of a major fertilizer supply and distribution system. A piece of the supply chain they can call their own.”
Andre Berube from Falher, Alberta was not only proud to hear of the announcement, he shared the vision and optimism for what Genesis and its operations would mean for future generations of farm families. “Being an investor in any project is always an exciting opportunity, but to be able to help select a reputable firm to create what I believe will be a coveted operation globally, was both an honor, and will serve as a memory for my lifetime. A story I cannot wait to share with my grandchildren, and may I be so fortunate, my great grandchildren. That’s why I invested to begin with; I wanted to ensure the future was bright for the generations to come.”
Building a world-class operation requires significant expertise and attention to detail. Genesis will partner with Stueve Canada Ltd. to serve as its lead in the contracting oversight of this significant investment into the future of farming in Western Canada.
Once complete, Genesis Belle Plaine will boast a 52,000 tonne fertilizer SuperCenter with the ability to distribute three times its capacity at 150,000 tonnes. This will be the largest direct to farm facility of its kind in Canada. The Stueve design, in partnership with Genesis, will accommodate urea, phosphate, micro-nutrients, sulphur, and potash enabling annual supply for farmer investors.
The Genesis team invited a handful of investors to tour fertilizer blending facilities in the USA to get their opinion on specific attributes of the facilities. Mike Haydon from Swift Current, Saskatchewan had this to say, “I learned that these are state of the art facilities and there are a lot of complexities in getting the project to this stage. This is a first-class innovative project that will definitely be an asset to the farmers involved”.
The first SuperCenter has already established a very high bar of performance with the adoption of world class blending technology for dry fertilizer offerings. An ability to process its own micro-nutrients and even impregnate bulk fertilizer with advanced fertilizer additives. These services and offerings will be complemented by the most advanced high throughput, in-load and out-load equipment, as well as best-in-class automation technology and related systems.
In servicing Genesis customers throughout the Prairies and even up into British Columbia’s Peace Country, the SuperCenter has been designed to directly load and unload rail cars. A competitive advantage that the invested owners of Genesis, FNA, and AgraCity feel confident will attract the respect and long-term support from partnering rail providers, given the deep roots of the operation to the farming community.
Jason Mann, President, AgraCity, spoke to the sophistication of the Genesis SuperCenter model: “Thinking beyond the investment, farmers recognize they needed to become a part of something special. A mechanism of incredible innovation and design, working to their benefit by providing a multi-dimensional return in the form of savings (lower fertilizer and related input costs), earnings (retail sales to customers), and equity (reaping the reward of ownership).”
The Genesis value proposition is founded on its ability to accrue retail margins for invested farm business owners. Future development intends to complement this reward with the distribution of nitrogen fertilizer manufactured by the proposed ProjectN plant once it comes on line.
“Genesis is an excellent opportunity for our farm to invest in a fertilizer company and realize the profit from one of our biggest expenses on the farm” states Doug Heaman a Genesis investor from Virden, Manitoba. Also involved is Brad Levorson, a FNA member and Genesis investor from Cabri, Saskatchewan, who was part of the selection process and had this to say. “Being a part of Genesis allows me to capture a return from the marketplace by being both an owner and a customer. To me, that is what I was missing all along.”