This morning, Economic Development and Training Minister Ralph Eichler came to Dauphin and announced a 4.2 million dollar tax rebate for the Vermillion Growers greenhouse project.

The rebate will save Vermillion Growers up to 4.2 million dollars over a maximum of 20 years.

Eichler says it was really important to make this announcement and kick-start the economy.

“Vermillion Growers have been working on this project for a while and us as a government, have been working on it a while as well. So, here we are opening our economy and kicking off this investment with Vermillion Growers. We’re just tremendously excited about that opportunity.”

The project is the construction of the first large-scale greenhouse in Manitoba. It’ll be a high-tech hydroponic commercial greenhouse designed for vegetable production, initially consisting of tomatoes with plans to expand to other produce. The first phase of the project is a 10-acre facility and plans are to expand to 60 acres after five years of production.

Eichler says they chose Vermillion Growers because the project has a focus on economic development, long-term job creation, and will substantially improve property values.

“(Vermillion Growers will) provide safe affordable food, grown locally. Critically important to all sectors, that we have good safe food and reliable food and products that we know are grown and looked after in Manitoba is critically important.”

Maria Deschauer, managing director for Vermillion Growers, says they aren’t receiving 4.2 million dollars in cash, instead, the rebate will save them money from property taxes annually.

“Those funds will be used to ensure that our operations are successful in terms of our financial model. As well as that means that we then have more money that can go towards expansion, faster, through this program as well.”

Deschauer says the timeline for completing the project is a little uncertain because of the COVID situation but anticipates most of the project to be completed by March 2021.