FV Pharma Inc. employees Holly Bonaiuto, team lead, and Trevor Mackenzie, manager of customer care, discussed the impact that the start of online sales of dried indoor-grown hydroponic cannabis have had on the Cobourg facility. – Dominik Wisniewski/Torstar
Cobourg’s FV Pharma Inc. began selling dried cannabis on Aug. 19 and the company says it hopes to receive a licence to sell extracts in the coming months. – FV Pharma Inc. photo
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COBOURG — Clients with a prescription for medicinal cannabis who want locally-grown strains can now order them online or over the phone.
Grown indoors with a hydroponic system, Cobourg’s FV Pharma Inc. (FV Pharma) began selling dried cannabis on Aug. 19 and the company says it hopes to receive a licence to sell extracts in the coming months.
“Everything is approved now so we are able to sell to the public,” said Trevor Mackenzie, the customer care manager for FV Pharma Inc., which is a subsidiary wholly-owned by FSD Pharma Inc. and trades as HUGE on the Canadian Securities Exchange.
“The fact that (the licence) is here and we are now able to sell our top quality product is amazing.”
FV Pharma cuts ribbon at Cobourg marijuana dispensary
In addition to the dried cannabis listed for sale on its website, www.fvpharma.com, the company said it intends to work with World Class Extractions Inc. to produce high-quality cannabis extracts (oil, concentrated resin) that can meet specific customer requirements for THC and CBD (cannabidiol) ratios, as well as other cannabinoid content.
FV Pharma said it also intends to work with Canntab Therapeutics Ltd. to produce cannabis tablets that provide precise dosing and specific concentrations of medical cannabis.
It also lists products on the site that are made by Kitchener-based Arizer, a Canadian company which has been selling dry herb vaporizers since 2005.
“The launch of a functional online ordering portal to fulfil prescriptions for medicinal cannabis is a very important milestone for FSD Pharma,” said Dr. Raza Bokhari, the executive co-chair and CEO of FSD Pharma.
“Since receipt of our Sale for Medical Purposes licence earlier in June, we are now open for registration online to a wider client base and we are pleased that patients have already begun to use our user-friendly website.”
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Mackenzie was joined Holly Bonaiuto, the team lead at FV Pharma, when he discussed the latest developments with Northumberland News while inside the former Kraft plant.
“We did the health fair at a local retirement home and everyone there was excited for us — waiting for us to get up and going,” he said. “Now that we can (sell) we’re getting customers left, right and centre.”
He said that around 27 to 28 people currently work at the plant, with plans to hire more in the coming months.
“Right now we have quite a bit of hybrid and sativa strains, plus a really good CBD strain with very little THC, so that psychoactive relief is not present in this one strain,” said Mackenzie, adding that the company currently has around 100 kilograms of product available for sale. “It’s called Cobo 1970 and I think it’s going to be one of our top-selling strains for the CBD value that it does have.”
For Bonaiuto, who came to FV Pharma from a larger cannabis company, working at the startup stage in Cobourg has been a highlight.
“I love the whole family aspect here,” she said. “If there is a huge harvest everyone is willing to come in and help us.”
They said the focus is now on connecting with area physicians and clinics to work with them on the education side.
“We want to let not only the people in the community, but the doctors and clinics in the area, know that we are here to help,” Mackenzie said.
Asked about direct sales to customers at a brick and mortar location in Cobourg, he said that continues to be the vision for staff.
“My vision down the road is … people can come in to see the site, look at the product, have their questions answered and have consults with us,” he said, pointing out that there is no timeline for that at the moment. “It will be a one-stop-shop.”
While the number of job openings at the facility is partially dependent on final Health Canada licence approvals, Mackenzie said more positions will be opening up in customer care, human resources and production soon.
“Down the road just keep checking back to our careers section which we will have on (the site),” he said. “We get a lot of resumes every day and we do tell everyone that when they send it in we will keep it on file.”
He said the company has been calling some of those people in for interviews.
“With the Kraft plant closing down 10-plus years ago, some people are travelling an hour each to get to a job, so we want to open it up and have people closer to home and with family,” he said. “It’s a great place to be right now.”