Medcan Australia has formally opened its new indoor growing facility – and the sky’s the limit.
Medcan Australia officially took the wraps off its state-of-the-art propagation, cultivation and processing facility in Heathwood in the south west of Queensland’s capital city Brisbane early this week – a $12 million vertical farm that has been several years in the making.
The new facility will enable the firm to control every aspect of input including humidity, temperature, VPD, CO2, fertigation* mix and light intensity. This allows for consistent harvest cycles and year-round production regardless of the season. The Brisbane facility will see Medcan doubling production capacity, which was previously noted as being up to 6,000 kilograms of dried finished product annually – whether that includes this new capacity isn’t clear.
The facility’s custom designed and engineered drying rooms utilise horizontal linear airflow to ensure no microclimates develop that could promote the growth of biological contaminants – technology Medcan Australia says sets its facility apart from others.
“Medicinal cannabis plants are extremely susceptible to mould and powdery mildew caused by high levels of humidity and fluctuations in temperature/humidity,” states the firm. “Our plants are not affected by many of these external environmental impacts that a broadacre or greenhouse crop would experience.”
Established in 2016, Medcan Australia also participates in the import, export, wholesaling and distribution of medical cannabis, and holds a fistful of state and federal licences to enable it to do so. Another interesting aspect of the company is its Compassionate Access Program – described as an Australian first – which subsidises medications 15, 30 or 50 per cent based on clinical need and financial hardship.
“We don’t want any patients to be unable to access medicinal cannabis on cost grounds. The Compassionate Access Program is our way of offering a helping hand.”
The company also lays claim to being the first Australian medicinal cannabis company to pay a shareholder dividend, which occurred in 2021.
* Fertigation is the technique of supplying dissolved fertiliser to crops via an irrigation system.