Cuke crop grows 25 jobs in Enniskillen

Blake Ellis/Local journalism initiative photo Lambton County Warden, Enniskillen Mayor Kevin Marriott, shares a laugh with Aamjiwnaang First Nation Chief Chris Plain during the Sarnia-Lambton Chamber of Commerce annual state of Lambton County Breakfast Tuesday in Plympton-Wyoming.

Blake Ellis/Local Journalism Initiative

Enniskillen Mayor Kevin Marriott says 25 jobs have been created with a new cucumber operation.

Marriott, who is also the warden of Lambton County, was one of the eight local mayors and three heads of First Nation communities which spoke to business leaders during the Sarnia-Lambton Chamber of Commerce annual State of Lambton Business Breakfast held at the Plympton-Wyoming Fairgrounds on March 19.

“There are 60,000 acres of crops grown every year,” said Marriott of Enniskillen Township. The largest acreage is always in soybeans at 32,645 acres in 2023.

“Lambton County more often than not has the highest number of soybeans of any county in Ontario,” said Marriott.

There was also 16,745 acres of winter wheat last year. If this was entirely milled for bread, it could actually make 67 million loaves.

There was 6,490 acres of corn grown last year in the township, where half of this is grown for livestock, said the mayor.

“The 60,000 acres in Enniskillen would feed 120,000 people with well over $100 million in economic output,” said Marriott.

Another operation he touched on was the Enniskillen Produce Company on Lasalle Line. The commercial greenhouse, which was home to Tilray cannabis and now is home in part to Australian cannabis producer Cannim, has been revamped over the last few months. Marriott says seven acres of cucumbers have been planted with picking expected to start in four to six weeks.

The cucumber production has created 25 jobs. The seven acres are expected to produce five million cucumbers in the next year. An additional six acres with be ready to plant in 10 months, bringing the total production of the operation to 10 million cucumbers a year.

Marriott told the chamber members that while Enniskillen is primarily known for its field crops, it has a full range of livestock.

Marriott talked about dairy operation built on Petrolia Line in 2023 which milks 150 cows robotically 24 hours a day producing 1.6 million litres of fluid milk a year.

“The robots only shut down for three 20 minutes in 24 hours for cleaning,” said Marriott
There is a total of 295 full and part-time farmers in Enniskillen. And while agriculture in Enniskillen has an gross output of $100 million, there are issues in the industry.
Marriott said input costs continue to rise because of the increase in interest rates, tariffs on Russian fertilizer and the carbon tax.

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