Merit Foods begins commercial production

The first-of-its-kind food-grade canola protein will be going to market this quarter

A Winnipeg-based company, Merit Foods, is touting a global first for canola.

The division of Burcon NutraScience says Merit has “… achieved first commercial production…” of its line of canola proteins, making the facility the first and only commercial-scale facility in the world capable of producing food-grade protein from canola, the world’s second-largest oilseed crop.

Merit said in a news release it intends to continue optimizing the manufacturing process in the coming weeks, with an expectation of fulfilling commercial commitments in the second quarter for its “better-tasting, better-functioning and better-for-you” plant proteins.

“This is a truly momentous achievement for us and one that has been a long time in the making,” said Johann F. Tergesen, Burcon’s president and chief executive officer in the release. “Burcon first embraced the vision of canola’s potential as a premium, food-grade protein source over 20 years ago.”

Burcon food scientists and chemical engineers worked for more than two decades to unlock the full nutritional and functional properties of canola proteins, the company says.

Merit’s plant-based protein production facility is dedicated to the production of novel pea and canola protein ingredients using licensed technology from Burcon. Unique in its design and structured for rapid expansion, Merit’s 94,000-square-foot facility has been engineered and constructed to be able to process both non-GMO canola and yellow field peas, giving it the ability to produce Merit’s lineup of Puratein canola proteins, its Peazazz and Peazac pea proteins, and its MeritPro protein blends.

Merit touts the products as… “ideal ways for food and beverage companies to give their products a much-needed nutritional boost while remaining dairy free, soy free, grain free and gluten free.”

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