Viterra plans $100 million upgrade at Vancouver port

Viterra is spending more than  $100 million to upgrade the Pacific Terminal at the Port of Vancouver.

The Regina-based grain company announced April 10 that it will perform a series of “operational improvements and upgrades” that will increase capacity and throughput at the terminal.

“Our goal is to create the most efficient port terminal in Canada with unprecedented capability for processing a diverse range of commodities,” said Kyle Jeworski, Viterra’s president and chief executive officer for North America.

“This is a significant investment spanning several projects, that when completed, will enhance our strategic position on the West Coast, and our ability to continue meeting the needs of our destination customers globally.”

The most significant element of the project is the installation of a new ship loader system at the terminal.

The new loading system will increase shipping capacity and allow for the loading of “post-Panamax” vessels, Viterra said.

Other projects include the installation of new bulk weighers, upgrades to shipping conveyors and rotary cleaners, and improved electrical and dust control systems.

When all of the upgrades are complete, annual throughput capacity will be increased to roughly six million tonnes.

Completion of the projects is expected by 2016.

Pacific Terminal is located on the Burrard Inlet.

It processes and ships a wide variety of agricultural commodities, including peas, canola, flax, lentils, soybeans and corn.

“Demand for trade to and from Canada is increasing, and it is essential that Port Metro Vancouver, and terminals within the port, respond with sustainable and well-managed growth,” said Robin Silvester, president and chief executive officer at Port Metro Vancouver.

“Viterra’s operational upgrades are an excellent example of increasing capacity and efficiency within their existing footprint.”

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