New Brunswick

Pot producer promises up to 136 jobs in Fredericton, with assist from province

Ontario-based cannabis producer Canopy Growth announced will hire up to 136 employees over six years to work in its marijuana production plant under construction in Fredericton.

Canopy Growth to create jobs over 6 years, while province provides up to $1.3 million in payroll deductions

The province says it's trying to get what economic benefits it can out of the legalization of cannabis. (Colin Butler/CBC)

Ontario-based cannabis producer Canopy Growth announced it will hire up to 136 employees over six years to work in its marijuana production plant under construction in Fredericton.

The government will provide up to $1.3 million in payroll rebates over the six years if the company meets some performance criteria.

Canopy Growth purchased the property in the Vanier Industrial Park last year.

Bruce Linton, the CEO of the company, said the province is well-organized in terms of its view of cannabis.

"They were the first to sign up for how much they wanted to buy," he said. "They were the first to make the decision on how they were actually going to turn this into a business sector."

Economic benefits

Part of the ventilation system at the cannabis production plant being built in Fredericton. (Jordan Gill/CBC)

The province boasted about the economic benefits of the Canopy Growth jobs.

Opportunities New Brunswick, the Crown corporation focused on economic development, said the total direct and indirect payroll generated over the six years will fall just short of $54 million, providing $11 million in direct and indirect tax revenue for the province.

Premier Brian Gallant said he thinks the cannabis industry will grow in the province.

"There's no doubt that we are going to do what we can to have production of cannabis happen here in this province to create jobs," said Gallant.

Variety of jobs

Bruce Linton, the CEO of Canopy Growth, said the company doesn't look for employees who already have experience growing cannabis, but it won't rule them out either. (Jordan Gill/CBC)

The government said the new jobs included lab supervisors, growers, quality assurance experts, maintenance crews and shipping and retail staff.

Linton said they run from entry-level positions to those requiring experience and a degree.

"They go from you coming in and I need you to show up on time and learn," Linton said.

"You may end up having some of the jobs when you go up the stream where somebody has gone and studied some scientific chemistry."

Maybe people are growing it because they're fascinated with plants.- Bruce Linton, Canopy Growth CEO

Experience growing marijuana, which is still illegal, won't necessarily give applicants a head start, but it also won't disqualify.

"We don't look for them, we don't say no to them," Linton said.

"Maybe people are growing it because they're fascinated with plants."

Canopy Growth hopes to have the production plant up and running by the time cannabis becomes legal in October.

About the Author

Jordan Gill

Reporter

Jordan Gill is a CBC reporter based out of Fredericton. He can be reached at jordan.gill@cbc.ca.