A long-rumoured medical marijuana growing facility for Yorkton is hearsay no longer. Canopy Growth Corp. (CGC) announced it is converting an old dairy producer’s building into a cannabis growing operation.
The announcement included a promise of 40 to 50 new jobs in the city, which Andrew MacCorquodale, CGC’s head of operations for Western Canada, said would include local hires.
CGC, operating as Tweed Grasslands, was looking at a 90,000- square-foot facility with plans to grow to 300,000 square feet and expand into the recreational market.
“Tweed Grasslands will supply medical markets in Canada and abroad as they emerge in a federally legal manner, as well as the Canadian recreational cannabis market upon the establishment of a national regulatory framework,” a company press release stated.
Yorkton Mayor Bob Maloney does not support legalization, but has no concerns about the Yorkton facility.
“I have no problem with that at all,” he said. “It’s all above board and at the end of the day they’re bringing jobs to the city, which is always a good thing. That’s how Yorkton grows.”
Maloney noted the benefits of 40 to 50 jobs are felt everywhere from the housing market to schools, restaurants, retail stores and even hotels.
“All those spinoffs are terrific for the city,” he said.
Canopy Growth was not the original proponent of the grow operation, but came by it by purchasing Trees Producers Ltd. Inc., including the company’s late-stage application under Health Canada’s access to cannabis for medical purposes regulations.
“We knew we wanted to grow this in Saskatchewan, which is what we felt is the epicentre of Canadian agriculture,” MacCorquodale said. “Yorkton was a good fit because of the [vacant dairy] building.”