A day with the 47th International Grain Industry Program


This week, 21 representatives from 16 countries are participating in the Cigi (Canadian International Grains Institute) 47th International Grain Industry Program. During the course of the program, the group will participate in a variety of demonstrations, tours, and technology sessions with an emphasis on western Canadian wheat and pulse crops. Not only do the participants learn about the quality and characteristics of these crops, but they also have an opportunity to network with Canadian marketers. 

On Wednesday, I tagged along with the group for an outing to the Paterson GlobalFoods primary elevator and for a visit to the Riddell Seed Farm in Warren, Manitoba. 

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We departed from our office in downtown Winnipeg. With everyone aboard the bus, we were soon outside of the city and on our way to the Paterson GlobalFoods primary elevator. 

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A perfect Manitoba summer day for an outing. Beautiful scenery on the way there. 

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We made it to the Paterson GlobalFoods elevator — it sure looks good against the prairie sky! 

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Participants got a first-hand look at the inner workings of the elevator. Terry Hudson, Elevator Manager (pictured left) gives an overview of operations and answers questions.

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Ashwanth Raghavan Vijayaraghavan (above) is visiting Canada from Singapore, where he works as a trader.

“The program is good so far. Lots of information, lots of learning, and lots of activity – and lots of eating!,” said Vijayaraghavan with a laugh. “Today was really informative. You hear all of these things back home, but seeing it here is something else. It’s always nice to see and have a feel of these things, because being in the business you need to always know what is happening.” 

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A worker unloads a canola shipment.

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Spotted a nearby bird!  

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It’s Khalifa Hollywood’s (above) first time in Canada, visiting from Oman. 

“I love it. I’ve only been here for four days, but everyone seems super friendly and the scenery is really nice.”

Hollywood, who is a business development specialist, is also enjoying the 47th International Grain Industry Program.

“It’s really good, really informative and interesting — a lot of stuff that I didn’t know before. You get to see the end-to-end process and everything like that as well. I’m not really involved in the technical side back in Oman, so it’s interesting to be involved in some of that here. I’ve never seen it in this much detail before.” 

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From the Paterson GlobalFoods Elevator, we got back on the bus and headed to Riddell Seed Farm in Warren, Manitoba. Craig Riddell greeted us and gave us an informative tour of his farm and facilities.  

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Mosquitoes tried to get the best of us as we were shown Riddell’s belt conveyor, but we prevailed. It wouldn’t be a proper introduction to a Manitoba farm without a few mosquitoes, right?!

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No better way to wrap up the day than showing the participants the tractors and equipment! It was a great day to be experiencing some of Western Canada’s agriculture.

At the end of this week, the program participants will get to see demonstrations in Cigi’s pilot mill, noodle lab, and bakery. Next week, they will travel to Vancouver to visit an Alliance terminal elevator and the Canadian Grain Commission offices before the program comes to an end.