Hemp processor, uniform maker get $4.5 million for textile operations in Canada

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Total financing of CA$6.1 million (~US$4.5 million) has been announced in support of a hemp supply chain to produce uniforms in the Canadian province of Alberta.

The federal government said it is providing CA$5 million in support of Askiy Hemp Limited Partnership (Askiy), which plans an industrial hemp processing plant in Elk Point, while the province will invest CA$1.1 million in uniform maker Logistik Unicorp, according to recent announcements.

The initiative is intended to turn hemp locally grown in the Elk Point and Frog Lake region into a wide range of products, beginning with textiles. Frog Lake First Nations and other neighboring indigenous communities will dedicate 125,000 acres to hemp farming, the government said. 

40k tons per year

Funding for the Askiy Hemp LP facilities is in the form of a CA$5 million federal loan through the Community Economic Development and Diversification fund, administered in Alberta by Prairies Economic Development Canada.

The industrial complex, a 13,000-sq-ft. building on 7.5 acres in Elk Point’s Diversity Industrial Park, is to include technology for decortication, refinement and cottonization of industrial hemp. The factory is planned to process 40,000 tons of hemp stalks annually for use in textiles, building materials, fertilizer, and paper.

“Increasing demand for hemp will provide a new revenue stream for farmers and diversify Alberta’s agricultural sector,” according to the federal government, which said the factory, to employ 45 workers, is expected to be operational by summer 2025.

Boost to economy

The Logistik investment by the province will help create 33 permanent jobs and 50 temporary jobs in Elk Point. Logistik Unicorp Inc., Quebec, is the largest uniform company in Canada with more than ten years experience in the hemp industry.  

Officials said the hemp initiatives are aimed at rejuvenating and diversifying the economy of the Elk Point area – which is primarily dependent on oil and gas – by creating value-added products from the agriculture sector.

Alberta is the leading province in Canada’s hemp industry, accounting for roughly 40% of national production, primarily for grain. Farmers in the province grew hemp on roughly 8,000 hectares (~20,000 acres) in 2023, a year in which 22,500 hectares (~55,400 acres) were planted nationally, according to figures from Statistics Canada.

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