Cigi signs memorandum of understanding with leading Chinese agribusiness group

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Wilmar officials, including Mr. Mu Yan Kui (third from left), after signing the MOU, with (r. to l.) Earl Geddes, Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, and Canadian Ambassador to China Guy Saint-Jacques.

WINNIPEG – A Memorandum of Understanding signed by Cigi (Canadian International Grains Institute) and Yihai Kerry (Wilmar International) will initiate formal negotiations towards building a long-term business relationship that would see Cigi provide technical services and expertise in Canadian field crops to the company. Yihai Kerry is a leading agribusiness and food company with over 20 years of local operating history in China.

The MOU was signed in Beijing, China during a trade mission lead by the Hon. Gerry Ritz, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food that was focused on promoting Canadian agricultural products to the Chinese marketplace. Minister Ritz participated in the meeting with Yihai Kerry and Cigi and witnessed the signing of the agreement by Mr. Earl Geddes, Chief Executive Officer, Cigi, and Mr. Mu Yan Kui, Deputy Chairman, Yihai Kerry.

The memorandum paves the way for Cigi and Yihai Kerry to negotiate the provision of a number of services including the introduction of pulse and durum flour into existing Yihai Kerry products, the identification of new product concepts suitable for the Chinese market, and collaboration on research projects in Canada and China. 

“Working with Yihai Kerry and Wilmar International will enable Cigi to further its work on behalf of farmers and the Canadian field crop industry to promote Canadian crops and products in this growing and dynamic market,” says Mr. Geddes.  “Cigi has extensive experience working in the Chinese market over several decades.  This knowledge enables us to identify opportunities to work with Yihai Kerry to increase the diversity, healthiness and profitability of their products using Canadian wheat, durum and pulses.” 

Yihai Kerry is a leader in multiple market segments in China and one of the largest rice and wheat flour millers in the region.  Its business model spans the entire value chain from raw material sourcing, through to processing, marketing, branding, sales and distribution.

Over the next several months representatives from Cigi and Yihai Kerry will work to finalize the scope of activities to be undertaken with respect to wheat, durum and pulse crops. 

Cigi is an independent market development institute created in 1972. Its mission is to create profitable opportunities for Canadian field crops through the delivery of technical expertise, support and customized training to the domestic industry and customers around the world. Cigi is funded by farmers, the Government of Canada (AAFC) and industry partners.

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 For more information contact:

Earl Geddes
Chief Executive Officer
Canadian International Grains Institute
Cell: (204) 955-1191
Ph: (204) 983-4980
Email: egeddes@cigi.ca

Ellen Goodman
Communications Specialist
Canadian International Grains Institute
Ph: (204) 983-1145
Email: egoodman@cigi.ca