486 workers lose their jobs when tomato growing facilities switch to cannabis

A fast-growing cannabis company has signed a contract to buy a huge greenhouse south of Camarillo, currently operated by Houweling’s Tomatoes.

It is the former owner of the tomato growing business, Casey Howelling, who has begun working on a ballot that will allow wholesale cannabis to grow, process, distribute and sell in unincorporated areas. It’s a transaction that has been going on since at least 2018. County area.

Houweling is the owner of Glass Investments Projects, a major financial backer of MeasureO passed in November.

An important ballot rule was that cannabis could only be grown in existing greenhouses or warehouses. As a result, the 5.5 million square foot facility has become extremely valuable.

However, according to county records, Houweling sold the building to CEFF Camarillo Property, LLC, which has an address in Portland, Oregon, for $ 71 million in January 2019. It was before the ballot passed. By 2020, Houweling no longer owns a tomato growing company bearing his name.

According to a July news release, CEFF Camarillo Property sells a large greenhouse to Carpinteria-based Glass House Brands. A Glass House spokesman did not confirm the sale price of the facility, but reportedly it was over $ 100 million.

A spokeswoman said it would be the largest cannabis greenhouse in the world.

Houweling officials recently submitted notices to the states and counties announcing the closure of their high-tech tomato growing business on 645 Laguna Road. According to the notice, 486 workers will be permanently dismissed, agreeing to surrender the property by September 30.

This letter was sent to comply with the California Workers Coordination and Retraining Notice (WARN) Act, and companies must notify state and local authorities of mass dismissals.

Ventura County supervisor Kelly Long said the number of people fired was a nuisance.

“I am very worried about the unemployment of the number of employees being dismissed for Houweling Tomatoes and hope that this will bring the same or more opportunities,” the supervisor said.

For a long time, county officials said the facility would work to ensure that it was a good neighbor in the area, primarily surrounded by farms.

“We will work with all companies in the same way that we follow policies and ordinances to ensure public safety,” Long said. “Make sure odors don’t matter.”

According to Glass House officials, the company is a rapidly growing vertically integrated company with 23 retail outlets planned by next year.

The company went public last month and its shares are listed on the Canadian Stock Exchange.

According to the company’s website, the company currently operates greenhouses in Santa Barbara County and Canada.

“Glass House Brands recently acquired a 5.5 million-square-foot greenhouse facility that gives the brand the world’s largest sustainable supply chain footprint, and the expansion of its clinics has made it the largest number of stores in California. Expanding retail presence. With increased capital, these developments will allow the company to continue its rapid scale-up and grow its “green” cannabis in a whole new way, “said a company official. Stated on the website.

Houweling personnel did not respond to phone calls or emails regarding the sale.

For a long time, he said economic factors were likely to have influenced the decision to sell the tomato facility.

“In my understanding, growing tomatoes was not a profitable business,” she said.

486 workers lose their jobs when tomato growing facilities switch to cannabis

Source link 486 workers lose their jobs when tomato growing facilities switch to cannabis

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