Southern Ont. mushroom farm backed for expansion

An expansion-minded mushroom producer in southern Ontario’s Golden Horseshoe has picked up rural development funding from the province for a new processing plant.

Greenwood Mushroom Farm, best known for the Windmill Farms mushroom brand, will get about $3.1 million from the province’s rural economic development (RED) program toward its $9.8 million project.

The company plans to put up a 115,000-square foot facility at Ashburn, about 15 km north of Oshawa, to produce and process “new mushroom products.”

The resulting expansion is expected to allow the company to boost annual production by eight million to 10 million pounds, cut production costs and boost sales by up to $15 million per year, the company said.

“Demand for our locally grown mushroom products marketed under the Windmill Farms brand has seen significant growth over the past several years,” Greenwood managing partner Clay Taylor said in the province’s release.

The company operates its own fleet of refrigerated trucks to deliver mushrooms “seven days a week” to retailers and wholesalers across Ontario and Quebec. Its products include pre-packaged mushrooms and larger bulk boxes as well as specialty lines such as shiitake, oyster, portabella and cremini mushrooms and various Canada Organic varieties.

The expansion, Taylor said, “will provide the platform for continued growth and success in terms of production and processing capabilities.”

The project is also expected to create 80 new jobs at the company, the province said.

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