by Gloria Welton
Natures Crops International in Kensington grows and processes specialty oils for dietary supplements, food, and personal care products for humans, horses, and dogs. “We are vertically integrated from soil to oil,” says Crystal Cormier, General Manager. “We grow oilseed crops, manufacture those crops into oil, and sell the oil.”
There are office locations in Canada, the US and the UK. At the company’s Canadian location in Kensington, an oil production facility and a refinery were commissioned in 2010.
The production facility mechanically extracts the oil from the seed and the refinery removes impurities from the oil.
“We also have an on–site quality control laboratory, which monitors every step of our operation, from planting the seed going out to our growers, harvested seed coming back in, and every step of our production in the refinery. The facility is ISO-22000 certified, and our lab is fully capable of supplying a certificate of analysis for all the oil that comes from our facility.”
They have three main products:
Ahiflower oil is the richest non-genetically modified plant-based source of Omega-3-6-9 oil currently available on the market. Ahiflower oil is commonly found in nutraceuticals, nutritional supplements, food ingredients, and animal nutrition.
“This oil has been the subject of a number of studies over the last several years,” says Garth Cole, Production Manager. “Currently it being compared to flaxseed oil and fish oil at the University of Toronto, which is looking at the omega-3 turnover in brain and other tissues.
“The University of Moncton is doing a human clinical trial looking at hip and joint mobility and pain and related inflammatory biomarkers related to rheumatoid arthritis.
“In addition, DoseCann Inc. has recently purchased the global rights to ahiflower oil to use in their portfolio of cannabis products, and we are very pleased to be working with another Island company.”
Crambe or Abyssinian oil is grown locally on PEI. It is high in erucic acid and is used in personal care products.
Meadowfoam seed oil is known for its stability and is used in personal care products. The seeds are grown in Oregon in the US and processed on PEI.
“Due to increased demand, the company has doubled the production of Crambe and Meadowfoam seed oil. This is very good news for Island growers of Crambe.”
Currently, there are 15 year-round staff. Production Manager Garth Cole, who has been with the company for about 12 years, says they have been fortunate to find and retain the staff they need. “We tend to promote staff from within the company,” says Garth.
The company is looking to hire a Labourer and is willing to train the right candidate to become a Refining Technician. “The right person for this job needs some mechanical background and be reliable and willing to learn. New staff will be trained with three experienced staff and will get exposure to many of the duties required.
“Staff work four 12-hour daytime shifts one week and three nighttime shifts the next week. This schedule offers a long weekend every week.
“The company has a good compliment of staff, but we have noticed in the past year that when we advertise, fewer resumés are coming to us. This is a concern. We are open to looking at each resumé that comes to our company to see if a fit is possible.
“A big part of our operation is in the production facility, and we look for people with production experience and mechanical and equipment-related experience to fill those positions.”
Garth says wages are competitive and they offer a good benefit package which includes a pension program. To apply, drop by the facility with a resumé, or send a resumé to [email protected]
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