Cultivation Archives - Green Market Report

Video StaffVideo StaffAugust 13, 2018

3min1150

iAnthus Capital Holdings (ITHUF) recently broke ground for its new medical marijuana facility in Warwick, New York. The company and its subsidiary, Citiva are celebrating the groundbreaking of its medical cannabis facility.

Citiva is one of only ten licensed medical cannabis producers in New York State. This location used to be the Mid-Orange Correctional Facility, and will eventually support up to 125,000 square feet of total cultivation and processing space, with an estimated yearly medical cannabis production of 2,400 kg.

“We’re excited to be taking the first steps in building out our robust and comprehensive medical cannabis program in the State of New York. The iAnthus and Citiva teams have worked incredibly hard to reach this milestone,” said Hadley Ford, CEO of iAnthus Capital. “The growth and success of our Warwick facility will lay the foundation for the rest of our operations across New York State, and we look forward to continued expansion, development, and most importantly, service to our patients, through our vertically integrated operations.”

According to the company statement, Phase 1 of the buildout is projected to be completed in the first half of 2019. The Warwick site can eventually support up to 125,000 sq. ft. of total cultivation and processing space and will be built out in several phases. Citiva purchased the eight and a half acres of land for the Warwick facility in May of 2018 for US$526,000.

Warwick is pleased to welcome one of the nation’s leaders in the medical marijuana industry to the Warwick Technology Park and is honored that Citiva has found a home in our town,” said Michael SweetonTown of Warwick Supervisor. “Our goal in acquiring the Mid-Orange Correctional Facility was to bring well-paying jobs to the area, and we look forward to seeing this come to fruition through the official groundbreaking of Citiva’s medical cannabis facility.”


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtJuly 26, 2018
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3min1130

Emblem Corp. (EMMBF)  signed a non-binding Letter of Intent to acquire all of the issued and outstanding securities in Natura Naturals Inc. that it does not already own for C$25 million in cash, C$12.5 million in mortgage financing and 26,102,941 common shares of Emblem. Emblem recently announced a C$3 million investment in the company and an agreement for 3,000 kg of cannabis supply per year.

The deal is valued at C$76 million (inclusive of Natura shares already owned by Emblem). As a result of this acquisition, Emblem will further its aggressive approach to sales growth both domestically and internationally backed by robust supply from the Natura greenhouse.

“Through the due diligence process of investigating Natura as a supply partner, we uncovered significant synergies between the two organizations,” said Nick Dean, CEO of Emblem Corp. “Providing high-quality products to Emblem’s medical and adult-use audiences continues to be our top priority. With the added capacity from Natura, we are able to aggressively pursue our focus on product innovation, building great brands and finding distribution partners domestically and internationally.”

Ontario-based Natura operates a 662,000 sq ft licensed greenhouse that is currently undergoing a phased conversion and retrofit that is expected to bring up to 15,000 kg of annualized cannabis production online in 2018. Once completed in 2019, the facility is expected to bring total annualized cannabis production capacity to approximately 70,000 kg per year. Natura will also bring 32 proprietary cannabis strains to Emblem’s library, significantly increasing Emblem’s intellectual property.

According to the company, Emblem currently has supply agreements with Shoppers Drug Mart nationally, the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission, and has an LOI to form a joint venture with German pharmaceutical wholesaler Acnos Pharma GmbH. Emblem also has submitted an application to supply the Ontario Cannabis Stores in Ontario. Under Emblem’s portfolio, it is expected that Natura will be a stand-alone brand in the adult-use market, joining Symbl, Emblem’s recently launched recreational brand.

In light of the Natura acquisition, Emblem has made the decision to suspend greenhouse construction plans at their Paris Road location. The construction of Emblem’s GMP certified lab located at their Woodslee location will continue with an anticipated completion date of December 2018.


Kailey HabermanKailey HabermanJuly 26, 2018
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6min2400

(Editors Note: JWC Environmental contributed this content.)

The legalization of recreational and medicinal marijuana has skyrocketed its production.  The multibillion-dollar industry averages 22 million pounds of marijuana annually and is expected to increase in the coming years. With the increase in marijuana production, it is inevitable that restrictions and government regulations will tighten.

Matrix NV is a large contributor to the growth of marijuana production in Southern Nevada and stands ready to be at the forefront of the recreational and medicinal marijuana industry.  With the mass production of recreational and medicinal marijuana, quality operations, leading experts, and tactical moves is not only a necessity, it is a requirement.

