Organigram is a licensed producer of medical and adult-use retail cannabis. They are one of Canada’s original licensed cannabis producers, having launched in 2013 and received their license in April 2014.

Ray Gracewood, the company’s Senior Vice President, Marketing and Communications, says Organigram continues to see incredible business growth in New Brunswick. They now employ approximately 700 people in its Moncton operation.

“It’s indicative of the approach we’ve taken since day one, which is to be not only a local leader within the space but to lead the industry in Canada,” says Gracewood. “With the country’s strong progressive approach to cannabis, we have a great opportunity to be a significant international player as well.”

May 8 saw Medical Cannabis Week bring a national cannabis event to Moncton. Timed with the event, ONB spoke to two of Organigram’s senior leaders. We began with Ray Gracewood. (Note: Part two will publish later today)

ONB: What sets Organigram apart from the pack?

Organigram New Brunswick Gracewood: It’s as simple as a focus on execution and doing what we say we’re going to do. Whether it’s with our partnership network or medical patients or retail customers, we’ve done a great job of building a reputation as a very strong partner within the Canadian cannabis supply chain. We have delivered on our promises and met all expectations.

We have a state-of-the-art facility in Moncton that rivals any other in Canada and we’re entirely data-driven. We created our own internal software — OrganiGrow — that serves as our nervous system. We use data to make educated decisions about how we scale and grow, and create consistency for our patients and consumers. When people enter our facility and learn about our unique three-tiered growing system they can see for themselves what sets us apart.

We’re proud of that system, which originally began out of necessity due to the initial lack of space we had. Now, however, it’s become an incredibly efficient model for us to maximize our footprint and ensure that every ounce of energy we put into our facility is represented in a greater yield of product.

Finally, I’d say our focus on innovation and what we call Cannabis 2.0 is a differentiator. In the adult-use market, we can currently offer dried flower, pre-rolls, and cannabis oil. This fall, regulation kicks in that will allow us to expand our portfolio into edibles, topicals, concentrates, and vaporizable products. So, we’ve committed to research and development to make sure that, through our continued expansion plans, we are structured to be able to fully take advantage of as many of those new opportunities as possible. We plan to be competitive in both today’s products and tomorrow’s.

It’s great to see that confidence.

Right now, the cannabis industry is in an exciting place in its life cycle; a lot of rapid growth and a lot of opportunities. We’ve already created a strong foundation and we recognize that this is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. We want to build a business that will be stronger in two, five, and 10 years down the road. Cannabis is not a strike-while-the-iron-is-hot sort of thing for us.

What can you say about the relationship between Organigram and ONB?

The best thing ONB has done for us, at least for my position, is create relationships. I speak at so many industry events and have built a strong network now within the industry. We have leveraged ONB and the relationships they have with other players across the industry, public sector, and academia, to build that network. They’ve really helped us understand who in the space we could partner with.

When I speak at those events I get told that we’re the envy of our peers in terms of where we chose to do business, and that’s down to the level of support we’ve received here via agencies like ONB. There has been an infrastructure created that shows great support and understanding of the cannabis opportunity. A huge part of our growth towards being a 1.5-billion-dollar company is the fact that we’ve had that provincial support. There’s plenty of reasons to choose New Brunswick and for us, the relationship with ONB is at the top of that list.

Interested in a role with Organigram? Visit their careers page.

Visit our Cannabis sector page to learn more about ONB’s work in that sector and connect with our team.

Cover image via Organigram

Written by Jason Boies