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Leading Canadian agribusiness Richardson International is set to invest US$220M in its Wesson cooking oil facility in Memphis, Tennessee.

As part of a multi-phase project, the oil production plant would be replaced with a new refinery to meet increasing global demand for vegetable oil, the company said on 17 April.

Upon completion, the refinery would modernise the site and significantly increase production and refining capacity, Richardson said.

According to its website, Winnipeg-based Richardson is a worldwide handler and merchandiser of all major Canadian-grown grains and oilseeds and a vertically integrated processor and manufacturer of oats, wheat and canola-based products.

The planned expansion and modernisation of the Memphis site followed other projects from Richardson’s oilseed processing division, including a three-year expansion of its facility in Yorkton, Saskatchewan – which would more than double its crushing and refining capability – and increased crushing and refining capability at its facility in Lethbridge, Alberta.

Richardson’s acquisition of Wesson, a leading US retail brand of canola, corn and vegetable cooking oils, from Conagra Brands in 2019 included Wesson’s Memphis production facility, World Grain reported at the time of the transaction.