Overseas Backers Push Ganja Co-Op For Jamaica

A group of international investors is looking to partner with local interests, particularly small farmers to corner the local and export market for ganja.

InCuBis International is working through the Ganja Growers & Producers Association (GGPASS) to have local farmers join a co-operative to control the marijuana industry “from seed to sale”, according to business consultant Tony Melcher.

Declaring that “the best weed comes from Jamaica”, Melcher carefully laid out InCuBis’ objectives as the “first incubation partnership in the world” at a Kingston forum.

“We’re not an investment company. We’re here to partner our intentions, our prospects, our business model is built on you and really partnering with you. We’re not here to change, we’re here to augment, assist and help you find the success that we’re all looking for,” Melcher said as he addressed a specially convened ganja investors’ symposium earlier this week.

He noted that Jamaica bears a competitive advantage by having some of the best ganja strains and growing methods in the world. At the same time, he warned, Jamaica will lose this competitive advantage if it doesn’t adopt a unified approach to the expanding opportunities in the world market.

“The rest of the industry is fragmented – they’re not all trying to work with each other – but we see a competitive advantage, not only in collaboration but having everything under one roof and unified,” Melcher said.

Citing the bauxite industry to cement his point, he told the symposium that in the face of a fast-dwindling resource Jamaica has not reaped the full benefit from it, while other interests have profited hugely. He urged Jamaican ganja growers not to make the same mistake.

“If this industry ends up becoming another bauxite, not only will it be a crime, but frankly you’ll only have yourself to blame, because everyone is well aware of the mistakes made in the past and you have a unique opportunity to unify in such a way that Government has to get behind it because this is the right route,” Melcher cautioned.

He said InCuBis is moving to acquire 200 acres of land in the first instance and, using the required licensing, to partner with Jamaican ganja farmers to develop a viable industry along cooperative lines.

“We’re going to acquire real estate for the sole purpose of renting it or leasing it back to people in this industry. We want to do this because land is the first principal need in the industry. We also know that when land is developed properly, and if the supply chain is taken into account, it can be the most productive,” Melcher said.

He said InCuBis will be taking advantage of all the opportunities along the value chain of ganja cultivation, processing and sale.

Caribbean 360