Odd Burger bringing new plant-based food facility to Innovation Drive

Originally founded in London, the quickly expanding vegan fast-food chain will establish a new plant-based food manufacturing facility on Innovation Drive under the Preposterous Foods brand

Photo: Odd Burger founders Vasiliki and James McInnes

TORONTO-BASED ODD BURGER Corp., the vegan fast-food franchise business originally launched in London and formerly known as Globally Local, has secured land from the city to open a vegan manufacturing facility under the Preposterous Foods brand, the company announced on Wednesday.

The facility will occupy a 5.5-acre parcel of land on Innovation Drive purchased from the city for $632,500 and will house a 50,000-square-foot production facility. The company says the facility will be operated by Odd Burger’s “food technology and manufacturing subsidiary” called Preposterous Foods.

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“We are thrilled to commence this next chapter of growth for our company and we believe that London is the best place in the world to execute our vision for a more sustainable future,” says James McInnes, co-founder and CEO of Odd Burger, and operator of the original Globally Local location in London.

“We will be creating one of Canada’s most advanced plant-based food manufacturing facilities and we believe that through this investment we will be able to make a tremendous change in the industry by creating more affordable, healthy and sustainable food.”

Odd Burger bringing new plant-based food facility to Innovation Drive plant-based Food ProcessingPhoto: A rendering of the Preposterous Foods facility to be built on Innovation Drive

Odd Burger has gone through a significant period of growth and change over the last year after taking the company public in 2021, shedding its former Globally Local brand, relocating its head office presence to Toronto and launching an ambitious franchising strategy. Currently, Odd Burger operates a 460-square-metre production facility on Consortium Court where it makes food for its restaurants.

 The brand now has seven restaurants operational in Ontario, a handful set to open in B.C. and Alberta, but has signed “area representative agreements” that could see as many as 92 locations open in the coming years, including 40 more locations in Ontario. It also says it is working on similar deals in the United States, taking the company international.

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The opening of the facility could mean that Odd Burger’s vegan products are soon available on store shelves, as the company said that “with the new expansion, Preposterous Foods also plans to launch a retail product line, which will be targeted for sale in grocery stores and direct-to-consumer sales channels. Preposterous Foods currently makes some of its products available to food operators through Sysco Canada.

“Odd Burger is an innovative addition to our thriving proteins cluster in London,” notes Kapil Lakhotia, president & CEO of the London Economic Development Corp., who the company said they “worked closely with” to secure the land deal. “Our industrial lands, infrastructure, talent and supply chains continue to put London on the radar for sustainable food production and plant-based proteins development.”

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According to a company statement, Preposterous Foods has engaged Mallot Creek Group Inc. to assist the company with plant design and equipment specifications, as well as process engineering. Mallot Creek is one of Canada’s premier food and beverage manufacturing experts and has been involved in some of Canada’s largest industrial food projects. Once the design phase is complete with Mallot Creek, Preposterous Foods will submit permits to the City of London and begin the construction process. The facility should take between one to two years to build once permits are approved and is expected to create between 50 and 100 jobs once fully operational.

“This investment by Odd Burger is just the latest in a long list of recent examples demonstrating why London’s economy continues to be among the best in all of Canada,” added Josh Morgan, London’s acting mayor. “As a council, and with strong support from LEDC, we have worked exceptionally hard to ensure businesses and industries choose London when it comes time to launch or expand their operations.” Odd Burger bringing new plant-based food facility to Innovation Drive plant-based Food Processing Kieran Delamont

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