When cannabis was federally legalized in Canada in October 2018, Christina Lake Cannabis Corp. immediately purchased land and established its footprint in the country’s cannabis industry. The company’s cultivation license was approved in March 2019, and by May 2020 Christina Lake Cannabis had 22,500 plants across 20 acres of outdoor cultivation.
As Christina Lake continues to fine-tune its production processes and position itself for future success, the company is adamant that its partnership with Cann Drying Systems played a crucial role in the Canadian cultivator’s early success.
“We brought them in since day one,” says Nicco DeHaan, chief operating officer at Christina Lake Cannabis. “We knew there was no way to bring in the volume we were talking about in a way we felt comfortable with, so since day one this has been baked into our plan. We worked with Cann Systems to adjust their current model and upsize it and customize for our building. It's worked out well.”
However, Christina Lake’s drying process wasn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. When initially researching drying systems for its operation, Christina Lake knew it wanted to implement dehumidifiers, but struggled to find a product sized for its operation.
“Finally, after turning over rocks, we found Cann [Drying Systems] and had a conversation,” DeHaan says. “We worked with them, and the numbers started looking like what we wanted to do, and it worked.”
While Cann offers a range of turnkey solutions, with customers across North America, South America, and Europe, the company customized equipment specifically for Christina Lake’s operation, which spans more than 950,000 square feet right near the Canada-U.S. border.
“Our system is 100% customized,” DeHaan says. “We basically built our own dry chambers and then Cann adjusted their plenums to fit within our dry chambers.”
The custom equipment from Cann Drying Systems helps Christina Lake improve its drying process for more than 15,000 pounds of wet product per day during harvest season, according to DeHaan, which he says is any cultivator’s biggest challenge.
“The biggest [benefit] with bringing in Cann Systems is how much product we can dry through the dryers,” DeHaan says. “That's really the financial benefit: the fact we planted 20 acres and 22,500 plants and we took in 20 acres and 22,500 plants.
"The dryers actually exceeded what they were specified for. We got a bit of wiggle room with our drying capacity, and we're able to stretch it out a bit longer to compensate for that," DeHaan adds.
Another unique benefit of Christina Lake’s partnership with Cann is each company’s focus on terpene extraction.
“Very few, if any, [products] have the scale of the amount of terpenes that these things [Cann Systems’ products] have the ability to capture,” DeHaan says. “Usually when guys are capturing terpenes, they're capturing very small amounts. We believe that with the [Cann Drying] system, we can catch very large amounts of very high-quality terpenes.”
As the new year unfolds and the cannabis industry continues to grow, DeHaan is excited for the future of Christina Lake’s partnership with Cann Drying Systems.
“I think it's going to continue to be strong and [we] look forward to evolving it," DeHaan says. "We believe it's one of the best drying systems available out there and that's why we went with it.”