Delta 9 gets green light for automated cannabis packing line

Other expansions to the grow facility postponed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic

Delta 9 gets green light for automated cannabis packing line

Cannabis company Delta 9 has government clearance to begin using its on-site, automated packing and processing facility.

“This approval will allow us to streamline and automate our packaging and labelling activities and improve our ability to bring consumer-packaged cannabis products to market,” said Delta 9 CEO John Arbuthnot in a news release on April 13.

The processing line includes automated bottling, packaging, capping and labelling for consumer-packaged, dried cannabis products. Previously product bottled on site was done by hand. At capacity, the line can handle 25,000 kilograms per year. Delta 9’s current output is 8,325 kilograms per year, according to the news release.

“The excess capacity in the new production line will also allow us to source premium cannabis flower from other licensed producers, including the company’s micro-cultivation partners,” said Arbuthnot.

Delta 9 uses “grow pods” made of repurposed shipping containers as self-contained growing rooms for its cannabis plants. The company sells these as turnkey operations to small growers. Last year it sold 89, Arbuthnot said during a tour the Co-operator participated in earlier this year.

He added that the company planned to buy back some of the small-batch cannabis to be packaged and sold as “craft” cannabis.

Work was underway to expand Delta 9’s facilities to about 135,000 square feet from 80,000 square feet. However, due to the capital market environment in the wake of COVID-19, those plans are on pause.

Expansion will continue once things stabilize a bit, the company said.

“Our goal is to ensure that our current licensed production assets are operating at design capacity and we achieve efficient sell through rates while continuing with our organic expansion strategy,” Arbuthnot said.

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