This post is brought to you by The Green Organic Dutchman.
For The Green Organic Dutchman (TGOD) - a licensed cannabis producer based in Canada - it's important to always plan ahead.
Making a commitment to organic growing makes the job “way more complex than conventional growing,” according to David Bernard-Perron - Vice President of Growing Operations for TGOD - but that process pays dividends when it comes time to harvest organic crops.
“We end up having a better quality of cannabis when we’re producing it organically,” he said. “It’s a better experience for the user, it’s a cleaner production for the planet.”
TGOD's organic approach means that they don't use artificial insecticides. Instead, the company has been building a population of "beneficial organisms" (e.g. insects) inside of their growing room. But these aren't just any ordinary bugs. They're selected for their ability to assist plant growth and remove pests naturally.
By not using a single streamlined growing process, TGOD gives the plant the opportunity to freely grow in the way that is best suited to its biology, allowing for more diversity in the mature crop.
"We have a bigger diversity of biology in the cell, and that really puts the plant in charge," said Bernard-Perron. "So, the plant gets in that system and really chooses which fungi, which soil-living organisms they team up with."
That doesn't mean TGOD takes a laissez-faire attitude towards their plants. Managing these unique growth operations requires both planning and careful supervision.
"Our organic cannabis has always been produced with more attention to detail, because we’re managing those biological systems, we’re managing the balance in our growing room," he noted.
He added that it takes a great deal of work on behalf of the grower to ensure that while the plant is given room to grow, it is also reaching its full potential.
“You need to see things coming and plan ahead of time, because the reports of those biological systems is driven by biology, and biology needs to establish, it needs time to do its work.”
Seeking to have these practices independently verified to confirm they were doing what was best for their plants, TGOD made sure that they were both Ecocert and Pro-Cert certified. This means their facilities were visited, their processes monitored and subsequently approved by two of the industry’s most discerning organic certification bodies.
TGOD’s commitment to organic growing practices doesn’t stop at the plants themselves. The company has also made a concerted effort to create sustainable solutions to benefit the environment and the community around them. Headquartered in Mississauga, Ontario, The Green Organic Dutchman has growing facilities in Ontario and Quebec, and has recently extended its reach to Jamaica and Poland as well.
Wherever their presence is felt, the company looks to have a positive impact on their surroundings.
They demonstrate their commitment to sustainability through by recyclable packaging, using energy-efficient LED lighting, and promoting environmental advocacy within in their local communities.
“I think it’s really good business to respect the environment in which you’re working, but also to respect the community,” said Mary-Lynne Howell - Community Affairs Coordinator for TGOD. “We take into consideration the land, the natural environment that we’re in, and work with the local groups to make it better for generations to come.”
For TGOD, laying this groundwork of organic growth, community management and sustainable business practices will help the company continue to thrive in the burgeoning legal cannabis landscape.
“When we plan everything ahead, we get a beautiful crop,” said Bernard-Perron.