A medicinal marijuana company is crowdfunding to build its growing facilities in Normanby, South Taranaki.
Greenfern Medicinal Marijuana has launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise money to build on a site next to the Normanby hydro power station.
It aimed to raise between $500,000 and $2 million by February 1, with the size of the operation depending on the amount raised.
Director Tim Johnson said the bulk of the money raised in the campaign would be used for growing and extraction facilities, which he hopes to have up and running by the end of 2019.
An agreement with the power station operator would mean Greenfern's power usage was billed at a significantly reduced commercial rate, giving the company a huge competitive advantage, Johnson said.
"By reducing our cost of production, we will be able to offer products that are exceptionally high quality at an affordable price for the New Zealand market," he said.
"We think there is an untapped opportunity here to grow, manufacture and supply
sustainable, ethically produced products that help New Zealanders who are suffering, who are in pain.
"We want to help people who are looking for [an] alternative, more holistic approach to their medication intake. And we want to be able to do that at a price that Kiwis can afford."
Greenfern has applied to the Ministry of Health to cultivate medicinal cannabis for human medicinal and research purposes. The research will assist the development of the company's product range.
"The regulatory process is pretty fluid right now and we will be included in the Ministry's regulatory framework discussion that's coming up in April," Johnson said.
"We're confident we'll be granted the licences that we need shortly after April. And in the meantime, we have a Greenfern team member that is a current grower and holder of a hemp licence."
Johnson said the domestic market would be Greenfern's primary focus but there was a strong likelihood that there would be export opportunities.
"To the world, Greenfern will look extremely attractive. We'll be operating a sustainable, environmentally friendly business that is powered by renewable energy."
Greenfern is using Auckland-based Collinson Crowdfunding for its campaign.