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Richardson International

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Richardson International is a privately held Canadian agricultural and food industry company headquartered in Winnipeg, Manitoba Richardson is a worldwide handler and merchandiser of all major Canadian-grown grains and oilseeds and a vertically-integrated processor and manufacturer of oats and canola-based products Richardson has over 2,500 employees across Canada and the US Richardson International is a subsidiary of James Richardson & Sons, Limited, established in 1857

In addition to Richardson International, James Richardson & Sons manages financial services through Richardson Financial Group, property management through Richardson Center Limited, and oil and gas exploration through Tundra Oil & Gas Partnership Richardson Financial Group consists of two operating divisions, Richardson Partners Financial Limited, and Richardson Capital In 2009, Richardson Partners Financial merged with GMP Private Client to form Richardson GMP, a wealth management and investment services firm


  • 1 Divisions
  • 2 History
    • 21 James Richardson and Sons Ltd
    • 22 Grain and Crop Inputs Operations
    • 23 Food Processing
  • 3 References
  • 4 External links


Richardson International is a vertically integrated company, with facilities across Canada and the United States Headquartered in Winnipeg, Richardson has 3 divisions In Western Canada, Richardson operates grain handling and crop input facilities under the name of Richardson Pioneer Ag Business Centres Richardson operates a number of port facilities located strategically in Eastern and Western Canada

Richardson Oilseed processes canola for oils, sprays and margarine for industrial and home cooking Richardson was the first company to market canola oil and markets canola products, including under the Canola Harvest brand

Richardson Milling processes oats and in Canada and the USA


James Richardson and Sons Ltd

The Richardson family has been synonymous with the grain industry in western Canada from the early days of European settlement to the present James Richardson came to Canada from Ireland in 1822 or 1823 He started in Kingston, Ontario with a tailor shop, and when he took payment in grain, he was forced into the grain business He gave up his tailor shop, and with his two sons formed James Richardson and Sons in 1857

  • The first Richardson elevator was built at Kingston in 1882, and another at Neepawa, Manitoba in 1890
  • James Richardson was the first to arrange the first shipment of wheat from western Canada through the lake system to Liverpool, England in 1883
  • In 1912, James Armstrong Richardson Sr became Vice-President, becoming President in 1919 of his grandfather's company
  • In 1925, at Moose Jaw, James Richardson & Sons established a radio station with the call sign CJRM The radio business was exited in the 1940s This station is now 620 CKRM in Regina
  • Western Canada Airways was formed in 1926 by James Armstrong Richardson Sr Western Canada Airways merged into Canadian Airways in 1930
  • James Armstrong Richardson was a Canadian Cabinet minister under Pierre Trudeau
  • George T Richardson led the company through many large changes

Grain and Crop Inputs Operations

Pioneer Grain and Richardson Pioneer

  • 1913

Formed two subsidiaries: Pioneer Grain Company Ltd and Eastern Terminals Ltd By then the company had twenty-six licensed elevators, sixteen of which were in Saskatchewan

  • 1921

Pioneer had expanded to over 100 country elevators

  • 1931

Forty -four elevators of the Saskatchewan and Western Elevator companies were amalgamated into Pioneer; these elevators had been operated by the Richardsons since the mid-1920s

  • 1947

Pioneer acquired twenty-three elevators from the failed Reliance Grain Company

  • 1952

Pioneer purchased 146 elevators when the Western Grain Elevator Company was sold; Federal Grain also took some of Western’s elevators

  • 1953

Pioneer acquired another twenty-two elevators of the Independent line

  • 1972

When Federal was sold in 1972, Pioneer became the largest private grain company

  • 1979

A 112,000-metric tonne Pioneer Grain port terminal was officially opened in Vancouver It was capable of loading ships at 140,000-bushels per hour

  • 1990s

Over a 10-year period starting in the mid 90s, Richardson Pioneer built numerous concrete grain terminals across the prairies These modern facilities were much larger and more efficient than the old wooden elevators Most wooden elevators were closed and have since been torn down In 1994 the first terminal was constructed at Glossop, Manitoba Terminals were also constructed at Lamont, Carseland, Swift Current, North Battleford, Lloydminster, Saskatoon, Melfort, Tisdale, Southey, Balgonie, Weyburn, Whitewood, Foam Lake, Brunkild, Brandon

  • 2005

A large growth and acquisition process began in 2005 with the purchase of 4 terminals from ConAgra Foods and 4 adjoining crop input centres were purchased from United Agri Products in 2006

  • 2007

James Richardson International was involved in a bidding war with Saskatchewan Wheat Pool over the purchase of Agricore United in 2007 Although unsuccessful, through the deal Richardson acquired grain elevators in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta, and was paid a $35 million termination fee from Agricore

  • 2008 Rebranding

James Richardson International was rebranded as Richardson International and Pioneer Grain became Richardson Pioneer

  • 2010 to 2012

Richardson Pioneer continued to expand the Western Canadian footprint with the purchase of 5 crop input centres and 1 grain terminal in Alberta plus 3 crop input centres and 1 grain terminal in Saskatchewan The Saskatchewan purchases were all part Northeast Terminals a local farmer owned facility

  • March 2012

Richardson International along with Glencore and Agrium announced they were purchasing Viterra in a 3 way split of that company Richardson would acquire 19 grain elevators, the oat and wheat milling business in Canada and the US, a terminal in Thunder Bay and a share of Cascadia terminal in Vancouver This deal closed May 1, 2013

  • 2013

Richardson Pioneer celebrated their 100th year with celebrations across Western Canada

  • 2013 - 2016

new terminals were constructed in Estevan, Dauphin along with a large addition to the Vancouver export facility

  • 2017

acquired Crop First Agro in Grenfell, Sk they then went on to acquire European Oat Millers in Bedford, England; becoming Richardson Milling UK Richardson International's first mill outside of North America

Food Processing

Richardson Oilseeds and Richardson Milling

  • In 1999 Canbra Foods in Lethbridge was acquired Canola crushing as well as packaging oils and margarine happen here The Canola Harvest brand is Richardson's retail brand of products
  • In 2008, Canbra Foods was rebranded The canola crushing operations became known as Richardson Oilseeds and the food manufacturing business became known as Richardson Nutrition
  • Richardson Oilseeds opened a new canola crushing plant in Yorkton, Saskatchewan in July 2010 At the time of opening this plant was designed for 2,300 mt per day In 2014, an expansion will be completed for 3,000 mt per day to be processed
  • In 2011 Richardson Nutrition purchased Innovative Foods in Mississauga, Ont and Sussex, New Brunswick to further expand its canola oil packaged goods business An $15M expansion of the packaging plant in Lethbridge was started this same year
  • On May 1, 2013 a new division was formed as part of the Viterra transaction - Richardson Milling
  • In June 2015, Richardson purchased Golden Gate Margarine- a retail packaging business based on Oakville, Ontario adding to the Richardson Nutrition locations


  1. ^ Osborne, Brian, S 1990 Dictionary of Canadian Biography, Vol XII 1891-1900 University of Toronto/Université Laval 
  2. ^ https://wwwbroadcasting-historyca/listing_and_histories/radio/cjrm-am
  3. ^ http://wwwbushplanecom/operators/histories-wca/
  4. ^ https://wwwtheglobeandmailcom/news/national/george-taylor-richardson-adventurer-with-phd-in-common-sense/article18833857/page=all
  5. ^ Staff Writer "Sask Wheat Pool, Agricore agree on new takeover deal" CBC May 9, 2007

External links

  • Richardson International website
  • James Richardson & Sons Ltd website
  • Canola Harvest website

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