Facing New Challenges

Matrix NV,  along with many other marijuana producers, has faced challenges when it comes to marijuana disposal laws. The most recent laws require marijuana plant waste to be rendered unusable by grinding and incorporating it with other ground materials.  This mixture must be at least 50 percent non-marijuana waste by volume. Failure to meet marijuana waste disposal requirements can lead to monetary fines up to $15,000 and/or the cancellation of the business’s marijuana license.

For Matrix NV to achieve the 50 percent ground waste mixture, the company was drying the marijuana waste, cutting strips of cardboard and mixing the cardboard and marijuana waste into a woodchipper. This was the best option for Matrix NV, LLC at the time, but it was not the most efficient. Routine maintenance was performed, on multiple instances, on the woodchipper, which was not meant to shred rope-like material, rocks and sticks. As a result, it was constantly clogging.

Not only was the woodchipper constantly shut down due to clogs, it was producing hazardous dust and fumes. It was more of a mess than a solution. The noise of the woodchipper was extremely loud, and the gasoline used to power the woodchipper was costly.

Gregg Frye, Facilities Manager of Matrix NV began researching alternatives for cannabis destruction, which would allow his facility to function and flow more effectively.  

Frye said, “It’s difficult to get rid of all of this waste with a woodchipper and it was really starting to build up.  We started exploring options to get rid of the harvest waste while staying in compliance with the state-specific regulations. We started to look at machines that were geared more toward industrial waste and nothing seemed to be the right fit.”

Upgrading the Woodchipper

That is when Frye found JWC Environmental, a company that manufactures grinders specifically for marijuana waste destruction.  The part that excited Frye the most was this grinder could function in wet or dry applications, meaning Matrix NV, LLC wouldn’t need to dry the waste before grinding.  The shredders would grind compostables and non-compostables without interrupts including entire plants, root balls, soil, plastic pots and other debris. The grinder would save labor and energy costs and would grind down marijuana waste and non-marijuana waste.

The 3-SHRED-H-1200 was a better alternative to wood chippers due to the grinders operations. The new grinder was quiet due to its powerful electric motors, could be used inside or outside as it transmits zero exhaust fumes, and it shreds the toughest dry or wet waste more efficiently. The shredders are more powerful than a wood chipper, which makes marijuana waste disposal completely hassle-free.

75% Labor Savings for Waste Disposal

The grinder worked with Matrix NV’s budget and reduced the one- to two-day process to a three- to four-hour process, a 75% labor reduction for waste disposal.  The grinder now shreds the wet or dry waste and operates without interruptions.

No matter what you mix the marijuana with, to make it unusable – soil, plastic pots, netting, food waste – JWC Environmental’s 3-SHRED can handle it.

Frye says, “We previously couldn’t process the waste like we can now – it is efficient, clean and hassle-free.”

 


StaffStaffJuly 20, 2018
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6min3060

Part 3 of 8 for 2018 Cannabis Trends: Increased demand domestically and internationally promote advancements in agricultural technology.

Agricultural technology in the cannabis industry is undergoing some big big changes and, in 2018, expect those changes to continue to accelerate towards automated, wireless, and efficient. The biggest catalyst for change is the Canadian cannabis market. Cannabis companies across the nation are signing supply agreements with Canadian provinces, and in order to meet those demands they are building massive production facilities.

For example, several months ago the cannabis giant Canopy Growth Corp. recently signed a supply agreement with Prince Edward Island to supply the province with 1 million grams of cannabis annually. Canopy has also signed similar agreements with other Canadian provinces.

To keep up with this demand, Canopy is currently in the process of constructing two massive production facilities; one that will total 1.3 million square feet of growing space and the other totaling to about 1.7 million square feet. Once you figure in Canopy’s other production facilities, the company is expected to have over 5 million square feet of growing space; which is astonishing.

In order to manage all of the space, cannabis companies are looking for ways to improve efficiency and automation. Take Gavita for example. Gavita is a lighting and hydroponics company that recently became popular with cannabis growers ever since it was purchased by Scotts Miracle-Gro. Gavita’s most popular product used to be the 1000W DE HPS system but, as grower’s search for better efficiency, the 750W fixture has started to outsell it.

Expect the cannabis industry in 2018 to start moving away from traditional HPS lighting solutions in favor of both LED and Ceramic Metal Halide (CMH) Lighting.

