STAFF

Dennis McKnight
Dennis McKnight
Chief Executive Officer
Plant Protein Alliance
of Alberta

Dennis McKnight

If variety is the spice of life then Dennis has had a very ‘spicy’ career. Dennis has worked as a political operative in both Canada and the U.S., including a key U.S. presidential election campaign. He used the knowledge from election campaign polling to start a market research company for clients such as McDonald’s, Bayer Crop Science, Canadian National Railways and General Motors.

He joined the international speaking circuit examining future trends, and developed a television series called The Innovators and a series concept called Dr. Food. He has travelled the world, taking world-class companies and organizations with him in the pursuit of the best in food innovation.

As the CEO of the Plant Protein Alliance of Alberta (PPAA), Dennis is passionate about building the Canadian prairies into a leading global source of plant-based proteins and ingredients.

PPPA’s focus is connecting companies, growers, investors, universities and colleges, making them aware of the huge potential in the plant protein industry. The alliance is broad-based, including commercial interests, farm organizations, universities and colleges, economic development groups, banks, and investors. The focus is on business-to-business opportunities, mainly involving small- and medium-sized enterprises.

One of PPAA’s initial jobs will be to offer support to companies and to understand what is truly holding them back and what help they need to succeed. Strategic partners include the Alberta government (which has provided start-up funding), similar organizations in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, the federally funded Protein Industry Canada (PIC), existing processing firms, the investment community, universities, colleges and research organizations.

 

Alan Hall
Alan Hall
Chief Operating Officer
Plant Protein Alliance
of Alberta

Alan Hall

Alan has been a key leader of the Alberta Crop Industry Development Fund (ACIDF) over the past decade. The fund has been focussed on supporting crop-sector research, development and product development growth with farmers and companies. The current portfolio of over 600 projects and more than $100 million of ACIDF investments in these projects has led to significant commercial results.

Previously, as executive director of the Alberta Agricultural Research Institute, Alan headed up Alberta government research funding in the agricultural sector. Prior to that, Alan was executive director of the Plant Industry Division and regional director for central Alberta, and was responsible for the agricultural crop research and extension efforts of the Ministry of Agriculture.

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