Canadian Manufacturing

Hiram Walker investing in Ontario distillery, expanding production

Investment will see production capacity at Windsor, Ont., facility boosted by 230,000 cases annually

WINDSOR, Ont.—Booze maker Hiram Walker & Sons Ltd. it is investing in its Windsor, Ont., distillery to increase production capacity there by 230,000 cases annually.

The undisclosed investment is part of a larger cash injection of $8-million planned at the facility this year, and includes $1-million grant from Ontario’s Rural Economic Development (RED) program.

“We have been a strong part of the Windsor manufacturing community for over 150 years, and this investment is part of our continued commitment to the growth of the company and the region,” company president Patrick O’Driscoll said in a statement.

“The new production volume will benefit our workforce as we smooth out the variability in seasonal peaks to offer more stable employment, and result in enhanced partnership opportunities for our customers.”

The facility will begin producing the McGuinness and Meaghers brands of liqueurs in the fall of 2014 as a result of the investment, according to Hiram Walker.

That is in addition to a variety of other brands, including Polar Ice vodka, Lamb’s rum, Malibu liqueurs and Wiser’s Canadian whiskies.

The plant is the only “grain to glass” operation in Ontario, and bottles over 4.5 million cases of spirits and distills 48 million litres of absolute alcohol annually.

According to the company, it buys 4.2 million bushels of local grain annually from the surrounding Essex and Kent counties.

Hiram Walker is wholly owned by Pernod-Ricard S.A.

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