LED lights have been on the market for years now, but it’s only been recently that the price of LEDs have become competitive. The big advantage of LEDs comes from the fact that they require less energy, emit less heat, and can manipulate the light spectrum to maximize growth. Some also claim that LEDs can help deter pests and bacteria growth, but there’s been little scientific research to confirm these claims.

The breakout star of AgTech this year, however, is going to be CMH lighting. Because of their unique properties, CMH lights are more efficient than HPS lights (350W per lamp vs. 1000W), are cheaper than LEDs, and have on average a Color Rendering Index (CRI) score of 90 out of 100. HPS lights only have a CRI score of between 20-30 and metal halide lights have a CRI range of 60-65.

In terms of automation, cannabis cultivators are looking to reduce as many simple tasks in the cultivation process as possible. Using platforms like Grownetics, cannabis cultivators can track their grows, automate lighting, and utilize big data to understand what works and what doesn’t.

Other companies are taking automation to a whole new level. For example, a startup in Boston called Bloom Automation is currently developing a robot that is capable of trimming cannabis plants. Although the robot is too expensive right now to employ on a massive scale, expect Bloom and other cannabis companies to start seeking similar solutions in both the short and long term.

For the short and long term, expect the world of cannabis agtech to bend towards automation and cheaper, less energy-intensive, lighting solutions. One company already moving in this direction is VividGro. Recently the company launched its first lightweight sustainable light fixture, GroBar, as well as announced the acquisition of home cannabis grow-app WeGrow; which the company hopes to use its technology to help provide more streamlined solutions to cannabis cultivators.

You can download the 2018 Cannabis Trend Report for free by clicking here.


StaffStaffJune 11, 2018
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3min3010

Aurora Cannabis Inc. (ACBFF)  announced that it signed a cannabis flower and trim supply agreement with Agrima Botanicals Corp. a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ascent Industries Corp. Agrima is a licensed producer of medical cannabis pursuant to Health Canada’s Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (“ACMPR”).

According to a company statement, Agrima will supply Aurora with up to 20,000 kg of dried cannabis flower and up to 6,000 kg of cannabis trim per year from its Canadian cultivation facilities. The deal can last up to five years and is subject to a 12,000 kg per year minimum. Currently, Cannabis Benchmarks lists the spot price of wholesale cannabis at $1,237 per pound. At 2.2 pounds per kilogram, this gives the deal an approximate potential value of $54 million.

“The agreement with Ascent brings further differentiation to Aurora’s growing portfolio of products,” said Terry Booth, CEO. “Expanding product choice to our various audiences through quality operators such as Agrima positions us well to accelerate growth. Furthermore, the relationship provides an opportunity to potentially source additional, higher-margin derivative products down the line.”

Philip Campbell, CEO, and Director of Ascent added, “We are delighted to be selected as a supplier to Aurora, a leader in the global cannabis sector. Agrima is committed to providing high-quality cannabis to both consumers and strategic partners, which this new agreement is a testament to. We believe this represents the beginning of a strong strategic relationship with Aurora, one which will benefit both companies for years to come.”

Agrima’s dried cannabis flower and trim will come from its facilities in Pitt Meadows, British Columbia. Once operational, the 600,000 square foot, automated cultivation facility will have a total cultivation capacity of approximately 60,000 kg of cut flower per year. Agrima anticipates receiving Health Canada approval towards the end of calendar 2018 and anticipates shipping its first products in Q1 2019. Agrima’s parent company Ascent offers a product suite of more than 40 unique products under eight consumer-focused brands, including gel capsules, oils, vaporizer pens, pre-rolled joints, various edibles and raw flower.


William SumnerWilliam SumnerJune 6, 2018
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5min4042

Will the nationwide legalization of cannabis in the United States lead to falling cannabis prices? According to a recent report published by the financial services company Stifel Financial Corp., the answer is yes. Published on May 30, 2018, the report details various market pressures and predictions regarding how the legal cannabis market will over the next several years.

According to the report, there is a strong possibility for price compression in the cannabis market, particularly dried cannabis, for several reasons. The first reason is that the highly attractive economics of cannabis will lead to an influx of actors hoping to cash in on the industry, which will lead to oversupply; citing Canada as an example.

Set to legalize adult sales of cannabis this summer, Canada is set to face an oversupply in the coming years. Another report, issued by BMO Capital Markets, found that although the Canadian cannabis market only needs about 11 million square feet of grow space to support demand, the top three growers are already on their way to having approximately 8 million square feet themselves.

