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Jennifer Grebow is editor-in-chief of Nutritional Outlook.
With this license, Neptune is permitted to manufacture and purify cannabis extracts and oil and also to provide these services to other license holders.
Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. (Laval, QC, Canada), an extractor, purifier, and formulator of health and wellness products, announced a new license from Health Canada to process cannabis. With this license, Neptune is permitted to handle dried cannabis, manufacture and purify cannabis extracts and oil, and also provide these services to other license holders.
This move aligns with the company’s previously stated focus on cannabis extraction and goal to become one of Canada’s largest cannabis processors. “In 2017, we embarked upon a new strategic vision to position the company in growth markets such as the legal cannabis market and to become a global leader in cannabis extraction, purification, and formulation of value-added, differentiated products,” said Neptune president and CEO Jim Hamilton in a press release. “Since then, we have executed a carefully planned roadmap to ready our significant manufacturing capacity for production, secure multiyear commercial contracts with great companies like [Canadian cannabis firm] Canopy Growth, and expand our strategic relationships, recently beginning a collaboration agreement with Lonza, a global market leader for the production of unique, value-added capsules.”
Neptune expects to begin ramped-up cannabis extraction at its Sherbrooke, QC-plant soon, it says. The company is looking to complete a Phase II capacity investment to increase the facility’s input capacity to 200,000 kg of dried cannabis-up from a current capacity of 30,000 kg-by March 2019, plans for which the company says are on track.
The company is also looking beyond being a service provider. Its collaboration with Lonza means that it will “expand its strategy from a service provider to other license holders to a provider of differentiated cannabis products to customers in Canada,” its press release says, noting that Neptune is now “applying for additional authorization for sale of cannabis products from Health Canada…allowing for further distribution of finished-form cannabis products directly to consumers and patients.”