B.C. is chock-full of com­pa­nies and or­ga­ni­za­tions just wait­ing for the fed­eral govern­ment to give mar­i­juana the (green) thumbs up

BC Business Magazine - - Contents - by Nathan Cad­dell

Pot le­gal­iza­tion would be a boon for th­ese B.C. com­pa­nies

Cannabis prob­a­bly won’t be of­fi­cially le­gal in Canada by the time you read this. The fed­eral govern­ment has more or less con­ceded that July isn’t a re­al­is­tic date to kick off recreational cannabis sales, but it’s still hold­ing out hope for Au­gust. Heaven for­bid that PM Justin Trudeau and com­pany miss their lofty, su­per-spe­cific goal of sum­mer 2018. You can al­most hear the ex­cuses now (“Well, you know, it’s sum­mer in Africa”).

It’s easy to see how the cannabis mar­ket has ex­ploded in the past few years—just look at the stock of an in­dus­try leader. In May 2014, Aurora Cannabis, with of­fices in Toronto and Van­cou­ver, was trad­ing at about three cents a share. Four years later, it was hov­er­ing around eight bucks.

When and if Canada’s favourite plant does go le­git, a bevy of B.C. com­pa­nies and or­ga­ni­za­tions are poised to take ad­van­tage, some in ways you might not ex­pect.


BASED: VIC­TO­RIA LAUNCHED: 2018 WHAT IT'S ROLLING OUT: Be­cause blockchain is ev­ery­where all the time, it's not a shock that pro­po­nents of the on­line ledger are al­ready try­ing to get in on the cannabis game. Vic­to­ria-based Emer­ald Health Ther­a­peu­tics, which has dis­trib­uted medic­i­nal cannabis since 2007, has teamed up with

Van­cou­ver's DMG Blockchain So­lu­tions to de­velop an e-com­merce mar­ket­place for the mar­i­juana in­dus­try.


BASED: VAN­COU­VER LAUNCHED: 2018 WHAT IT'S ROLLING OUT: The Choom Gang was a group of friends, in­clud­ing for­mer U.S. pres­i­dent Barack Obama, who smoked cannabis in Honolulu in the 1970s. The lo­cals called

the plant choom, hence the name. Now, Chris Bog­art, cofounder of bio­med­i­cal out­fit In­med Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals, is bring­ing the spirit of Hawaii to B.C. Choom, which grows “hand-crafted cannabis,” has four fa­cil­i­ties in the works. Its grow­ing op­er­a­tions in Chemainus and Ver­non should be ready to go by this fall, just in time (well, maybe) for le­gal­iza­tion.


BASED: VAN­COU­VER LAUNCHED: 2017 WHAT IT'S ROLLING OUT: The CCABC rep­re­sents craft cannabis grow­ers. No one is go­ing to wait around for years for a craft pot scene to emerge like it did for beer. It's go­ing to hap­pen right away, and grow­ers are al­ready ex­per­i­ment­ing with strains. Think beers are too fruity th­ese days? Just wait. Soon you might be en­joy­ing a mango-in­fused joint or a blue­berry-laced bong hit.


BASED: LANTZVILLE LAUNCHED: 2016 WHAT IT'S ROLLING OUT: Dun­lop, which de­vel­ops and man­u­fac­tures LED tech­nol­ogy, has turned its at­ten­tion to hor­ti­cul­ture light­ing with an eye toward im­pend­ing mar­i­juana le­gal­iza­tion. The com­pany claims to make the best LED grow lights on the mar­ket, and they aren't cheap: its two main mod­els come in at $625 and $965, re­spec­tively.


BASED: VAN­COU­VER LAUNCHED: 2014 WHAT IT'S ROLLING OUT: Come le­gal­iza­tion, com­pa­nies that sim­ply grow and sell cannabis will need to dif­fer­en­ti­ate them­selves in some way. In­vic­tus was one of the first names on the scene, in­cor­po­rat­ing four years ago and brand­ing it­self “Canada's cannabis com­pany.” That ap­par­ently wasn't enough to sep­a­rate the busi­ness from its com­peti­tors, so ear­lier this year In­vic­tus ap­pointed rock-'n'-roller Gene Sim­mons as its chief evan­ge­list of­fi­cer. Sim­mons, a loud voice against drug and al­co­hol use, has re­cently come around to the medic­i­nal benefits of cannabis.


BASED: VAN­COU­VER LAUNCHED: 2017 WHAT IT'S ROLLING OUT: Think Tank is a nu­tri­ent for­mu­la­tor and ir­ri­ga­tion sys­tem that au­to­mat­i­cally gives buds a set dose of wa­ter and other el­e­ments they need to grow. This al­lows large-scale pro­duc­ers to eas­ily man­age a wealth of plants. It's also a boon for the craft cannabis mar­ket be­cause you can swap out in­gre­di­ents to pro­duce dif­fer­ent strains.

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