‘World’s largest’ CBD plant setting up shop in Manitoba

Botanist Growers unveils purchase of Pineland Forest Nursery. Jordan Pearn/ Global News

Botanist Organic Growers Corp. is planning to open what they call the world’s largest indoor organic hemp CBD plant.

The company purchased Pineland Forest Nursery from the Province of Manitoba and said Friday they will be hiring up to 200 people over the next three years.

The nursery operation east of Winnipeg was shut down by the province in 2018. The Hadashville facility had employed eight people full-time plus more than a dozen part-time and seasonal workers, according to the Manitoba Government Employees Union. Botanist officials said they were exploring ways to keep as many of the former nursery employees as possible.

READ MORE: Cannabis legalization brings changes to hemp industry

The company will be growing hemp, with plans to develop a processing plant to turn the crop into cannabidiol, or CBD oil.

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CBD is a non-intoxicating product of the hemp plant.

“We’re excited to be investing in Manitoba,” said Jeremy Towning, CEO and co-founder of Botanist Organic Growers.

“The global CBD industry is still new but is expected to grow exponentially around the world in the next few years.

“Our goal is to make Manitoba at the centre of that international expansion,” Towning said.

READ MORE: ‘It won’t even get a fly high’: Sask. farmer on people comparing hemp to marijuana

“Some analysts have estimated that the CBD market could grow to more than 20 billion us by 2022,” Botanist Co-Founder Duncan Gordon said.

“Over the next few years, we will be investing tens of millions of dollars into production facilities, and research and development.

“We also plan to create and education centre to raise awareness to the role hemp CBD with no THC can play in providing natural treatments for physical and mental well-being.”

The company’s first crop will be produced using indoor greenhouse facilities. Eventually they plan to expand production to the surrounding fields and anticipate working with area farmers for additional production in the future.

New home of Botanist Organic Growers. Josh Arason / Global News
Greenhouses at the former Pineland Forest Nursery will be used to grow hemp instead.

While hemp is in fact part of the Cannabis Sativa plant species, it is not the same as marijuana, and you won’t get high if you use its CBD.

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“CBD is much different — it’s not psychoactive its used for medical purposes typically for anti-inflammatory or pain relief applications … for MS or epilepsy or things like that,” Delta 9 CEO, John Arbuthnot said.

READ MORE: Medical Marijuana – The Difference between CBD and THC

CBD is also used to treat anxiety, inflammation and chronic pain in the rapidly growing wellness market.

While some experts say there is little scientific evidence of CBD’s benefits, that is not stopping people who are looking for a remedy without the high.

“We are seeing a lot of people gravitating towards the CBD extract products. They don’t want to get high, they just want to treat some sort of symptom,” Arbuthnot said.

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