Tucked in a modest industrial mall in an industrial location of Secaucus, New Jersey, across the Hudson River from Manhattan, sits Harmony Dispensary. Behind its unassuming storefront, Harmony prides itself as getting an particularly higher typical amongst the Garden State’s health-related marijuana cannabis outlets. Though dispensary consumers do not get to see it, all of the cannabis for sale at Harmony is grown on the premises, in a exclusive and state-of-the-art hydroponic operation.
Leslie Hoffman, Harmony’s communications director, says Harmony’s “biosecure facility” is setting a new typical for cannabis cultivation in New Jersey.
“We have the highest biosecure level in the state,” Hoffman stated. “There is no mandatory state regulation on this. As far as I know, we’re the only ones taking it to this level.”
Here’s how the program operates: Any person who enters the develop location has to initially “gown up” in a jumpsuit and go by way of an “air-shower” that removes any achievable traces of mold, mildew, mites or other contaminants. All air in the develop facility runs by way of charcoal and HEPA filtration (brief for higher-efficiency particulate air), as properly as a brine answer.
Meanwhile, the water that feeds Harmony’s cannabis plants is processed for purity. Municipal water enters the program, getting a “reverse osmosis” remedy just before reaching the plants. This pushes the water by way of ultra-fine membranes, thereby removing contaminants. Immediately after irrigation, the water goes to an ozone generator, which requires out impurities but keeps in nutrients. Personnel add additional nutrients as required and recycle the water back into the program.
The entire operation is computerized, which includes the water valves that are adjusted for each and every phase of the plant’s life. In truth, inside the develop space, Harmony has integrated automation into as lots of measures of the approach as they can. The plants sit on tables that move on a track program, advancing in increments just about every day or two, bringing them to workstations made for each and every stage of cultivation, which includes planting, vegetative, flowering and harvesting.
The program was created in-residence, and made with gear from other industries, but then retrofitted for cannabis cultivation. A employees of 35 is involved in the a variety of elements of the approach, from planting and cloning to harvesting and packaging.
“We differentiate ourselves on the industry as pure, constant, efficient, modern day medicine,” Hoffman stated.
Harmony is a single of six “alternative remedy centers” (as they are officially identified) now operating in New Jersey’s restricted health-related marijuana plan, with six additional licenses due to be authorized by year’s finish. Now, there are two each and every in the north, central and south regions of the state, with Harmony in the initially category.
Harmony is a new addition to New Jersey’s constellation of ATCs, as it took about a year to get the operation up and operating. Harmony received its license to develop in July 2017, planted its initially seeds that October and only received its license to sell the following June, as the samples from the initially harvest have been authorized.
“We opened June 18, and inside an hour of announcing our opening, we had sufferers,” Hoffman says. “We continue to see an enhance, as properly as a repeat client base.”
The dispensary now receives amongst 50 and 100 sufferers a day, frequently in the larger finish of that variety, according to Hoffman.
Development is anticipated, as membership in New Jersey’s health-related marijuana plan is escalating by about 100 sufferers a day, standing at almost 30,000 as of October 2018. New Jersey does not have recreational marijuana, although its new governor Phil Murphy has stated his intent to legalize cannabis for adult use in the near future.
Shaya Brodchandel, Harmony’s CEO, describes the dispensary’s guidance to new sufferers: “Try it, go slow, see what your reaction is, untill you discover what operates for you, and stick with that.”
Brodchandel says that back discomfort is a single of the most important situations that sufferers come in for, when anxiousness and PTSD are also popular complaints.
Harmony grows 10 strains total and displays them on electronic monitors in the lobby with close-up photos of the bud. Alongside each and every listed assortment is the percentage of THC and CBD, as properly as the proportion of sativa and indica in the genetic mix. The details on THC and CBD content material comes from testing carried out on all strains by the New Jersey Overall health Division at its lab in Trenton, with the final results posted on the net.
Harmony’s most common strains incorporate Green Crack, a 50-50 indica-sativa hybrid with an 18 % THC content material, a Purple Crack with related stats and Strawberry OG, a further hybrid with 21.four % THC.
Hoffman says that “extractions are the subsequent phase” for Harmony. As an Earth Day project in April, she installed beehives on the premises and hopes to harvest 200 pounds of honey this year. “We’ll retailer it till we have extractions, and then we’ll be prepared to sell cannabis-infused honey.”
When asked about Harmony’s future if Gov. Murphy fulfills his ambition to legalize recreational cannabis in New Jersey, Hoffman responds: “If it takes place, we will rise to it. But we’re hoping the health-related plan does not get rolled into the soil as the recreational industry comes in.”
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Initially appeared in Situation 34 of Cannabis Now. LEARN Much more