Grower says the 'support local' mantra applies to cannabis too

Despite the Ontario government overseeing the sale and distribution of the province’s cannabis industry, a push to “support local” is happening in Simcoe County. 

As of 2020, Ontario had the highest number of cannabis production companies with 112, followed by British Columbia in a distant second at 62. Simcoe County is home to a few large cannabis producers, one of which is Caramel Cannabis in Oro-Medonte Township, south of Orillia. The company was launched in June 2019.

Co-founder Dustin Laren says Caramel falls into the cannabis industry's craft section, which mainly deals in small-batch, hang-dried and hand-cured products. Like many others who are involved in the cannabis sector, Laren was in a different line of work before.

“I come from real estate development, but there has been a really strong team built around us here at Caramel,” says Laren, who has been in the cannabis industry for four years. “Our growing team comes with 15 years experience and one of our salespeople comes from a large LP (licensed producer).


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