Agriculture / Cannabis / Sector Profile
The city is one of the only North American jurisdictions to generate its own power, which is done through natural gas. Because of its power generation ability, there are no electricity transmission costs. A one million square foot greenhouse operating in Medicine Hat can yield up to $3 million in annual savings when compared to other Canadian jurisdictions.
Medicine Hat is home to 45% of Alberta’s total greenhouse area, up from 41% in 2010, including the 1.5 million square foot Big Marble Farms which is Alberta’s largest. Agriculture makes up 10.3% of Medicine Hat’s labour force, which is nearly identical to the construction industry at 10.7%. The unemployment rate at the end of 2017 hovered around the provincial average of 6%, with the wholesale and retail sector employing 13.5% of the city’s working population. Finally, wages and cost of living in Medicine Hat both register below the provincial average, providing costs savings without negatively impacting quality of life.
Medicine Hat producers have overnight road access to over four million people, including Calgary and Edmonton. The city’s location at the junction of highways one and three provides direct access to Vancouver and the Pacific Coast. Medicine Hat Regional Airport offers daily service to Calgary International Airport.
With Alberta’s largest greenhouse cluster, reliable low-cost electricity, available greenfield and brownfield development opportunities, and available workforce, controlled environment agriculture investors are able to set up operations in Canada’s sunniest city with confidence.
The City owns several undeveloped sections of land suitable for industrial use. Interested parties should contact the Land & Business Support Department for further information.
The Box Springs area is the fastest growing industrial and commercial development in Medicine Hat. There is access from Trans-Canada Highway #1, adjacent to the Town of Redcliff, and within the limits of the City of Medicine Hat.
BSBP has fully customized purchase options including leasing and purchasing and would be the fastest to market as it relates to construction with all services including public transit nearby.
Indoor Crop Production Feeding the Future (Newbean Capital Whitepaper, March 2015)
Cultivating Agtech (CB Insights, November 2017)
The dropping cost to operate farms and the ability to have farms in more environments (especially closer to the end consumer) means that growing produce has become more decentralized. This means fewer supply chain shocks, new types of farmers, less waste, and food produced closer to the consumer.
A Jeff Bezos-backed warehouse farm startup is building 300 indoor farms across China (Business Insider, January 2018)
How Vertical Farming Reinvents Agriculture (BBC, April 2017)
Vertical farming has plenty of applications, with the industry developing a number of different solutions. Everything from 70,000 square foot greenhouses designed to serve major metropolitan areas to vertical farms that can fit in a closet are under development.
How Private Equity Giant KKR and Sundrop Farms Are Spending $100m on Indoor Agriculture (Agfunder News, April 2016)
In 2016, Sundrop Farms opened its 20-acre greenhouse in South Australia. The facility generates its own solar power and desalinates salt water for its own use. This facility advances the idea that food can be grown under cover in typically inhospitable environments.