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When Cannabis Goes Corporate

Tweed MMJ CanadaNew York Times
By Dave Chan

Tweed, a Canadian medical marijuana company moves into a former Hershey’s chocolate plant which closed six years ago.

Hershey stopped producing chocolate in Smiths Falls, Ontario, six years ago. The work went to Mexico, but the factory remains, along with reminders of the glory days: A sign that once directed school buses delivering children for tours. A fading, theme-park-style entrance that marks what used to be the big attraction — a “Chocolate Shoppe” that sold about $4 million of broken candy and bulk bars a year.

The once ever-present sweet smell of chocolate is gone, too. In the high-ceilinged warehouse, where stacks of Hershey’s bars and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups once awaited shipment, the nose now picks up a different odor: the woody, herbal aroma of 50,000 marijuana plants.

The new owner of this factory, at 1 Hershey Drive, is Tweed Marijuana. It is one of about 20 companies officially licensed to grow medical marijuana in Canada. The Canadian government, which will collect taxes on the sales, estimates that the marijuana business could generate more than 3.1 billion Canadian dollars a year in sales within the next decade.

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