Led by a private investment firm, Killer Whale Holding, Captain Drake, LLC acquired a million-bushel grain terminal, with dedicated rail, in North Dakota to provide its clients with a facility to handle the exploding demand for non-GMO commodities.
Mark Anderson, president of Captain Drake, said the new facility is strategically located.
“By providing growers and end-users this key facility, Captain Drake will consolidate and streamline the sourcing of non-GMO grain in the Red River Valley,” he says. “We will be able to obtain the best non-GMO commodities from three regions: North Dakota, Minnesota, and Manitoba, Canada.”
The grain terminal will also allow Captain Drake to source non-GMO supplies locally, instead of importing, to meet the growing US demand for non-GMO products.
“The supply chain needs to be tightened up and moved domestically,” Anderson says. “We consider this to be another strategic asset for our food and beverage clients seeking suppliers committed to guaranteeing the integrity and purity of non-GMO commodities throughout the supply chain.”
The facility will also support efforts by bigger food companies to switch to non-GMO ingredients, according to Anderson.
“There are a lot of things happening behind the scenes in the marketplace with big companies going non-GMO. Initially, this was not a direction they really wanted to go into because they didn’t know the availability of non-GMO ingredients,” he says. “But for the last two years, they have been trying to get a handle on it and changeover (to Non-GMO).”
Anderson believes “it is very possible that the next boom in ND won’t be oil, but non-GMO, and identity preserved corn and soybeans.” While the US and Canada still have no mandatory labeling laws, more than 64 countries do, and 88% of US consumers demand to know if their food contains GM ingredients. The domestic Non-GMO market is growing by double digits and is the fastest growth food category with approximately $13 billion in annual sales.
Anderson says he sees the rapid non-GMO growth in his business.
“Our demand is up 10-fold from the previous year,” he says.
Captain Drake sells a range of Non-GMO Project verified ingredients including citric acid, sodium and potassium citrates, cane sugar, dairy powders.
The company is the only US supplier of citric acid that is not made from GM corn. Captain Drake’s citric acid is made from sugar cane.