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Gray and Champion Petfoods Celebrate Ribbon Cutting on New NorthStar Specialty Pet Food Operation

Gray and Champion Petfoods Celebrate Ribbon Cutting on New NorthStar Specialty Pet Food Operation

Today, Gray, a fully integrated services provider specializing in engineering, design and construction, is celebrating with Champion Petfoods, maker of the award-winning ORIJEN and ACANA brands of dog and cat foods. Alberta-based Champion hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new state-of-the-art kitchens in Acheson, Alberta. 

After breaking ground on the 426,247 s.f. facility in 2017, the new operation includes a batching and cooking facility, distribution warehouse and logistics centre and expanded offices. The NorthStar Kitchens are the most advanced of their kind, featuring three dry food production lines along with on-site distribution warehouse and logistics centre fitted for handling multiple fresh and local ingredients, including fresh meats, vegetables and high quality ingredients sourced from 14 Alberta farmers, ranchers, and suppliers.

“We are pleased to have chosen Gray to build our new NorthStar Kitchens,” said Blaine McPeak, Champion CEO. “Their proven expertise made them a perfect partner to construct our newest state-of-the-art Kitchens. The new Kitchens will allow us to meet the global demand for the ‘World’s Best Petfoods.’”

Champion and Gray have been strategic partners for more than seven years, first completing Champion’s world-class DogStar Kitchens in the U.S.

“Having partnered with Champion Petfoods for nearly a decade, it’s been a pleasure to work closely with Champion as the company continues to revolutionize food processing,” said Stephen Gray, President and CEO of Gray. “It’s satisfying to play a role in seeing Champion’s mission, vision and values become a reality through the successful completion of the new NorthStar Kitchens.”

Over 90% of the construction, equipment and services were procured locally. At peak construction, more than 375 workers were on site, and 200 local jobs will operate the kitchens.

Several local leaders and other distinguished guests were in attendance for the event.

About Gray

Gray is a fully integrated service provider deeply rooted in engineering, architecture and construction services. As a family-owned company, we focus on the manufacturing, food & beverage, automotive, distribution, mission critical and commercial markets for domestic and international customers.

In recent years, we have increased our service offerings in the food and beverage market with the addition of InLine Engineers for trusted engineering expertise in complete end-to-end process and packaging line functionality, Spec Engineering for prefabrication of various process equipment assemblies and enhanced process equipment component engineering, and also formed Gray Solutions for complete digital solutions.

For more information on Gray, visit and follow us @grayconstructio.

About Champion Petfoods

Champion Petfoods is an award-winning pet food maker with a reputation of trust spanning more than 30 years. Its ORIJEN and ACANA brands feature unmatched inclusions of fresh regional ingredients and are made exclusively in Champion’s own kitchens. Founded in the small town of Barrhead, Alberta, Champion now serves Pet Lovers in more than 90 countries around the world.

To learn more, visit