Homegrown (and legal)… first cannabis farm to open
BRITAIN’S first legal cannabis farm is set to open in a £10million industrial greenhouse.
Sativa Investments will begin production of cannabis plants after planning permission was approved for the seven-and-a-half acre site in rural Wiltshire.
Up to eight tons of the drug will be produced each year in sheds at the undisclosed location for medicinal compounds and cannabis oil products.
Doctors have been allowed to prescribe cannabis-based medicine from November following a decision by home secretary Sajid Javid.
Sativa’s Geremy Thomas stressed there is a difference between strains of cannabis for medicinal and recreational use.
The CEO said: ‘We have a test facility here which will allow us to grow different strains of cannabis to assess with our laboratory the cannabinoid content from each plant strain. We’re also interested in testing different forms of hydroponic mediums and are looking at different forms of lighting.’
Mr Thomas admitted the company faced security issues when its test fields run by PhytoVista Laboratories in Frome, Somerset, were discovered last year.
‘We were trialling ten acres of industrial hemp licensed by the Home Office,’ he told BBC Radio 4’s Farming Today programme on Thursday.
‘Three of the local hoodlums from Frome spotted the fields from afar and published it on Facebook, which prompted us to plough the crop into the ground very quickly.’
The programme’s producer Heather Simons suggested the culprits were in a haze about the purpose of the plants.