Canada’s Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP) has partnered with the Robinson family’s Australian Food & Fibre (AFF) to acquire cotton producer Auscott.

The sale includes all properties, plus Auscott’s ginning, warehousing, classing and marketing businesses – AFF receive a total land area of 40,000ha, with 22,000 hectares of developed irrigation land and more than 143,000 megalitres of water entitlements.

AFF will add the portfolio to it’s existing major cotton growing and ginning operation based at Moree in North West NSW.

Auscott chief executive Ashely Power said the deal creates significant production, processing and marketing scale across an integrated supply chain.

“This will support mill and brand customers in terms of a much larger, reliable, traceable supply from production through to the mill,” he said.

“This efficient supply chain will also support growers and the industry as Auscott continues to provide ginning and marketing services as it has done for 58 years”.

Although industry speculation had put a price tag on the Auscott assets at about $500 million

There has been no price has been disclosed by AFF or its major backing partner PSP Investments, although sources speculate a $500 million price tag.

PSP is one of Canada’s largest pension investment managers with net assets totalling about $170 billion – its portfolio includes horticultural and broadacre cropping farmland in Australia.

PSP invests on behalf of government employees including military personnel and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

AFF had previously snapped up Auscott’s showcase 17,300ha Gwydir Valley property, Midkin, and the Ashley gin in late 2019.