Mo­cho seeks a slice of the ganja pie

The Star (Jamaica) - - News Central Star - CECELIA CAMP­BELL-LIV­INGSTON STAR Writer

Agroup from the com­mu­nity of Mo­cho in Claren­don is putting big hopes on break­ing the poverty cy­cle by cash­ing in on the ganja in­dus­try. Have­lock Binns, a farmer from Ste­warton, and An­thony Bar­rette, an en­tre­pre­neur, say they hope to use the Mo­cho Ganja Grow­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion as their ve­hi­cle to ac­cess the weed mar­ket.

“This will be like we bingo up here in Mo­cho ... . I am happy be­cause I was think­ing only the big player was go­ing to be in­volved in this new in­dus­try and this is why I am hop­ing it will be a re­al­ity soon,” Binns said.

Sim­i­larly, Bar­rette be­lieves that ac­cess­ing the multi­bil­lion-dol­lar cannabis mar­ket would be a great op­por­tu­nity for com­mu­nity.

Mean­while, Coun­cil­lor Ro­maine Mor­ris, who is lead­ing the ef­forts to en­sure that the group gets the ap­pro­pri­ate li­cences to grow ganja, said the farm­ers hope to get baux­ite lands to do this.

“I am hope­ful that Ja­malco will part­ner with us. Also, to ob­tain the ap­proval of the li­cences will be a chal­lenge, but I am hope­ful,” he said.

Cit­ing the high un­em­ploy­ment in the divi­sion, with the pri­mary source of earn­ing be­ing smallscale farm­ing, Mor­ris said that get­ting a foothold in the ganja in­dus­try is just what the com­mu­nity needs.

Last Au­gust, Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter Aud­ley Shaw said he gave in­struc­tion for the Cannabis Li­cens­ing Au­thor­ity (CLA) to put in place a li­cens­ing regime that caters specif­i­cally to small-scale ganja farm­ers.

He said that he in­structed the CLA to de­velop a li­cens­ing sys­tem that would be less strin­gent in terms of the cap­i­tal that in­vestors in the fledg­ling med­i­cal ganja in­dus­try are re­quired to put up in or­der to qual­ify for li­cences.

CON­TRIB­UTED

Prime Min­is­ter Andrew Hol­ness (left) lis­tens at­ten­tively to Colonel of the Ac­com­pong Town Ma­roons Ferron Wil­liams at an event to com­mem­o­rate the 281st an­niver­sary of the sign­ing of the peace treaty with the Bri­tish and the birth­day of past leader, Cud­joe, in Ac­com­pong Town, St El­iz­a­beth, on Sun­day, Jan­uary 6.

CON­TRIB­UTED

Ro­maine Mor­ris, coun­cil­lor for the Mo­cho Divi­sion in Claren­don.

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