Co-operative Vegetable Oils Ltd.:

An Inventory of Its Records at the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections

Inventory prepared by Jeffrey Long
University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections
Winnipeg, Manitoba
(1994)

Finding aid encoded by Rita Mogyorosi (May 2003)
Finding aid written in English.

Revision History

  • July 26, 2005 - MSS 95, PC 90, TC 64 converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).

Table of Contents

Collection Summary

Administrative History of Co-operative Vegetable Oils Ltd.

Scope and Contents of the Records

Organization of the Records

Restrictions on Access

Restrictions on Use

Custodial History

Detailed Description of the Records

Minute Books (MSS 95): 1943-1975

Annual Reports (MSS 95): 1951-1983

Merger (MSS 95): 1949-1982

Published Reports/Articles - Economic (MSS 95): 1946-1988

Published Reports - Commodity (MSS 95): 1952-1982

Staff Benefits (MSS 95): [1960?]-[1971?]

CSP/C.V.O. Brochures - Promotional (MSS 95): [1943?]-[1992?]

Newspapers/Newsclippings (MSS 95): 1950

Miscellaneous (MSS 95), [1943?]-[1992?]

Scrap Books (MSS 95): 1944-1985

Files (MSS 95): 1977

Slide shows (PC 90): [1970?]-1979

Photographs - Executive (PC 90): 1968-1980,

Photographs - Portraits (PC 90): 1967-1981,

Photographs - Couples/Duos (PC 90): 1966

Photographs - Groups/Trios (PC 90): 1948-[196-?]

Photographs - Awards/Presentations (PC 90): 1968-1979

Photographs - Buildings (PC 90): 1964

Photographs - Promotional (PC 90): 1948

Tape Collection (TC 64): 1979-1980,


Collection Summary

Repository:
University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections,
Elizabeth Dafoe Library, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2

Creator:
Co-operative Vegetable Oils Ltd.

Title:
Co-operative Vegetable Oils Ltd. fonds

Dates:
1943-1988

Quantity:
84 cm of textual records and other material

Identification:
MSS 95, PC 90, TC 64

Language
English.

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Administrative History of Co-operative Vegetable Oils Ltd.

Co-operative Vegetable Oils Ltd. began in Altona, Manitoba in 1943 under the direction of J.J. Siemens. Siemens was an active member in the Mennonite community having been both a school teacher and a farmer. Siemens was also part of the Rhineland Agricultural Society (est. 1931) which was established to develop better agricultural practices--especially through education and experimentation. Equally important was Siemens' belief in the co-operative movement, most notably the development of various Credit Unions.

C.V.O. began in 1943 largely because Second World War Canadian imports of edible vegetable oils (from Russia and Argentina) were noticeably reduced, creating a need for domestic production. To support the domestic industry, the Federal Government offered such incentives as price subsidies, transportation subsidies and facilities for processing the crop in Hamilton, Ontario. Although the 1943 crop was shipped to Hamilton, the high costs of long distance transportation of sunflowers--the principle oilseed crop--proved discouraging. Consequently, with a view to the future when these subsidies would be lifted, C.V.O. decided in favour of a local processing plant. This scheme, half-heartedly endorsed by the Provincial Government, satisfied the needs of the local community, which backed the project enthusiastically. The Altona plant was to cost a projected $60,000, half of which would be raised from private funds, with the remainder coming from guaranteed loans from the Provincial Government. The community eagerly threw its support behind the plant as it offered long-term economic growth and stability. As farming became increasingly mechanised, farm labour diminished leaving little employment for the young thus contributing anxiety to the otherwise closely knit Mennonite family structure. Furthermore, wheat prices had not increased significantly since the Depression, and the family farm was suffering. However, The C.V.O. plant provided jobs for locals and an outlet for the alternative crop, the sunflower; later adding soybeans and canola in the 1950's.

C.V.O.'s list of achievements include: the development of Safflo oil as its first consumer product in 1949; the first oilseed crushing plant in Canada; the first company to process commercially sunflowers in North America; the first North American company to process pure sunflower-based cooking oil; and, a strong role in the development of canola as an "oilseed".

