A cannabis plant. (From Kelowna Capital News)

Langley cannabis business hopes for boutique success

Start small and grow is the aim of Glen Valley Cannabis

A made-in-Langley cannabis business is moving ahead with a new site and hopes to enter a maturing market soon.

Glen Valley Cannabis finished construction work on its new site at Gloucester Industrial Estates earlier this summer, and is now waiting for the go-ahead from the government to grow and process medical and recreational product.

Things have been moving smoothly for the small local company, after a slightly bumpy start when neighbours objected to their first proposed location, in rural Glen Valley.

“It was never our intention to upset the neighbourhood,” said Paul deThomas, the chief executive officer.

The other issues were the complex regulations around producing cannabis under the post-legalization rules.

After working with the municipality, the Agricultural Land Commission, and other government bodies on the first site, in retrospect deThomas says they would have gone with their current location from the start if they’d known what the first site entailed.

The company bought its warehouse site in the summer of 2019.

Now the company’s master grower, Grant Curtis, says the company can start growing as soon as the licence is approved. They’re planning on using small, controlled rooms to create a premium product.

Like a lot of start ups in the still-new industry, deThomas said there have been unexpected roadblocks, mostly on the regulatory side, that have held up the project.

But deThomas and his crew are still working towards getting their products to market. Some much larger entrants have already stumbled.

Canopy Growth moved into the industry in a big way, rapidly becoming one of the largest growers in Canada, and by far the largest in Langley, operating a 1.3 million square foot operation in a South Aldergrove greenhouse complex.

The company ran into financial trouble and shuttered two B.C. facilities, including the Aldergrove one, in early March, laying off 500 people.

“I think it went through it’s initial wild west stage,” deThomas said of the cannabis market, which has only been legal since 2018.

As a much smaller company, Glen Valley Cannabis is aiming for boutique products and a slower and careful strategy to grow. When they start, they expect to use two-thirds of their current space, deThomas said.

“We feel we will grow as the market grows,” he said.

He believes companies have to have a niche.

“The Budweiser of cannabis is already out there,” said Stephen Ostensen, the head of business development.

They plan to follow the route of craft beer brewers, who have popped up with niche, high quality products across North America over the past few decades.

The emphasis on local also means selling cannabis in ways that other local farmers have utilized, according to Ostensen.

“We do plan on pursuing farm-to-gate,” he said.

Farm gate sales are a common option for local berry farms, egg producers, and dairy farms around Langley.

For cannabis, however, that would require regulations, likely at the provincial level.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: COVID won’t dampen Langley woman’s Halloween spirit

Tanya Reid posted a pair of videos offering suggestions of how trick-or-treating might look for her

Langley Field Naturalists offer free zoom presentations

Group, focused on conservation and education, meet on the third Thursday of each month

Federated Co-op says members should not be concerned after private Mountain Equipment sale

Jack Nicholson, Otter Co-op’s CEO, will always remain in Aldergrove to serve the community

Accident at 27nd Street and 28th Avenue in Aldergrove reignites crosswalk safety concerns

Township made motion to install stoplight at the problem intersection last March

B.C. records 98 more COVID-19 cases, most in Lower Mainland

One new senior home outbreak, Surrey Memorial outbreak over

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

Father hopes journey to aviation-safety program inspires hope

Former South Surrey resident Greg Sewell hasn’t given up on quest to mandate older-plane retrofits

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

$250K reward offered as investigation continues into Sea to Sky Gondola vandalism

Police also asking for specific footage of Sea to Sky highway around time of incident

Trudeau ‘disappointed’ by RCMP treatment of Sikh officers over mask issue

World Sikh Organization of Canada said taking Sikh officers off the front lines constitutes discrimination

Liberals reach deal with NDP on COVID-19 aid bill, likely averting election

NDP and the Liberals have reached an agreement on COVID-19 sick-leave

Most Read