Manitoba Business: Federal Grain Limited
In 1929, several grain companies merged to form the Federal Grain Limited. They included the Federal Grain Company, Consolidated Elevator Company, Northwest Elevator Company, Golden West Grain Company, Southern Elevator Company, Brooks Elevator Company, International Elevator Company, McLaughlin Elevator Company, Western Grain Company, State Elevator Company, Stewart Grain Company, Topper Grain Company, and Union Grain Company. It later acquired Wiley Low and Company (1932). The three key players in the formation of Federal were John Gage, Henry Sellers, and James Stewart.
When incorporated, Federal Grain acquired the country elevators of Maple Leaf Milling Company (54) and Gold Grain Company (14), bringing the company’s holdings to 355 elevators. In 1966, Federal Grain merged with the Searle Grain Company, combining Searle’s 457 country elevators with the 741 belonging to Federal, along with its three terminal elevators at Thunder Bay (Ontario) and one terminal elevator at Vancouver (British Columbia). The combined entity became Canada’s largest privately-owned grain company.
In early 1972, the company’s grain assets were purchased for $90 million by Manitoba Pool Elevators, Saskatchewan Wheat Pool, and Alberta Wheat Pool and the remaining corporate assets were held by Federal Industries Limited. Manitoba Pool took over the operation of its country elevators in Manitoba.
Country Elevators (Manitoba)
“Huge grain merger planned here,” Winnipeg Free Press, 26 July 1966, page 1.
“Pools bid for Federal,” Winnipeg Free Press, 17 February 1972, page 61.
Grain: The Entrepreneurs by Charles W. Anderson, Winnipeg: Watson & Dwyer Publishing, 1991.
Federal Grain Limited, Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan
We thank Mike Lisowski for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 11 December 2016Back to top of page