To meet growing needs, C.V.O. officially merged with Manitoba Pool and Saskatchewan Pool April 1, 1975, coming under the new name CSP Foods. CanAmera Foods purchased CSP Foods 20 March 1992.

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Scope and Contents of the Records

The fonds consists of minute books, annual reports, correspondence, published and unpublished reports and articles, brochures, newspaper clippings, scrap books and photographs.

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Organization of the Records

These records are organized into twenty series.

  • Manuscript Collection (MSS 95)
  • Minute Books, 1943-1975
  • Annual Reports, 1951-1983
  • Merger, 1949-1982
  • Published Reports/Articles - Economic, 1946-1988
  • Published Reports - Commodity, 1952-1982
  • Staff Benefits, [1960?]-[1971?]
  • CSP/C.V.O. Brochures - Promotional, [1943?]-[1992?]
  • Newspapers/Newsclippings, 1950
  • Miscellaneous, [1943?]-[1992?]
  • Scrap Books, 1944-1985
  • Files, 1977
  • Photograph Collection (PC 90)
  • Slide shows, [1970?]-1979
  • Photographs - Executive, 1968-1980
  • Photographs - Portraits, 1967-1981
  • Photographs - Couples/Duos, 1966
  • Photographs - Groups/Trios, 1948-[196-?]
  • Photographs - Awards/Presentations, 1968-1979
  • Photographs - Buildings, 1964
  • Photographs - Promotional, 1948
  • Tape Collection (TC 64), 1979-1980

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Restrictions on Access

There are no restrictions on this material.

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Restrictions on Use

Users must abide by relevant copyright legislation.

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Custodial History

The records of the merged companies were donated to the Archives by CanAmera Foods in 1993.

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Detailed Description of the Records

Minute Books (MSS 95): 1943-1975

Co-op Vegetable Oils Ltd. , 1943-1975
BoxFolder
11 Board Minutes, 11 September 1943-10 November 1956
2 Board Minutes, 23 November 1956-14 November 1964
3 Board Minutes, 26 November 1964-18 November 1967
BoxFolder
21 Board Minutes, 18 November 1967-11 December 1971
2 Board Minutes, 16 December 1971-5 May 1975
Gardenland Packers , 1963-1967
BoxFolder
23 Board Minutes (no binding), 1963-1967

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Annual Reports (MSS 95): 1951-1983
Co-op Vegetable Oils Ltd. , 1951-1974
BoxFolder
31 1951
1 1952 - Balance sheet only (photocopy)
1 1953 - with Balance sheet
1 1954
2 1955 - 1968
3 1969 - 1970 (with annual meeting agenda)
3 1971, 1972, 1973 (with summary), 1974
Pool Elevators , 1975-1983
BoxFolder
34 1975, 1976 (with condensed annual meeting agenda), 1978, 1980 (with condensed annual report), 1983

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Merger (MSS 95): 1949-1982
BoxFolder
35 Excerpts from annual reports, annual meetings, 1968-1981
6 Memoranda re: Co-op Vegetable Oils - Manitoba Pool, 1974
7 1974 annual meeting registration: Merger Meeting
8 Voting Lists - annual reports & related correspondence 1968-1974. Includes agenda for 1972 & 1973 annual meetings
9 Correspondence to shareholders re: annual meetings
10 "A Prairie Saga" - C.P. Morin - History of Co-op Vegetable Oils Ltd.
11 "Making it Happen" - unpublished history of CSP by L. Hicock
12 Three histories of the oilseed industry - one by L. Hicock (unpublished, 1982) - includes correspondence with CSP
13 Three letters. One provides a short biography of R.W. Siemens, 1978-1981
BoxFolder
41 Co-op Vegetable Oils Ltd. Report to District representatives, 1951-1952
2 Co-op Vegetable Oils Ltd. News Bulletin, 1952
3 "The Expeller" (Company periodical), 1949-1950
4 News Release - re: Cost reduction plan with attached letter to shareholders, 7 December 1982
5 Unpublished reports on sunflower oil, 1952

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Published Reports/Articles - Economic (MSS 95): 1946-1988
BoxFolder
46 Manitoba Industrial Topics vol. 1, no. 1, May-June, 1946
6 Manitoba Industry and Commerc Bulletin, January, 1954
6 Manitoba Industry and Commerce Bulletin, April, 1958
6 News for Farmer Cooperatives, February, 1954
6 News for Farmer Cooperatives, special A.I.C. report (see p. 31), November, 1962
6 "The Rural Society in Transition," E.J. Nesius, 1966
6 Trade and Commerce Magazine, 1988
6 Cooperative Enterprise, n.d.

