August 20, 2019
Cannabis farmers asked not to cut down fruit trees

Persons intending to plant medicinal cannabis are being asked not to cut down fruit trees that are present on lands that will be used for marijuana cultivation.

A Wednesday August 14 release from the Medicinal Cannabis Authority (MCA) said persons who have already obtained approval from the MCA, or have applied and are awaiting approval to cultivate medicinal cannabis are asked to note that fruit trees present on any land must remain.

“Beginning August 12th, 2019, any cutting of fruit trees on land intended for cultivation of medicinal cannabis, will be considered contrary to the developmental agenda of the MCA,” a the release from Theresa Daniel, Communications Consultant at the MCA said.

This past July, Cabinet approved 34 cannabis licences, said to be able to generate close to $12 million in revenue. It is projected that another 200 traditional cultivators will obtain licenses by September 1 this year.

The recommendations for the licences were made by the MCA in keeping with the regulations of the Cannabis Industry Act (2018).

A release from the Medicinal Cannabis Authority dated July 11, 2019 one day after Cabinet approved the licences, said that among those approved for licenses are: eight local farmers’ producers cooperatives with an aggregated membership of over 100 cultivators; 13 traditional cultivators of cannabis who applied individually; three non-traditional local farmers; and 10 companies with directorship of nationals from the OECS, CARICOM, North America, Europe and Africa.

There are five classes – A, B, C, D and E – of cannabis licences.

And the release, in reference to the 10 companies, said: “Of these companies, there are three Class E licences (valuing EC$2.67 million each), two Class D (valuing EC$1 million each), three Class C (valuing EC$500,000 each), one Class B (valuing EC$250,000 each) and one with Class A (valuing EC$100,000)”.

The eight local farmer cooperatives that have been granted licenses are: the Nyahbingy Order of Rastafari, Rastafari Farms, Cannabis Revival Committee (CRC), SVG Rastafari Agri, Grieggs Rastafari Progressive Society, Fancy Cooperative, Herbs R Us and the South Rivers Producers’ Cooperative.

Approval of these licences allows applicants to cultivate in a number of areas including Peter’s Hope, Rose Hall, Belle Isle, Richmond, Fitz Hughes, Mt Wynne, Mt Bentick, Orange Hill, Langley Park, Gracefield (South Rivers), Byera, Greiggs, Champans, Hadley’s Village and Mt Grenan.