When the Hershey factory came to Smiths Falls, Ottawa in June of 1963, it brought jobs, tourists, and money to the town. When they shut down the factory, considered "the Willy Wonka Wonderland of Eastern Ontario," the jobs, the tourists and the money left.
Now, the building is set to become magical once again. Ottawa-based medical marijuana company, Tweed Inc. has set its sights on the 470,000 sq. ft. building as their new medical marijuana manufacturing plant.
In June, the Canadian Department of Health said that people were no longer permitted to grow medicinal marijuana in their homes. Instead, they're allowing companies to manufacture and supply the drug. Canada has begun replacing homegrown pot production with large, quality-controlled medical marijuana farms last month. The move will eventually serve half a million medical marijuana patients and make $1.3 billion annually.
This means jobs, revenue and buzz for the town. For Mayor Staples this is personal and he couldn't be more pleased. His brother lost his battle with colon cancer and medical marijuana "made his last days on this Earth much more bearable."