The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) is to pay $2.5bn (€2.2bn) for 40% of Glencore Agricultural Products.

The Canadian institution will take the stake in Glencore Agri, a grain and oilseed business.

The deal is expected to close later this year.

Glencore focuses on grains, oilseed products, rice, sugar, pulses and cotton, with activities including origination, processing, storage, logistics and marketing. 

As IPE Real Estate reported last year, growing demand for protein in emerging economies has attracted institutional investors to the asset class, with farmland one of the more popular investments.

Glencore Agri’s portfolio also includes agriculture infrastructure assets in Canada and Australia, and operations in South America and Europe.

Mark Jenkins, senior managing director and global head of private investments at CPPIB, said: “As an asset class, agriculture is an excellent fit for a long-term investor like CPPIB, and we are excited about the opportunity to acquire a significant stake in Glencore Agri, a leading agricultural business.”

Jenkins said Glencore Agri complemented CPPIB’s existing portfolio of agriculture assets, bringing global exposure, scale and diversification.

“We see this as a compelling opportunity that aligns with CPPIB’s long-term investment horizon,” he said.