Provincial program supports HyLife Foods expansion


Online-C1-IMG 0026Photo by Eoin Devereux

Premier Brian Pallister speaks in Neepawa on Friday, Sept. 14 regarding the Provincial support for HyLife Foods Ltd. through the TIF program. Behind Pallister from left to right were Agassiz MLA Eileen Clarke, executive chief operating officer for HyLife Foods Ltd. Denis Vielfaure and Riding Mountain MLA Greg Nesbitt.

By Eoin Devereux

Neepawa Banner & Press

The recent expansion at HyLife Foods Ltd. in Neepawa has received a little extra support from the province. On Friday, Sept. 14, the Manitoba government announced that it would assist HyLife’s recently completed expansion to the Neepawa plant, as well as the ongoing construction of a new feed mill near Killarney, through its Tax Increment Financing (TIF) program. 

Tax Increment Financing is a financing tool that can promote economic development through incremental taxes created by significant new development. Through the TIF initiative, HyLife will receive $9.5 million over 22 years. HyLife has spent $176 million in recent years to expand in Neepawa and Killarney, as well as develop more hog barns throughout western Manitoba. 

During a press conference at Neepawa Lions Riverbend Park, Premier Brian Pallister said supporting HyLife’s expansion in this manner aligns with their priority of building on Manitoba’s industrial strengths.

The growth we are seeing at HyLife helps position Manitoba pork as a high-quality, high-value commodity in a growing global market,” noted Pallister. “To aid with the type of significant investment, the idea [behind the TIF program] is to encourage the investment of private capital into our economy, that will stay here and create more jobs and more growth; More employment and more opportunities for years to come.” 

Economic activity locally

Claude Vielfaure, the CEO for HyLife Foods Ltd., thanked the province for their support. He added that this enables them to create jobs and economic activity locally here in Neepawa and in the province of Manitoba for the foreseeable future.

“It’s an important part because it gives companies confidence to invest in the province and to continue to grow. It takes all aspects for this to happen and one of them is certainly for the government to be positive and onside on the growth in rural Manitoba,” Vielfaure said. “As a grassroots business that started in Manitoba, it’s so important to have a government that is supportive of business, supports industry and supports rural Manitoba. That’s what today is all about. It’s very exciting for us at HyLife to be able to continue to invest here in the province and here in Neepawa and be able to do so long-term.”

Commitment to the area

Agassiz MLA Eileen Clarke said she’s seen first hand the type of commitment HyLife over the past decade. She said it’s having a positive impact on our region.

“My involvement with HyLife goes back to 2008 when the first immigrant workers came to Manitoba and came, specifically to our area. The changes and the growth that’s been seen in the past 10 years, because of that is unbelievable. And the economic spinoffs from HyLife, because of the jobs they’re creating and their financial commitment to this area; it’s unbelievable,” stated Clarke. “I just can’t say enough good things about the opportunities they have provided to Neepawa and area. These types of business opportunities in rural Manitoba is pretty exciting.”

HyLife’s expansion in Neepawa focused on optimizing its pork production system, allowing for the expansion to a full double shift and equipment improvements. Headquartered in La Broquerie, HyLife is the largest hog production company in Canada and among the top 15 in North America. HyLife exports 75 percent of its products to 23 countries around the world including Japan, China, Mexico and Russia.