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Urban Wellness

US (NM): “Our new facility has the capacity to quadruple our production”

With the adult-use cannabis market having just recently opened in New Mexico, Urban Wellness has been well prepared for the increased demand. “Our new facility adds an additional 17,500 square feet to our original 12,000 square foot facility. For the moment, we are opening the new facility with double the production of what we’re currently doing, but it has the capacity to quadruple our production,” says Dave Muscarella, CEO of Urban Wellness, a vertically integrated cannabis company. In both facilities, the company is using the Pipp Horticulture vertical grow racks. “When we realized we could almost double our production in the same footprint, we decided to start growing vertically.”

Growing vertically
Urban Wellness’ original facility has a two-tier production in almost all rooms except for two rooms with three tiers. The new facility has 144 light grow rooms that are double-stacked. “The first couple of years of our cultivation, we did not grow vertically. Back in 2018, we decided to switch over to LED lighting and to vertical cultivation.” Urban Wellness was inspired after visiting a grower in California who was using the Pipp Horticulture systems. “After that visit, we were all in. Just by rethinking our grow layout, we could almost double our production in the same footprint we already had. After seeing the Pipp systems in action, and wanted to make use of their Vertical Air Solutions systems as well, so we quickly made our decision. Now, we have also added their vertical racks to our new facility.”

Boosting the plants to their highest potential
Urban Wellness believes that if the plants are provided with the proper environment and support from the start, they will have an easy time reaching their full potential. According to Adam Valdez, Chief Operations Officer, starting with healthy mother plants is important to ensure strong clones are available to be transplanted to the veg room. “We always take extras to ensure only the best of the best make it into rotation. Clones are then introduced to the veg room and provided the optimal vegetative growing environment to prepare the plant structure to support the flowering process. Once plants are in the flowering rooms, the growing team then cares for the plants throughout their flowering cycle, ensuring that the plant has everything available to produce the highest quality finished cannabis. We use metrics such as VPD, EC, PH, and PAR combined with the use of top-notch nutrients and food grade C02 to boost the plants to their highest potential.”

“We are a pesticide-free facility and believe strongly that they are not necessary if you can provide the optimal environmental conditions for the plant to thrive,” Adam explains further. “Every single plant in the facility is shown attention every day throughout the cycle to identify and mitigate any issues that may arise. Once plants finish the flower cycle, they are harvested and dried ‘on branch’ in a dark, cool, dry room. This slows the drying process and allows for unwanted chlorophyll and sugars to degrade and the compounds within the plant to convert to the proper cannabinoids and enhance terpenes. Once the proper moisture level is reached, the buds are ‘de-stemmed’ from the branches and placed into curing buckets to maximize potency, taste, aroma, and shelf life. Finally, all finished cannabis produced by Urban Wellness is hand trimmed to avoid damaging the delicate trichomes and provide the best user experience possible.”

High potency
When it comes to seeking out new genetics, there are many characteristics that Urban Wellness looks for. “The terpene profile is very important, and we only seek out genetics that provide you with that ‘smack you in the face’ aroma that everyone loves. When it comes to structuring, we seek to find genetics that will produce large tight buds that will cure solid,” Adam says. “Potency is another indicator of a solid genetic, and we strive to only produce genetics that have a THC potency of 25% or greater, providing the strongest effect for medical and recreational purposes. At the end of the day, we strive to nail down the best combinations of genetics to produce the best tasting, best smelling, and most effective form of cannabis to provide to our medical and recreational clients.”

For more information:
Urban Wellness

Pipp Horticulture 

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