When you figure in all of the other cannabis cultivators in Canada, it is easy to see how the market could become saturated. Likewise, permissive licensing structures in the United States has led to an abundance of cannabis cultivators. The most significant barrier to entry as a cultivator is capital; and with deep-pocketed investors flooding the market, capital is readily available to those that seek it.

Additionally, lower prices will emerge as a necessity to encourage users to abandon the black market in favor of the legal cannabis market. Daily cannabis users, which are predicted to account for the majority of national cannabis sales, are sensitive to price. According to an analysis by the Canadian Parliamentary Budget Office, only 61% of daily users would be willing to pay a 20% premium for legal cannabis products compared to the illicit market.

For cannabis operators, this means having to make a choice between maximizing profitability or volume. Profit maximization would most likely occur through the creation of value-added cannabis products; such as extracts and edibles. Using Colorado, Washington, and Oregon as a model; the Stifel report predicts that the national market would initially favor volume over profitability.

Once again drawing from Colorado, the report predicts that a national cannabis industry would most likely see cannabis sell for a wholesale price of $2.00 per gram and a retail price for $3.50 per gram for medicinal and $5.50 for recreational. Dried cannabis would be hit the hardest, while value-added cannabis products would retain a slightly higher price. Currently, the Cannabis Wholesale Benchmarks has cannabis priced at $1,247 per pound for the spot index in June. Cannabis calculates 448 grams per pound putting the current price at $2.78 and so its forecasted drop would be roughly 28% from today’s prices.

In the BMO report the wholesale price of cannabis, at least in Canada, is predicted to be much higher. Wholesale prices for dried cannabis are predicted to hover around C$4.00, while oil/gel capsules would go for C$6.00 per gram, and value-added formats would sell for approximately C$15.00 per gram.

With regards to cannabis taxation, the Stifel report favors the Canadian tax model, which includes a 10% ad valorem tax with a C$1.00 minimum and the ability for provinces and localities to impose their own taxes. Using a similar 10% ad valorem tax, along with a 10% tax imposed by the states, and a 5% local tax; it is estimated that the United States could generate up to approximately $12 billion in cannabis taxes annually.


StaffStaffApril 9, 2018
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3min8330

Cannabis Wheaton Income Corp. (CWBTF) acquired Canadian private cannabis company Robinson’s Cannabis Incorporated in an all-stock deal. Cannabis Wheaton will acquire all of Robinson’s issued and outstanding shares.

Robinson’s is currently building a 27,700 square foot purpose-built facility for cannabis cultivation in Kentville, Nova Scotia. Robinson’s doesn’t have a license at this time but has completed the review process on paper and is confirming its readiness stage.

According to the company statement, Robinson shareholders will receive 5,369,126 common shares upon closing of the acquisition, 2,013,421 common shares issued and held in escrow to be released to Robinson’s shareholders upon Robinson’s receiving a cultivation license under the ACMPR and 2,013,421 common shares issued and held in escrow to be released to the Robinson’s shareholders when the company receives a sales authorization under the ACMPR.

Cannabis Wheaton seems to be focused on expanding its cultivation portfolio. The company also recently said it had entered into a joint venture with Peter Quiring, one of the largest greenhouse builders and operators in Canada, to build a brand new cannabis greenhouse facility in Leamington, Ontario. The joint venture will operate through a newly formed subsidiary dubbed GreenhouseCo. Quiring will act as Chief Executive Officer of GreenhouseCo.

Cannabis Wheaton Acquisitions

Cannabis Wheaton recently acquired DoseCann in an all-stock deal as well. Dosecann is a late-stage “Licensed Dealer” applicant pursuant to the Narcotic Control Regulations with a purpose-built 42,000 square foot facility located in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.

Last week, the company announced it had acquired all of the outstanding securities of Dosecann by way of a “three-cornered amalgamation.” Cannabis Wheaton will pay the holders of the Dosecann Securities an aggregate of up to $38,000,000, payable in common shares of Cannabis Wheaton subject to the satisfaction of certain post-closing time and performance-based milestones. As part of the acquisition, all outstanding convertible securities of Dosecann will either be converted into Dosecann common shares and exchanged for consideration shares on the closing of the acquisition.

Stock Performance

Cannabis Wheaton stock was lately trading at $1.22 on the OTC Markets, down from its 52-week high of $2.70. The Toronto Exchange stock was last trading at C$1.55, a drop for its 52-week of C$2.97.


