Siksika, AB, November 4, 2016 – Siksika Nation Chief and Council, led by Chief Vincent Yellow Old Woman, have approved the submission of a mandatory license to produce pharmaceutical grade medical marijuana on Siksika Nation land, in an effort to diversify economic development opportunities and improve community development.
The application was filed in July, 2016 through Health Canada’s Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR) by a fifty-fifty (50%) joint venture between Siksika Resource Development (SRDL) and LDI Group, named Siksika Herbz Ltd.
Once approved, Siksika will be the first First Nation in Alberta to be granted a license to produce, enabling job creation and community development, and making Siksika a key player in the growing market.
“One of the leading factors in pursuing the Medical Marijuana(MM) industry is the potential to become one of the leading First Nation providers to an alternative health product. It’s an opportunity for Siksika Nation to take the lead in this industry as many First Nations will be replacing the once pursued Casino opportunity and will now focus on the MM industry. It is predicted that this new industry will offer opportunities for economic advantages and I’m excited Siksika Nation is moving forward,” said Siksika Nation Councillor Marsha Wolf-Collar.
Siksika Herbz Ltd. has committed to fund the $8.2 million, 25 000 sq.ft. state-of-the-art production and distribution facility to be located within the designated Siksika Industrial Park. Siksika will invest $6 million into the engineer design and construction of the building, while LDI Group has secured the proceeds to file the application and has committed to the operation management. The facility will deliver upwards of $14.4 million in annual revenue from dried cannabis alone, while specialty cannabis products will contribute exponentially to future sales growth.
President and CEO of SRDL Tom Many Heads states,” This initiative represents another opportunity for our Nation to build upon its own economy, creating long term career opportunities for Nation members, wealth creation through positive annual revenue growth and sharing, and finally, supporting a community sense of ownership and participation in one of the fastest growing sectors in Canadian business today!”
Health Canada has reported that the medical marijuana industry is expected to exceed $1.2 billion by the year 2024 as more individuals pursue holistic alternatives to address ailments such as pain, nausea, fibromyalgia, IBS, seizures, migraines, lack of appetite, etc.
The overall strategic plan and objectives of the initiative follows a Harm Reduction model that focuses on reducing opioid use and alcohol dependency within the community. The model is designed to provide programming to educate, train and counsel individuals on the proper use of medicinal marijuana, and re-connect individuals back to Indigenous traditional medicine and plant use.
Independent Chairmen of Siksika Herbz Ltd. Dr. Lyle Oberg is optimistic of the plan. “Medical Marijuana is playing an increasingly important role in harm reduction and pain control within vulnerable populations, and I am very pleased and excited to play a role in Siksika’s entrance into this burgeoning sector of the economy,” said Dr. Oberg.
Siksika Nation will expect the final approval of the initiative during the 2017/2018 year.
About Siksika Resource Development (SRDL): SRDL is committed to establishing long term prosperity for the Siksika Nation by maximizing revenues generated from the management and development of renewable and non-renewable resources and by providing Siksika Nation Shareholders with a viable return on all future investments.
For more information, contact Shane Breaker, GM, Retail & Construction Development Services at 1-403-734-5244 or email firstname.lastname@example.org