Cavendish Farms agriculture vice president Jubs Bristow is convinced that the southern Alberta potato industry will continue to provide many opportunities in the region. “The potato industry continues to increase acres in southern Alberta, creating opportunities for local businesses,” he said, adding that contract prices for potatoes have increased, providing a good return for growers.
With the new state-of-the art frozen potato processing facility opening on the outskirts of Lethbridge in 2019, there is an increase in volume from 247 million pounds of potatoes to nearly 700 million pounds annually.
“Which is an increase of more than 10,000 acres annually, which we previously contracted from local growers, said Bristow. He said growers are managing input costs by getting professional advice from agronomists for optimal application for fertilizers and tillage practices while maintaining sustainable agricultural practices.
The Lethbridge plant provides employment for nearly 300 employees and the plant spans the equivalent of over seven football fields, while there were 900 employees on site at peak construction time and 110 Alberta companies were a part of the project.