Dignitaries met at the St. Albert Cheese Co-op in St. Albert on Mon., April 29 to announce an investment of $1.5-million toward the Co-op’s future. From the left, Nation Mayor François St. Amour, St. Albert Co-op general manager Éric Lafontaine, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie Claude-Bibeau, St. Albert Co-op chair Gérald Benoît and Glengarry-Prescott-Russell MP Francis Drouin. Sawyer Helmer photo
ST. ALBERT – Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie-Claude Bibeau, announced an investment of up to $1.5-million under the Dairy Processing Investment Fund to St-Albert Cheese Co-operative while visiting the Cheese Factory Co-op on Mon., April 29. The funding will be used to modernize equipment that will help the company improve its productivity and competitiveness. “The subsidy provides essential support for our cooperative, helping us in our efforts and contributing to the considerable investments needed to enhance our performance and competitiveness so that we can prepare for the many challenges ahead, and seize new opportunities in the context of open markets and the consolidation of the dairy industry. We will now be able to continue to produce and distribute our exceptionally high-quality and flavourful St-Albert cheeses made with 100 per cent pure Canadian milk, maintain and create jobs for skilled and dedicated workers and continue to invest in our community as we have been doing for the past 125 years,” said Éric Lafontaine, general manager at St-Albert Cheese Co-Operative.
This investment is part of an upgrade to St-Albert Cheese’s facilities, which will include state-of-the-art equipment that will enhance plant operations and help optimize the value of its by-products. This new equipment will help reduce the impact of power outages and effectively manage the performance of ventilation and humidity levels so refrigeration in the warehouses runs efficiently, enabling the company to increase the volume of milk product it processes while reducing production costs. “The government is proud to support St-Albert Cheese Co-operative in their efforts to modernize their operations. This investment will allow them to increase production and respond to rising consumer demand for their excellent products, while contributing to maintaining the economic vitality of the region, thanks to the creation of good jobs for the middle class,” said Bibeau. GPR MP Francis Drouin added, “Canada’s growing dairy sector plays an important role in Ontario’s economic growth. With modern equipment designed to boost processing efficiency and production, St-Albert Cheese Co-op will be well positioned to seize new market opportunities and respond to the growing demands of the sector.”