Mission, B.C. company receives city OK to produce cannabis-infused drinks

A Mission beverage manufacturer received approval from the city on Monday (June 3) to make cannabis-infused drinks.

Council voted 4-1 to amend a zoning bylaw to allow food processing using cannabis in an industrial park zone.

Mission Naturals Inc. is a beverage manufacturing facility on Mission Way that incorporates vitamins, minerals, and other natural health products into flavoured beverages.

To start, the company plans to incorporate 10 mg of THC distillate into 355 ml cans in four flavours. THC distillate is the odourless liquid form of cannabis extracted from a cannabis plant.

“We will store a litre of THC distillate at a time in our facility which suffices to manufacture 85,000 cans of THC-infused beverage,” an email from the business attached to the council agenda reads.

Under a THC license with Health Canada, the business can’t participate in any form of cannabis plant growth, processing or cultivation.

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At Monday’s meeting, staff presented council with three options to consider: doing nothing, permitting the use of cannabis in food preparation for the entire industrial park zone, or permitting it for a specific site.

Coun. Jag Gill moved the third option for site-specific zoning and received support from Coun. Ken Herar.

“It allows council to go case by case. This is the first of its kind in our community, so it’d be nice to just see how this works out, and then we could open it up to the broader zoning,” Gill said.

However, Mayor Paul Horn and councillors Carol Hamilton and Danny Plecas supported the second option, so Gill withdrew his motion and attached his support as well.

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“By not having this in a zone, we may be actually making our community less appealing,” Horn said.

Per the staff report, Mission’s economic development department supported the proposal as well.

“As our community continues to navigate the opportunities and challenges presented by the expanding cannabis industry, it is crucial that we adopt policies that promote responsibly regulated operations that are in compliance with federal, provincial and municipal requirements,” the report reads.

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