In October 2018, MediPharm Labs became the first publicly traded company to be headquartered in Barrie, Ontario and currently employs more than 180 scientists, researchers, engineers, technicians and professionals who produce pure, trusted and precisely-dosed cannabis products for patients and consumers. With more than $20 million having been spent on the build-out of wholly owned facilities and laboratories – for the most part utilizing local suppliers and contractors – the Company has made a sizable impact on the local economy.
MediPharm Labs was an early entrant, applying for their cannabis processing licence under the Access to Cannabis for Medical Patients Regulations (ACMPR), back in 2016 and receiving Licence #95 on March 29, 2018. The Company has become a permanent fixture in the cannabis value chain, providing much-needed expertise and access to extraction, especially for cultivators who do not have in-house capability. The Company purchases a significant amount of Canadian-grown cannabis for their white and private label platforms where they make extract from dried cannabis then formulate, process, package and distribute advanced derivative products such as bottled cannabis oil. On October 17th of 2019 when Health Canada allows a broader range of cannabis products, including edibles, beverages, vapeables, topicals and concentrates, MediPharm Labs will be ready to supply the active cannabis ingredients needed for these new concentrate-based product types as well as be a significant producer of vape cartridges.
While the Canadian cannabis industry was dominated by vertically integrated cultivators, Pat McCutcheon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer and Keith Strachan, Director and President identified the segment opportunity for high margin and high growth and created a very special niche. They set a precedent with Health Canada’s application process, being the first to ever apply for a cannabis oil production license without first being a cultivator; Health Canada twice returned their application because the “cultivation box wasn’t ticked”. They persevered and secured support for their licence application from the City of Barrie as well.
The second wave of cannabis legalization begins today and MediPharm Labs in Barrie is ready to supply the active ingredients used in edibles, beverages, extracts and topicals.
Posted by Barrie 360 on Thursday, October 17, 2019
The onslaught of companies applying for cannabis licences, and going public, leading up to the Legalization Day in Canada, (October 17, 2018), made getting facetime with various regulatory bodies challenging, but this did not deter Pat or Keith. While waiting for the final stages of licensing, they were able to staff the facility, develop internal protocols, modify equipment, form partnerships, amass dried cannabis inventory, and produce extracted resin, in order to be ready when their sales license was received. They strived to maintain their independence, accepting no equity ownership from other licensed producers, assuring their ability to work with everyone in the industry as a trusted, autonomous supplier.
Canada is on the forefront of the global cannabis industry having legalized both medical and recreational use, but MediPharm Labs also has its sights on other jurisdictions worldwide that have approved medical cannabis use; MediPharm Labs is actively seeking import/export opportunities while also building their Australian subsidiary. To keep pace with change in the Industry, MediPharm Labs has created a culture of innovation. Founders, Pat and Keith have invested in a superb team of professionals, many from the bio-pharmaceutical Industry. They have also aligned with outside consultants and suppliers to optimize operations, equipment and methodologies. Most recently, the company established a Science Advisory Committee with internationally esteemed scientists, researchers and medical professionals, who will advise and assist in harnessing the potential of cannabis through innovation, best practices, thought leadership and strategic alliances. They bear the hallmarks of success: advantage in expertise, beyond the competition, producing quality extracts at scale.
LOCAL CORPORATE CITIZENS
They committed $30,000 to the financial support of the “MediPharm Innovation Space” at the SandBox Centre,
As speakers, volunteers and members, MediPharm Labs’ management has taken leadership roles in community groups such as Barrie Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club of Barrie, Xcelerate Summit, The United Way and Georgian College.
CREATING VALUE FOR STAKEHOLDERS
From the outset, Pat and Keith have been steadfast in their commitment to forming an organization known for its integrity by making workplace safety their priority, respecting and being compliant with all regulations, and leading in good business practices in every aspect of their operations. Their pledge to employees was to create a positive workplace, connected through open communication and shared goals, where staff members are provided with the resources to succeed, and their efforts are respected and rewarded. Many MediPharm Labs employees are also shareholders, this provides each owner-employee the opportunity to contribute to and participate in the success of the enterprise.
As they strive to be the trusted Global Leader in industrial-scale manufacturing of high-quality, cannabinoid-based derivatives, MediPharm Labs will do their hometown proud as a leader in this exciting new industry.
Header photo courtesy of MediPharm Labs via Facebook
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