Health Canada has suspended the licence of Victoria-based cannabis grower Evergreen Medicinal Supply, effectively shutting down the operations of the six-year-old firm.
Citing non-compliance with a number of regulations in the Cannabis Act including production and inventory control, Health Canada suspended the company’s operations Aug. 9.
Health Canada said in a statement that its regulators conducted an unannounced inspection of Evergreen Medicinal Supply’s facility in Central Saanich on April 29.
That inspection resulted in “a number of critical observations and an overall non-compliant rating for the inspection.
“The non-compliance related to good production practices, record-keeping, inventory control and adherence to licence controls.
“On Aug. 9, Health Canada suspended Evergreen Medicinal Supply Inc.’s licences to protect public health and safety, including preventing cannabis from being diverted to the illegal market, as a result of non-compliance with certain provisions of the Cannabis Act and Cannabis Regulations.”
Before its licence was suspended, Evergreen Medicinal was authorized to cultivate, process and sell dried and fresh cannabis, cannabis plants and cannabis seeds to both provincial and territorial distributors and directly to patients authorized to use cannabis for medical purposes, Health Canada said.
“However, before issuance of the suspension, it sold cannabis exclusively to other cannabis licence holders,” the Health Canada statement said.
Evergreen Medicinal has provided a response to the licence suspension and says it is working on corrective actions, the statement said.
Health Canada said it will review that response and consider it in an ongoing decision-making process.
Evergreen did not respond to requests for an interview on Tuesday.
The company has also run afoul of its landlord.
In July, B.C. Supreme Court ruled Evergreen had to hand over the keys to its concrete building at 6922 Lochside Dr. as a result of dispute over unpaid rent.
The company was given until Aug. 31 to hand over the keys and vacate the premises.
But building owner Philip Illingworth said that hasn’t happened.
The Victoria real-estate agent said Evergreen instead filed an appeal that he has been told will be heard in October.
The case centres around unpaid rent of more than $425,000, accrued in the three years before Evergreen had an occupancy permit for its facility.
Illingworth and Evergreen had a five-year lease for the property that started Jan. 1, 2014, with an option to renew for another five years.
Illingworth alleged he was owed rent for the period January 2014 to February 2017, while Evergreen claims its obligation to pay rent began in August 2017, when it was issued a municipal occupancy permit for the premises.