Viterra held a “grand reopening” of its Pacific Terminal at the Port of Vancouver on Thursday, marking the completion of more than $100 million in upgrades to the facility.
The enhancements will triple the terminal’s handling capacity, giving it the ability to handle over 6 million metric tonnes annually, according to the Regina-based grain company — a subsidiary of Glencore.
“This added capacity is basically equivalent to adding two additional port facilities in Vancouver,” said Kyle Jeworski, Viterra’s president and CEO. “And while this extra capacity is important for our industry, we have also created further efficiencies by improving our current handling and processing procedures.”
In addition to a new ship loader, the company says other improvements include the installation of new bulk weighers, upgrades to shipping conveyors and rotary cleaners, and new electrical and dust control systems. The upgrades will facilitate the loading of “post-Panamax” vessels — the largest ships allowed through the recently-expanded Panama Canal.
Viterra says the majority of its focus at the Pacific Terminal will be on pulse crops, with the changes “supporting the efficient handling of delicate products.”
“These upgrades coincide well with work we’ve been doing in other parts of our asset network, such as our new pulse cleaning facility in Tempest, Alberta, allowing us to capture the increasing demand for pulse and specialty grain products from customers worldwide,” said Jeworski.
The completion of the upgrades to the Viterra facility comes just months after Richardson International finished a $140-million expansion of its export terminal on the North Vancouver waterfront. G3 Canada is also working on plans for a $500-million terminal at Vancouver.