Davide FortinDavide FortinApril 6, 2018
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3min29210

The “hemp flower-rush” has reached Italian soil, and is not driven by patient demand. Of course, strains of Canadian cannabis are exported to Italy through Germany, but this is secondary news. A more prevalent phenomenon is happening within the hemp market, and it is not merely driven by those who want to get high. A reform implemented last year has boosted Italy’s fledgling hemp industry, with an expected 80% increase in acres of cultivated land.

The new legislation has resulted in a de facto removal of substantial red tape from hemp production. Any farmer can now grow legal cannabis with a level of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) superior to most European countries (except Switzerland).

Although most Italian hemp is grown to produce seeds or fiber these outputs are not the engine of market growth. The trigger of change is the de facto liberalization of the market for hemp flowers. In 2017, the supply could not keep up with the demand, making it the most profitable crop sold within the Italian market. Often called “cannabis light”, consumer interest is driven by its large percentage of Cannabidiol (CBD), which induces a more sober feeling of relaxation.

The pioneers in this industry are EasyJoint, a company responsible for both opening the market and acting as a major supporter of the entire supply chain. They supply farmers with seeds and cuttings to re-buy the flowers, which are then packed and sold to the final customer. This business model appears to be functioning extremely well, and its founder, Luca Marola has declared revenues of over two million dollars within the first nine months of activity. Besides enriching shareholders, this has significant repercussions on the primary sector, providing jobs for over 700 Italian farmers.

The future looks bright for cannabis light, with large exports of flowers and derivatives expected to other EU countries in the coming months. This phenomenon comes in a very hot period for Italian politics, just after the election where comedian Beppe Grillo’s pro-legalization party won the largest share of Italian votes. It may be difficult to predict the future, but soon hemp may not be the only type of cannabis exported out of Italy.


StaffStaffApril 2, 2018
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4min5040

Emerald Health Therapeutics, Inc. (EMHTF) reported its annual 2017 earnings and fourth quarter results. Revenue for the full year increased 270% from C$253,321 in 2016 to C$937,654 in 2017. Net losses for the year also increased from (C$2.9 million) in 2016 to (C$8.7 million) in 2017. The net loss per share went from five cents in 2016 to a net loss per share of ten cents in 2017.

“Following the Canadian federal government’s introduction in April 2017 of legislation to broadly legalize adult-use cannabis, Emerald put in motion multiple strategic steps focused on placing the company in the top tier of Canadian licensed producers and pursuing international opportunities,” said Chris Wagner, CEO of Emerald Health Therapeutics. “The company made important leadership hires; took steps to assure significant, secure supply of cannabis via large-capacity production facilities; struck multiple strategic collaborations and investments; leveraged its extensive life science industry expertise to initiate product innovation and intellectual property formation; and added substantially to its treasury.”

Revenue for the fourth quarter of 2017 was C$279,362 versus C$124,251 in 2016 for the same time period. The net loss for the fourth quarter was (C$4 million) versus a net loss of (C$880,424) for the same time period in 2016.

The company is in the throes of a building phase. According to a statement, Emerald said that conversion of the first 250,000 ft2 section of the Delta 3 greenhouse to cannabis production was substantially complete, with the conversion of the remainder of the 1.1 million ft2 greenhouses ongoing and on schedule. The company also said that senior growing, financial, human resources and operational personnel, including the established team transferred from Village Farms, were in place for production ramp-up.

In addition to the Delta 3 greenhouse conversion project, Emerald has completed a significant amount of construction at its Metro Vancouver site and in October 2017 applied to Health Canada to produce cannabis at this facility.

Emerald has also signed deals with DMG Blockchain to form a joint venture, to be named CannaChain Technologies, to develop a blockchain-based supply chain management system and e-commerce marketplace for the legal cannabis industry. Plus, it signed a Letter Of Intent with Namaste Technologies to collaborate on strategic business opportunities worldwide and develop a fully integrated e-commerce platform to serve as a retail channel for the Company’s patient

Wagner added, “We look forward to a transformational year in 2018 with the expected initiation of broad legalized adult-use and our vaulting into the top tier of production capacity, enhanced branding, sophisticated sales and marketing, and progression of our medical product development and patenting plans. We are executing well on the projects we have announced and are assessing an array of potentially impactful new business opportunities.”


