The Financial Post reports in its Tuesday, Feb. 5, edition that the unlikely combination of freshwater fish and cannabis is producing outsized medical marijuana crops that Green Relief aims to capitalize on, as it plots a stock market listing.
A Reuters dispatch to the Post reports that in an underground Southern Ontario facility surrounded by farmland, Green Relief operates a cutting-edge aquaponic farm, using filtered fish waste to fertilize cannabis plants, which in turn clean the water for the fish.
The firm says it is the world's only licensed producer to grow medical marijuana this way, a pesticide-free process. The only sign of this operation is above-ground ventilation equipment sticking out of the ground.
"This is the agriculture of the future," said Warren Bravo, a former concrete contractor who co-founded the firm with friend Steve LeBlanc in 2013. "If you're not latching on to sustainable agriculture technologies now, you're going to be a dinosaur." Green Relief's closed-loop system, which raises 6,000 tilapia and 4,500 plants at any given time, uses 90-per-cent less water than conventional agriculture, while delivering 10 to 20 per cent better yields than traditional methods.
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