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Published Reports - Commodity (MSS 95): 1952-1982
BoxFolder
47 Sunflower Seed Production, 1952, 1957
7 Economic Aspects of Sunflower Production in Manitoba, foreward by Sol Sinclair (see Sol Sinclair Collection), 1960
7 Rapeseed: Canada's "Cinderella" Crop, May 1970
7 Sunflowers - The Canadian Experience, July 1978
7 Canadian Rapeseed Oil, August 1978
7 Harvest: CSP Foods Ltd. vol. 1, no. 1, April 1982

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Staff Benefits (MSS 95): [1960?]-[1971?]
BoxFolder
48 Pension Plan for Co-op Vegetable Oils Ltd. employees, [1971?]
8 Group Insurance Plans for Co-op Vegetable Oils Ltd., employees, [1960?]

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CSP/C.V.O. Brochures - Promotional (MSS 95): [1943?]-[1992?]
BoxFolder
49 Recipe Books

8 books, 1 incomplete

10 Brochures/handbooks explaining the oilseed industry
11 Brochures illustrating Canola meal as fodder
12 Brochures re: Canola, Sunflower oil & C.V.O./CSP Foods
13 Brochures promoting MB, Morden and Altona

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Newspapers/Newsclippings (MSS 95): 1950
BoxFolder
414 Newspaper clippings re: C.V.O./CSP Foods
Newspaper articles re: 1950 Flood
BoxFolder
415Altona Echo , 3 May, 14 June 1950
15Morris Herald vol. 71, no. 18, 4 May 1950
15Winnipeg Free Press , 22 May 1950

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Miscellaneous (MSS 95), [1943?]-[1992?]
BoxFolder
416 Decal for Canola(?) logs, Company Christmas Card, greeting cards and obverse of three envelopes addressed to C.V.O./CSP

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Scrap Books (MSS 95): 1944-1985
BoxFolder
51 Newsclippings (blue scrapbook), 1944-1952
2 Newsclippings (green scrapbook), 1947-1958
3 Newsclippings (blue Centennial scrapbook), 1970-1972
4 Newsclippings, letters, articles, new release, negatives and memorabilia relating to CSP plant expansion, 1977
5 Newsclippings, 1979-1985

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Files (MSS 95): 1977
BoxFolder
56 Miscellaneous newsclippings
7 Material regarding Red River Exhibition display
8 Consistent Grain Growers file, 1977
9 "Edible Oil Field" - article

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Slide shows (PC 90): [1970?]-1979
BoxFolder
11 Series 1: "C.V.O. 30 Year History,"

100 slides

BoxFolder
12 Script for "C.V.O. 30 Year History"
3 Series 2: "C.V.O./CSp Tour 1974,"

45 slides (includes 22 extra slides numbered as PC 90 Miscellaneous, 1-22)

BoxFolder
14 Script for "C.V.O./CSP Tour," 1974
5 Series 3: "Harvest Come Home," 1979,

48 slides

6 Series 4: "Harvest Come Home" - B version, 1979,

52 slides

7 Series 5: "Tomorrow's Harvest"

65 slides

8 Series 6: "Tomorrow's Harvest" - B version,

64 slides

8 Series 7: Slides of 1970(?) Soybean factory explosion

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Photographs - Executive (PC 90): 1968-1980,
BoxFolder
19 Board members, 1968,