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtMarch 19, 2018
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8min5790

Applied DNA Sciences (APDN) wants to use DNA tagging to track and verify cannabis strains. It wants to do for the cannabis industry what it did for the cotton industry – assure consumers that they are getting what they pay for. This Stony Brook, NY company has the ability to use DNA tagging to keep supply chains from being corrupted and make sure products are honest.

The Pima cotton story is the best way to explain this technology and why the company wants to apply the same process to the cannabis industry. Applied DNA Sciences began testing cotton products and realized consumers were spending extra money to purchase what they thought were premium cotton products called Pima. The makers of these Pima cotton sheets, towels and apparel believed that they were selling Pima products until it was proven that they weren’t. But whether it was the farmer or the factories in China that began blending non-Pima fibers into the finished product, the end result was that customers weren’t getting the Pima cotton they were paying for.

Applied DNA Sciences now tags most cotton following the harvest and then tests fibers, yarns, fabrics and even the finished product. Manufactures and consumers can now trust that whatever Pima cotton product they are buying, it is, in fact, a Pima cotton product.

That strain pride exists in the cannabis industry as well. Cannabis cultivators create and develop specific branded strains. Likewise, customers are very fond of popular strains like Blue Dream, Girl Scott Cookies or GG#4. The question is whether the cultivators are actually growing what they think they are growing and are the customers really getting the strain they think they are buying?

Canadian researchers from the University of British Columbia along with Sean Myles, a population geneticist at Dalhousie University conducted a strain study. They found only a moderate correlation between the marijuana reported by cultivators and the ancestry claimed. For example, a sample of Jamaican Lambs Bread, which is classified as cannabis sativa, was almost identical at a genetic level to a cannabis indica strain from Afghanistan. “Cannabis breeders and growers often indicate the percentage of Sativa or Indica in a cannabis strain, but they are not very accurate,” Page explained.

This could be avoided says Applied DNA Sciences. The company can apply a molecular tag to the plant which is unique to each cultivator. This is becoming increasingly important as farms invest thousands into their brands and they want to try to protect their strains as master growers move amongst different companies. This tag can be detected in plant material before and after drying. Their product is called CertainT.

“We knew we could spray the plant. We had done it with cotton, but we didn’t know what would happen after the processing of the plant,” said Gordon Hope, Director of Security Solutions. The company is now testing edible products to make sure the DNA tag can withstand the heating process during cooking.

A DNA tagging process could do that.With the CertainT tag, a manufacturer can be assured that the plant it buys from a cultivator is in fact what they believe they are buying. A customer can be certain that the strain they are purchasing is, in fact, that strain. The process can also be used to assist in regulatory compliance so that authorities can determine the origin of the product. Right now, the product on a shelf in a New York dispensary can be tracked by a seed-to-sale program but there is no way for the state to verify that the product was in fact grown in New York. A DNA tagging process could do that.

The tag can’t be compromised or copied. Even the U.S. Department of Defense relies on these tags to ensure the integrity of critical components such as lubricating oil or specific engine parts.

“They’ve got millions invested. They’re trying to protect their intellectual property, their trade secrets, their knowledge and their know-how,” said Hope. “Remember, most people can’t see the grow operations.” Hope also said that the medical marijuana companies he spoke to told him that their biggest problem is consistency. “Medical marijuana producers are very much concerned with consistency for their patients,” he said. “Large pharmaceutical companies don’t have this issue, but its critical for patients taking medical marijuana to know they are getting the exact same medicine for every dose.”

The company said it is sensitive to not adding a burden to the system. John Shearman Director of Marketing said, “We can be a nice overlay to provide that comfortable feeling and brand recognition.” They want to make it easy to run a test to verify a product’s origin. “A processor could be mixing in products that a brand isn’t able to verify and check,” he said.

In addition to helping processors and manufacturers, DNA Tagging can also help with regulatory authorities. The state should be able to check the product to make sure it is what it says it is. “If you want transparency in your system, you have no real way to assure that,” said Hope. “Everywhere along the supply chain, there is a chance for diversion. It could take 20 minutes to do the test. Even a dispensary could do the test on the product.”

Applied DNA Sciences currently has over 60 employees with 53 issued patents and 75 patent applications pending. The company has been testing its CertainT on cannabis in the state of Michigan where medical marijuana has been legal since 2008.

“The good news is you need very little DNA,” said Hope. “It’s a critical element missing from seed to sale chain.”



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