News, Press and Media
What's new at Island Harvest
Island Harvest is awaiting Health Canada's
final commercial pre-licensing inspection.
Interested in strategic alliances, partnerships,
ideas? Contact us.
Did you know... Island Harvest has been supported by
all four levels of government.
Island Harvest is proudly supported locally by
municipal, regional, provincial and federal levels of
Island Harvest joins the Canadian Medical Cannabis
Click here for the CMCIA press release to find out
Island Harvest's facility (photos below) with all physical security
is now complete and we are awaiting Health Canada pre-licence
After receiving Level 5 ready-to-build approval status from
Health Canada, Island Harvest is
pleased to announce our quality assurance, record keeping
and personnel security clearances have been
approved and the company is in the final stage of licensing. Our
licensed producer status
subject to physical security inspection and final approval.
Please check back for updates...
Cowichan Valley firm plants seed for
medical marijuana revolution
Times Colonist, Victoria, B.C.
By Carla Wilson, Business Editor
October 2, 2013
Health Canada anticipates that medical marijuana
could become a $1.3-billion industry in this country
within 10 years.
The owner of a medical marijuana facility in the
Cowichan Valley says consumers will get a better
product, more choice, and that his own production will
increase a hundredfold under the coming free-market
“The new system is very positive, certainly from an
industry and commercial perspective. I think it is going
to benefit the consumer in the long run in terms of a
good standardized quality product in compliance with the
Food and Drug Act,” Eric Nash, co-owner with Wendy
Little, of Island Harvest, said Wednesday. “We are
planning for rapid expansion.”
Citizens are becoming more accepting of medical
marijuana as a viable medicine, Nash said. Health Canada
anticipates that it could become a $1.3-billion industry
in 10 years.
Like the other 4,000-plus licensed growers in Canada,
Island Harvest has been permitted to produce for up to
two patients each.
Under the new rules coming into effect next April,
there will be no limit on the number of patients, Nash
The company applied in the summer for a licence under
the new regime and hopes it will be approved within
Nash said the firm is moving into a larger facility
and spending $250,000 to $300,000 in capital costs, the
expected minimum for a commercial operation.
He can’t say any more than that because the federal
government requires that details of a growing facility
remain confidential, he said.
Licensed producers must have standard operating
procedures for quality assurance and control,
inspections, accountability, record keeping and high
security, he said.
This represents a drastic change. Currently, “you’ve
got product grown in basements, in closets, and
outbuildings and it is being distributed to patients,”
Nash said. “It has been a bit of a haphazard industry in
Canada now has 37,400 medical-marijuana users. Health
Canada predicts that could increase to 450,000 by 2024.
“I think there is tremendous opportunity in this
industry for businesses and for investors, for
venture-capital folks to get involved. I think it is
going to be an industry in transition,” Nash said.
“There will be a bit of moving and shaking of
companies jockeying around for position, some mergers
and acquisitions, maybe alliances and partnerships
formed to pool resources because certain people have
skills in different areas.”
Specialty companies producing niche strains of
cannabis will be developed, Nash said.
Some consumers prefer certain strains for pain relief
from given medical conditions. Island Harvest will
feature organic marijuana as one offering, he said.
Consumers will get freedom of choice in price and
quality, Nash said. “It’s going to be a very diverse
Health Canada anticipates that dried medical
marijuana will sell next year for about an average of
$7.60 per gram.
Potential exists for spin-off product development as
well, said Nash. Not all patients want to smoke
cannabis. Some prefer tinctures or a baked or cooked
Nash said that once a new licence is granted,
production, with a three-to-four month crop cycle, will
start right away.
As for how much business will grow, Nash said, “It
will be a huge multiple, a hundredfold anyway.”
He expects to have between six and 12 employees next
As of April, Health Canada will no longer sell and
distribute medical marijuana, and personal production by
individuals at their own homes is supposed to come to an
end. The only allowed source of medical marijuana will
be licensed producers.
Philippe Lucas, a UVic PhD candidate in the Social
Dimensions of Health program and a graduate researcher
at the university’s Centre for Addictions Research, said
the new system is a “step forward.”
It will end a single-producer monopoly that has
dominated the program for 10 years by licensing more
large-scale medical cannabis producers, he said. And
customers will see a better selection of a
Physicians will be able to fill out a one-page form
that can be mailed or faxed to a production facility,
which would then send the product by courier. Today, a
33-page form is required.
Lucas would like to see storefronts allowed to sell
medical marijuana, permitting face-to-face contact. “It
seems like a missed opportunity.”