Quebec First Nations community talks partnership with Canadian cannabis producer

Sep 18 2018, 4:18 am

The Mohawk Council of Kahnawà:ke (MCK) in Quebec has said it is currently studying a partnership to establish a Health Canada licensed “state-of-the-art” medicinal cannabis greenhouse of at least 50,000-sq-ft, with an additional 20,000-sq-ft of post-harvesting space.

In a statement, the MCK said it is in discussions with Canopy Growth, Canada’s largest medicinal marijuana company, which would see Canopy Growth purchase up to 100% of the cannabis produced at the Kahnawà:ke facility.

The partnership would mark Canopy Growth’s first First Nations partnership in the province.

“Canopy Growth is a leader in the field of medical cannabis with established brands and sales channels and provides a tremendous opportunity to generate revenue for the community and add a significant number of jobs,” the MCK said.

As to where funding for the project would come from, the MCK said a number of sources have been identified. Capital construction and infrastructure for the project could potentially be funded by a combination of investments from Canopy Growth, the Kahnawà:ke business development fund, bank financing, and individual community members.

“In other words, the MCK is currently considering the possibility for community members to help fund the community portion of the project,” the council said. “This would allow community members, who may not have the opportunity to obtain licenses under the Cannabis Control Law to invest in the local industry.”

The MCK said the greenhouse is expected to create approximately 75 direct full-time jobs for Kahnawa’kehró:non and generate “millions of dollars” in revenue for community programming and services.

“Indirect employment would be created as a result of the preparation of the land and the construction of the facility, in addition to other spin-off benefits,” they added.

As to how the partnership would work, “MCK and Canopy Growth would establish a partnership to operate the greenhouse,” the council said. “This partnership would also apply for the necessary Health Canada licenses.”

Without such a license, the MCK noted the product “would not be permitted to be exported off of the Territory and would be unprofitable once recreational legalization occurs.”

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