Budding business: Another cannabis cultivator settles in St. Stephen
'A lot of money that is coming into the area, is going to stay in the area'
The community of St. Stephen, N.B., is seeing a boom in pot production.
A second cultivator has set up shop in the town. Tamara Follett, who owns and operates Sunleaf Microcultivation, has been approved to produce cannabis.
Her business joins Tidal Health Solutions as the second producer in the St. Stephen area.
"It's great for our area," said St. Stephen mayor Allan MacEachern.
"It's a new thing to the province and it's really good to see that type of growth rate in our town."
MacEachern said the two businesses are providing employment for the area. He said the town has grown over the past three years and the cannabis producers are adding to that.
He hopes it will bring more people to the town.
"It's also going to bring people from out of town to our area, continuously looking at the product, so you get that traffic as well," said MacEachern.
Follett was approved to be a licensed cannabis producer on Sept. 13.
She spent nine months trying to get her business approved. She plans to grow cannabis outdoors and will be able to sell it to a distributor.
Follett moved to St. Stephen from Ontario a year before marijuana was legalized and is happy to set up in the town.
She already has her site built. She had to in order to be approved for a licence.
"I'm buying a lot of stuff in St. Stephen," said Follett, who has been shopping at the local hardware stores to get ready.
"A lot of money that is coming into the area, is going to stay in the area."
Follett said she'll be able to grow about 100 plants on the property. The product will go to Pasha Brands in British Columbia.
Tidal Health Solutions has its processing licence so it sells directly to Cannabis NB.
In the past two years, Tidal Health Solutions has purchased several pieces of land and buildings in the St. Stephen Industrial Park as operations have grown. Cannabis NB already sells two strains of their product and will soon sell more.
The company employs about 30 people in the area.
"It actually brings jobs to the market place," said Steve Johnston, chief commercial officer for the company. "The more products we can sell to Cannabis NB, the more jobs we're going to need in St. Stephen area."
With files from Cassidy Chisholm