To meet the demand of a growing patient-base, Green Relief, a licensed producer of medical cannabis, has officially acquired possession of a new facility in Stoney Creek, Ont., that will significantly boost the company's production capacity.
The 100,000-square-foot facility is located at 565 Seaman St., and is zoned commercial-industrial to accommodate cannabis production. Once the Stoney Creek site is at full capacity, Green Relief, which operates out of a 30,000-square-foot facility in the rural community of Flamborough, Ont., will increase its annual output from 2,800 kg to a total of about 17,800 kg.
"The acquisition of the Stoney Creek facility will allow our team to provide a growing number of medical cannabis patients with the products they need to improve their quality of life," says Warren Bravo, Chief Executive Officer, Green Relief Inc. "As a bonus, the new facility will generate job growth, while also providing ancillary activities to drive the local economy."
The Stoney Creek facility, which formerly housed a sporting complex, will require a $9-million retrofit to become operational in compliance with Health Canada regulations. To get the job done, Bravo says Green Relief is committed to sourcing Hamilton-based engineering firms and contractors.
Bravo anticipates the retrofit to commence in January 2019, with the facility up and running by March 2019, and a first harvest slated for mid-to-late summer.
As well as installing top technology for cannabis production, the Stoney Creek site will receive electrical upgrades, and be equipped with state-of-the-art security and HVAC systems. The latter will ensure cannabis production odours do not impact the surrounding neighbourhood.
In the coming months, Bravo says Green Relief will be hosting an on-site community event to address questions the public may have about the Stoney Creek facility, and introduce the neighbourhood to the company. This event will be coupled with a job fair to attract talent.
Once operational, the Stoney Creek facility will generate about 100 full-time jobs for the local workforce. Through Green Relief's partnership with the Ontario Disability Employment Network, these roles will provide people of all abilities with meaningful work.
"Our growth in a rapidly developing sector means employment opportunities at the Stoney Creek facility will cover a range of roles, from frontline production technicians to environmental scientists, and everything in between," Bravo says.
In addition to the Stoney Creek site, Green Relief's expansion plans include construction of a 240,000-square-foot production facility at the company's Flamborough site. A 25,000-square-foot facility on an adjacent property in Flamborough is also underway, and will be used for research and development.
Similar to Green Relief's facility in Flamborough, which uses LED lights in its grow rooms and is earth-sheltered for efficiency, the Stoney Creek site will adopt the company's sustainable production practices. This includes the use of aquaponics as a growing method.
Once the system's fish reach market size, Green Relief donates the protein source to Second Harvest, a food rescue service that delivers meals to those in need. Over the last three years, Green Relief has donated more than 40,000 fish through this initiative.
"At Green Relief, we do more than provide patients with safe and effective medical products to support their health and well-being," Bravo says. "Creating jobs, being a good neighbour, and giving back to the community is at the heart of everything we do."
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