PEI Establishes Russian Connection
Businesses on Prince Edward Island, Canada, have established a link with businesses in Russia and have built four modern potato storage facilties that will hold 44 million pounds of potatoes under one roof.
The association has been aided by a group called DokaGene Companies, a partnership between PEI businessman Allan Parker and Alexander Chuenko of Moscow, Russia.
DokaGene Companies also includes a farm called DokaGene Technologies and a trading and construction company called DokaGene Systems.
The project was successfully coopleted, due in large part to the efforts of Perry's Construction of Tignish, Gorman Controls of South Melville, Powers Concrete Finishers of Mermaid and Linkletter Engineering Inc., of Charlottetown.
The construction continued in 2003 with completion of the fourth and final stage of the storage complex for DokaGene Farm. A new 12,000-square-foot laboratory complex was built, and an 18,000-sqaure-foot factory for putting a pellet coat on sugarbeet seeds.
The three primary companies listed above were all involved. DokaGene Systems is also the distributor for Troika Brand Equipment made by several companies in PEI incluidng Trout River Industries Ltd., Linkletter Welding Ltd., Allan Potato Handling Equipment and Emery Equipment Ltd.
In 1997 the first year of operation, the DokaGene partnership grew 30 acres of potatoes on leased land with mostly leased equipment and with the potatoes picked by hand by cadets from a local military academy.
DokaGene was able to purchase the farm where it had been growing potatoes and the equipment in 2002. It is now a major supplier of seed and processing potatoes to potato chip companies in Moscow and supplies fresh table potatoes to the Moscow market.
PEI looks to a bright future in expanded sales to the Russian market as the potato industry modernizes and potato processing expands.
Governments of each country contributed grants for the business development and exchange program.