An oat milling facility near Altona, MB is undergoing a significant expansion.

Ryan Penner is CEO of Buffalo Creek Mills.

"We're very excited to have our unloading facility improved," he commented. "We've been in operation for about three and half years and over those three and a half years producers have had to work with kind of slower unloading facilities. Now we'll have a fully modernized unload facility that can unload these large trucks in 10 to 15 minutes."

Penner says the company will also be doubling its production capacity, hoping to double the amount of truck loads they're bringing in from 130 to 260 per month. They currently produce about 80 metric tons of oat groats per day.

Buffalo Creek Mills sells oat groats into the human edible, pet food and animal feed markets. The company is now pelletizing the oat hull byproduct and selling that into the biofuel and feed industry.

Penner talked about the increasing popularity of oats for the health conscious consumer.

"Oats have been known to have benefits to weight loss, heart health and just general nutrition," he said. "I think that society is seeing those benefits and that's showing as far as the growth in the overall oat market."

Penner says the majority of their finished product is sold in North America, however the company is hoping to expand its presence in the international marketplace with the signings of a number of recent free trade agreements.

Buffalo Creek Mills currently employs about 18 people and is operational 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.