(Image Credit: Bonify via Screengrab)
On Monday April 10th, Bonify became the 42nd licensed producer under the Access to Cannabis for Medicinal Purpose Regulations or ACMPR. We got a chance to catch up with Bonify's CEO Jeff Peitsch to learn more about Bonify and how they are helping Canada's medical marijuana patients.
Bonify means 'to make better', and it was clear through our conversation with Jeff that Bonify strives 'to make better' the process of accessing medical marijuana.
The rigorous ACMPR application process took longer than Bonify expected, but they didn't waste any time waiting for Health Canada. During the three year process Bonify not only expanded their facility to 320,000 square feet, but also took time to conduct focus groups with medical marijuana patients, physicians, community members and others.
One result of their focus groups was the development of their subsidiary, Canadian Wholesale Hydroponics. Bonify started this project after discovering through their focus groups that some individuals didn't have good access to their medical marijuana through the online mail-order system used by the licensed producers and prefered to grow their own. Canadian Wholesale Hydroponics provides quality growing supplies and guidance to these patients. When asked if Bonify would attempt to obtain a starting materials license amendment (for the sale of seeds and plants) from Health Canada, Jeff said it is something they will consider down the road. Right now, Bonify is focused on preparing for cultivation of their first crop.
Beyond the focus groups, Jeff already had a concept of what medical marijuana patients (or potential patients) and physicians were looking for through his experience working as the chief operating officer of CancerCare Manitoba. He shared with us that it was a common occurrence at CancerCare Manitoba that physicians would recommend medical marijuana but patients wouldn't know how to access it, so physicians would then ask if patients had a younger relative who might know how to access 'street' marijuana. Beyond the lack of access, you never really know what's in 'street' marijuana, how it was grown or the cannabinoid content in it, causing many to question whether it’s a health benefit or detriment when obtained that way. These experiences continue to influence Jeff's leadership at Bonify and their goal to provide access to high quality, pharmaceutical grade cannabis for the patients who need it most.
Bonify is proud to be a part of the Winnipeg community, and is thankful for the community's involvement in their development and growth thus far. That said, Bonify hopes to extend their local support toward a goal of international recognition and support.
Bonify currently has 100,000 square feet of production space ready for cultivation. Unlike some of the other licensed producers, Bonify isn't planning on focusing on one cultivation method, but is rather building out the facility to accommodate multiple cultivation methods. Bonify has a "Level 9 Vault" that has already been approved by Health Canada. This means that they can store up to 3,100kg of dried cannabis at any given time. Although they can't currently produce this much, it is indicative of not only the company's ambition but their desire to make everything 'better' through the construction of what in many ways is a “best in class” facility.
For more information on Bonify be sure to check out their website at https://bonify.com/. Also stay tuned for more coverage from The Daily Marijuana Observer of Bonify as they cultivate their first crop and progress towards a sales license.
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