5 photos

10 Board members, 1971,

5 photos

11 Board members, 1974,

5 photos

12 Board members, 1978,

2 photos

13 Board of directors, n.d.,

4 photos

14 Board members/annual meetings, n.d.,

10 photos

15 Annual meeting, 1980,

6 photos

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Photographs - Portraits (PC 90): 1967-1981,
BoxFolder
116 J.J. Siemens,

3 photos including 1 poster/biography

17 R.W. Siemens,

9 photos

18 N. Buhr,

5 photos

19 J. Enns,

2 photos

20 E.H. Epp, P. Doll and E.H. Toews,

1 photo each

21 B.H. Friesen, D.K. Friesen and J. Friesen,

7 photos

22 J.J. Peters,

3 photos

23 F. Nickel (1967), Dr. E.D. Putt and K. Sarsons (1981),

1 photo each

24 E. Wiebe, 1967, 1972,

3 photos

25 3 unidentified portraits, 1969
26 3 unidentified portraits,

5 photos

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Photographs - Couples/Duos (PC 90): 1966
BoxFolder
127 2 unidentified; R. Siemens and D. Friesen; D. Reimer and M. Zacharias (1966); B. Wiebe and H. Buhler,

5 photos

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Photographs - Groups/Trios (PC 90): 1948-[196-?]
BoxFolder
128 J.J. Siemens, E. Putt and ?, 1948
29 Arbour Gang, 1952
30 15 Year Club, 1961 and ?,

2 photos

31 Northern Regional Laboratory - Say Cot Convention (early 1960s)
32 International Sunflower Conference - Morden, Manitoba, 1966,

2 photos

33 External Affairs Tour, n.d.
34 Unidentified group shots,

9 photos

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Photographs - Awards/Presentations (PC 90): 1968-1979
BoxFolder
135 Service Award recipients,

3 photos

36 C.V.O. award presentation to R.P. Lemoring, 1968
37 Seed Competition, 1979,

2 photos

38 Mr Manitoba Sunflower, 1979,

4 photos

39 Ceremony with Ed Schreyer, 1977,

8 photos

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Photographs - Buildings (PC 90): 1964
BoxFolder
140 Old Office Building - Exterior,

12 photos

41 Old Office Building - Interior,

10 photos

42 New Office Building - Exterior,

11 photos

43 New Office Building - Interior,

14 photos

BoxFolder
21 Plant exterior, black and white 2.5" x 3.5",

44 photos

2 Plant exterior, 5 x 7,

9 photos

3 Plant exterior, 7.5 x 10,

32 photos

4 Plant exterior, 2.5 x 3.5 and 3.5 x 5 - colour,

53 photos

5 Plant exterior special,

5 photos

6 Plant interior - black and white, 2.5 x 3.5 and 3.5 x 4.5,

24 photos

7 Plant interior, 5 x 7 and 6.5 x 8
8 Plant interior, 8 x 10,

31 photos

9 Plant interior, 2.5 x 3.5 and 3.5 x 4.5 - colour,

115 photos

10 Plant interior - laboratory, colour,

12 photos

11 "Prestalog" fire, 1964,

20 photos

12 Construction,

21 photos

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Photographs - Promotional (PC 90): 1948
BoxFolder
213 Products/Advertising,

29 photos

14 Farmers and farm machinery,

20 photos

15 Seeds,

11 photos

16 Canola,

9 photos

17 Sunflowers - black and white,

27 photos

18 Sunflowers - colour,

51 photos

19 Altona and CSP Plant - aerial shots,

48 photos

20 Altona - town shots with parade and family life,

29 photos

21 Product transportation - Rail,

8 photos

22 Product transportation - Truck,

13 photos

23 Grain terminal (Fort William); Processing plant (Chili - 1948); unidentified man in Cesna(?),

1 of each

24 Oilseeds Conference, January 1978,

10 photos

25 Negatives,

36 photographic and 3 slide

25 Film: C.V.O. Presents: "Sunflowers" (held in MSS 95, Box 5), n.d.

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Tape Collection (TC 64): 1979-1980,
BoxFolder
11 CSP Foods audio dub for "Harvest Come Home" (tape 1), 1979
2 CSP Foods audio dub for "Tomorrow's Harvest" (tape 2), 1980

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