Grain Milling in Canada
Commercial grain mills have operated in Canada for over two hundred years.
Canada is a young country, founded as a federation of provinces in 1867. Flour mills were operating in Canada more than 100 years earlier. The grandfather of all Canadian milling wheats was introduced to Canada in 1851. Some of Canada’s largest modern grain mills are operating at or near locations where mills have operated for more than 100 years.
Canada has approximately 55 commercial wheat and oat mills situated from Pacific to Atlantic coasts.
Commercial scale wheat and oat mills operate in 8 of Canada’s 13 provinces and territories. Total milling capacity is shared about equally between eastern and western Canada. The majority of wheat milling capacity is in the east in close proximity to larger urban centres. The majority of oat milling capacity is situated in the Prairie provinces.
Canadian mills grind over 3.5 million tonnes of wheat, oats and barley each year.
Canadian mills export wheat flour, semolina and other milled grain products to over 30 countries.
Canadian milling companies have free trade access to all of Canada, the United States and Mexico under the terms of the North American Free Trade Agreement. Although the United States is Canada’s largest export market for milled grain products, over 30 countries import wheat flour and other milled grain products from Canada each year.
Canadian mills use state-of-the-art milling methods and technology.
Capital investment in Canadian grain milling facilities is approximately $1.5 billion. 20% of Canada’s grain mills are less than 15 years old.