British Columbia chocolate producer, English Bay Blending & Fine Chocolates, announced its final investment decision (FID) of over $22 million to relocate and expand its business from Delta, B.C. to Stony Plain, Alberta. The company will invest in the construction of a new, approximately 120,000-square-foot food manufacturing facility, hiring 70 permanent positions and 90 temporary construction workers with plans to hire more people as the business expands.
“In my many years of growing diverse companies, I find people to be my greatest resource. Our team is exceptional, helping each other across businesses. We have established relationships with the Town of Stony Plain through the development of our other entities and we seek to continue our growth in Stony Plain with the move of English Bay to this wonderful community,” said Jack Seguin, Founder and CEO, English Bay.
The company was growing and looking to expand but ran into challenges with a lack of affordable land in its original location in B.C. English Bay considered relocating to Ohio but ultimately chose Stony Plain and the Edmonton region due to its abundant availability of affordable land, lower taxes, available feedstocks, and improved ability to get their product to market efficiently. The company was further incentivized to relocate by Alberta’s Investment and Growth Fund (IGF)—the company will receive a $1.6 million grant to support their relocation. Additionally, English Bay will benefit from the new 12% provincial tax credit aimed at companies that make a minimum capital investment of $7.4 million in value-added agri-processing in Alberta.
English Bay is an example of what’s possible to increase the economic benefits the Edmonton region reaps through our food and agriculture sector. With the majority of agriculture in the province being primary production, expanding value-added food production could double or even triple the GDP related to this sector. In 2021, the agri-food sector contributed $6 billion GDP.
“Alberta’s government has created an economic climate that has attracted yet another high-impact investor to the province. May I be the first to welcome English Bay to Stony Plain. Our ‘Team Alberta’ approach with our partner Edmonton Global has been incredibly effective to position our province as one of the best places to do business in North America. Alberta checks all the boxes for companies like English Bay when they are looking for a place to grow,” said Rajan Sawhney, Minister of Trade, Immigration and Multiculturalism.
Relocating to Stony Plain will ensure English Bay is well-positioned to continue its growth from the Edmonton region. As a value-added agri-processor, English Bay will have access to high-quality ingredients and plans to source as many local ingredients as possible for its production, including locally grown grains and oils.
English Bay selected 8.3 acres of land in Stony Plain as the future home of its new factory, which will begin construction in 2023 and is expected to be fully operational in 2025.
**Editors Note: The financial figures have been converted to U.S. dollars.