W. Murray Clark Ltd. established the company that bears his name in 1950. Murray Clark was the son of Fred Clark who first became involved in the poultry industry in 1925 with the establishment of a chick hatchery in the basement of his home located west of Caledonia, Ontario. Murray grew up in the business and spent the early part of his career travelling and working for hatcheries around the world as a chick sexer. When poultry and egg producers began a post war shift to mechanization, Murray decided to focus his efforts on supplying farmers with poultry production equipment.
The original site of W. Murray Clark Ltd was in Caledonia on Edinburgh Square, close to the town hall. Murray Clark operated out of a small barn in his back yard. The business offered the "Premier" line of poultry production equipment, which included nests for layers, water troughs, floor feeding systems, brooders, and the first pullet cages available in Canada. Watering troughs were eventually replaced by "Johnson Cups" and "Hart Cups" which were distributed across Canada by W. Murray Clark Ltd.
The company moved to a larger facility in 1953, and again in 1961 to a warehouse on Orkney Street in Caledonia that housed the business until 1988, at which time a new facility was built on the outskirts of Caledonia.
During the 1970s, the company bought National Ideal and began manufacturing Premier cages in Caledonia.
In 1981, W. Murray Clark Ltd. signed an agreement to handle the Favorite line of equipment which included cages. Production of the Premier cages was discontinued.
By 1985 the industry had followed the European trend to nipple style drinkers and W. Murray Clark Ltd. eventually became a major distributor for the Ziggity brand.
The company took on the Farmer Automatic line of cages in 1989 which included classic cages with automated manure removal.
The Clark Companies purchased Farmer Automatic Canada and began distributing equipment across the country.
W. Murray Clark Ltd. became an exclusive distributor for the revolutionary Butterfly feeders across Canada.
In 2009 W. Murray Clark Ltd. and Farmer Automatic Canada Inc. were combined into one national distribution company named Clark Ag Systems Ltd.
In 2010 The Clark Companies partnered with Farmer Automatic in Germany to form Farmer Automatic GmbH & Co. KG, and for the first time became involved in the global manufacturing, marketing and distribution of the Farmer Automatic line of poultry housing, with a special focus on the development of alternative housing systems.
The first Farmer Automatic aviary system, which included the Portal Pullet rearing system and the Step Layer aviary system, was installed in Alberta. This was followed by several installations of the Loggia aviary system and Combi Pullet rearing system across Canada.
As the demand for alternative housing in Canada accelerated, Clark Ag Systems and Farmer Automatic partnered with the University of Guelph in a research project to study layer behaviour in the various types of alternative housing systems being offered. Famer Automatic and Clark Ag Systems provided the University's Arkell Research Facility with small poultry housing installations that allowed researcher Dr. Tina Widowski to carry out this important research project.
The first fully enriched Farmer Automatic ECO system was installed in Quebec.
AGCO Corporation acquired Farmer Automatic GmbH & Co. KG from the Clark Companies. Clark Ag Systems continued as the exclusive distributor of Farmer Automatic equipment in Canada. In the same year Clark Ag Systems expanded its operations with the addition of parts warehouses in Winnipeg, Manitoba.