Capital Spending

Greenleaf (Maple Leaf) Breaks Ground on Largest Plant Protein Plant

By Dave Fusaro, Editor in Chief

Apr 08, 2019

Meat analogue producer Greenleaf Foods SPC, which is owned by Canadian meat producer Maple Leaf Foods, today broke ground in Shelbyville, Ind., on what should be North America’s largest plant-based protein facility.

The factory, slated to become operational in late 2020, will be 230,000 sq. ft. and will cost $310 million. It will more than double the company’s production capacity for the Lightlife Foods and Field Roast brands.

It also will create 460 jobs, more than doubling the employment size of Greenleaf (currently 370 employees).

The 57-acre site, designed for expansion to meet future market growth, will produce 60 million lbs. of refrigerated plant-based products annually. In January, Lightlife Burger, Ground, Italian Sausage and Bratwurst Sausage were launched as parts of a new pea protein-based product line that "delivers the sensory experience and taste consumers crave, marking the brand’s most significant innovation launch in its 40-year history," the company says. That new line will be among the products made at the new facility.

The new plant will extend the company’s network of production facilities, which include Seattle, Wash., and Turner Falls, Mass.

Greenleaf was formed in 2018 to operate the Lightlife and Field Roast businesses under one banner. Those two brands make plant-based burgers, hot dogs, tempeh, sausages, roasts, loaves, deli slices, crumbles and cheeses.