Next year, Boundary cannabis enthusiasts will be able to enjoy their weed while simultaneously quenching the thirst and satisfying a dry mouth that is often a result of smoking or ingestion, thanks to a locally produced drink.
BevCanna, a British Columbia company that seeks to “provide world-class cannabis processing and white label manufacturing services for the production of infused beverages” has entered into an agreement with a cannabis grower to grow pot on 130 acres of land near Bridesville. Using the Bridesville bottling facility currently operated by Naturo Aqua, BevCanna plans on creating cannabis-infused drinks that will come with iced tea, fruit or floral flavours, explained Emma Andrews, the company’s chief commercialization officer.
“Our intention is that you wouldn’t taste the cannabis, actually,” said Andrews. BevCanna has partnered with Next Leaf Solutions, a Vancouver-based company with a patent on cannabis processing, that she said can achieve an “odourless, tasteless and colourless” extract to put in the water.
The company obtained its commercial hemp cultivation license over the summer and is now applying for a cannabis processing license that would allow workers to extract the desired chemicals from the locally grown plants on-site and create the bottled drinks. Andrews said that BevCanna is also applying for an outdoor cannabis cultivation license “that will allow us to, to process, manufacture, and even cultivate cannabis on-site.”
Andrews said that, at peak operation, the facility would be growing more cannabis than would be needed for its drink production and would therefore look to sell the grown cannabis to other licensed entities in Canada.
To support the production, temporary seasonal workers will be hired in the fall, when the crop is ready to harvest.
“Much like seasonal fruit crops,” said Andrews, “there will be a seasonal harvesting crew that will come in and there will be a year-round production crew that will work at the bottling plant itself.”
Andrews said that they would look to hire local workers for the year-round positions.
Unlike wineries or breweries, there will be no front-end sales at the Bridesville facility. Current provincial and federal regulations restrict such operations. Additionally, labelling likely won’t feature images of orchards or the fruit flavours used either, as packaging requirements for cannabis products insist that packaging not appeal to minors.