Merit Functional Foods has announced the official opening of its 94,000 square foot plant-based protein facility in Winnipeg.

Merit has now completed construction and has started to commission and optimize its highest purity pea and canola proteins for use in food and beverage applications.

Merit’s accelerated construction project started in the Fall of 2019 and completed in December 2020. The project is the first commercial facility in the world with the capability to produce food-grade canola protein. It will also produce the purest pea protein available to food, beverage, and nutraceutical brands.

“This is a momentous step for us,” said Merit’s Co-CEO Ryan Bracken. “We’ve been building our product portfolio and our facility for the past year and a half. Now, it’s time to redefine plant protein.”

The plant will have the flexibility to run both pea and/or canola, with initial requirements of 25,000 tonnes of raw materials, and with the potential for future plant expansion, Merit’s raw material requirement could rise to more than 100,000 tonnes per year.

“Now that we’ve completed construction, we’re spending every day optimizing our manufacturing process so that we can satisfy the demand for better-tasting, better-functioning, and better-for-you plant protein,” Bracken said. “With our facility now live, we’re eager to start collaborating with brands across the industry to develop better plant-based products.”

Merit expects to begin fulfilling commercial commitments this quarter.