The market demand for hemp products in North America is expanding rapidly and industry leader Manitoba Harvest Hemp Foods & Oils is staying ahead of the curve by expanding their operations and hiring experts to bolster their team. The company has announced that they have hired Tom Greaves as their new Plant Manager. The new hiring comes at a critical time for Manitoba Harvest (www.manitobaharvest.com), as the hemp foods pioneer is in the process of moving to their new state-of-the-art organic facility in Winnipeg. The 20,000 sq. ft. food processing facility on Eagle Drive will increase their production capacity by more than 500%.
“Tom’s extensive experience in a wide range of relevant tasks including manufacturing facility management, farming, production, food safety, quality control, and other aspects of agribusiness will be a huge asset to our company,” says Mike Fata, President and co-founder of Manitoba Harvest. Greaves is from the local community, and earned a degree in agriculture from the University of Manitoba. He most recently served as plant manager for Puratone Corp. “Ensuring freshness and maximizing quality have always been priorities for us, and those are some of Tom’s major strengths,” adds Fata.
Consumer demand for hemp foods was virtually nonexistent in 1998 when 22 year-old Mike Fata began pressing oil from nutritious hemp seeds and selling it to local health food stores in Winnipeg. Now Manitoba Harvest, the company he started with friends Martin Moravcik and Alex Chwaiewsky, has emerged as an entrepreneurial success story in Canada - employing 28 people and on track to surpass $5 million in sales for 2008. Manitoba Harvest recently earned a spot in the “20th annual PROFIT 100 ranking of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies” by PROFIT Magazine, due to their explosive sales growth of 453% from 2002-2007.
Manitoba Harvest makes premium hemp food products including Organic Hemp Seed Oil, Shelled Hemp Seed, Hemp Seed Butter, a line of Hemp Protein Powders and their new award-winning Hemp Bliss organic hempmilk. The company also sells hemp ingredients to a growing number of food and cosmetic companies that make waffles, bread, frozen desserts, cookies, pasta, salad dressings, protein powders, energy bars and sauces. “Foods that offer omega-3 essential fatty acids, like hemp, are hot because medical evidence touting the health benefits continues to grow,” notes Fata. Hemp foods are also a nutritious source of protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals. “People are learning that hemp is a nutritional powerhouse – and it has a great flavour and gourmet appeal,” says Fata.
Founded in 1998, Manitoba Harvest’s mission is to create the healthiest hemp foods, to educate the public about healthy lifestyle choices and to support sustainable agriculture. Manitoba Harvest was honored with the 2006 Socially Responsible Business Award at Natural Products Expo East for their work pioneering sustainable organic hemp agriculture in North America. Their products are distributed to thousands of stores in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Japan and are also sold as bulk ingredients to food and cosmetic manufacturers. To learn more, please visit www.manitobaharvest.com.