TheraCann Abandons Plans for $20 Million Michigan Grow

Dec 19, 2017

Canadian growing conglomerate TheraCann’s proposed $20 million Michigan cultivation facility is growing, growing, gone. The company has pulled its plans for the massive grow after Michigan’s still-evolving cannabis regulations turned a direction the company felt would have put the facility at a competitive disadvantage.

The Grand Rapids Press reports that plans for TheraCann’s $20 million marijuana facility in Kingsley, Michigan have been abandoned. The decision comes after the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) issued notice of rules that made it far easier for competitors to set up similar-size shops where TheraCann had worked hard to legalize their permit for a large-scale operation.

Michigan is a medical-use state, but a 2018 Michigan recreational marijuana measure may qualify for the ballot.

“Nearly three months ago - on September 28, 2017 - LARA issued an advisory bulletin which clarified our intention to allow a potential licensee to be granted multiple ("stacked") class C grow licenses in a single location,” LARA said in a statement. “This was not a change in policy but rather a clarification of current state law.”

Or in plain English, LARA announced a “clarification” that said small permit holders (1,500 plants or fewer) could combine their licenses and operate under the same roof. This eliminated the competitive advantage TheraCann had anticipated when they spent years selling their multimillion-dollar plans to local officials and communities.  

“For our own standards, a wholly-owned facility where we can maintain quality is ideal," TheraCann president Richard Goodman told the Press.

Local officials who’d helped shepherd the deal seemed less than pleased.

"I was told that there were other communities that were more attractive to them and that they are pursuing them," Kingsley village manager Dan Hawkins said. "It's stunning because there was a lot of work and energy put in by our councils and community and TheraCann, for the most part, said they were on their way."

The facility, which was supposed to bring more than 100 jobs to the region, now sits permitted and eligible to host collectives of smaller growers.

Hawkins told the Press, “One door closes, another opens."

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