A small First Nation's community on the border of Quebec and New Brunswick is making a big move in the cannabis industry. Madawaska is set to become the first reserve in New Brunswick to operate a licensed cannabis producer.
The First Nation is set to partner with the Newfoundland based company BeeHighVE, owned and operated by Rita Hall, who is poised to become one of the first Indigenous women to receive a license to produce cannabis in Canada. As the name suggests, BeeHighVe will specialize in CBD-infused honey while also offering other cannabis products.
The company will be opening a facility in Corner Brook, Newfoundland initially, but plans to open a second facility in Madawaska sometime in the near future, according to Madawaska Chief Patricia Bernard
"The minute we invested in the company, [Hall] provided the authorization and permission to move forward with the application to expand the company on the reserve in New Brunswick," Bernard told CBC.
Bernard hopes that Madawaska will be able to provide dispensaries across the province with product once the facility is operational.
"This is an opportunity to expand into production and a huge economic opportunity for the First Nation."
The Madawaska First Nation is already one of the most prosperous in the province, with debt levels far lower than the provincial per capita average. Now they're poised to possibly become one of the most prosperous in the country.