With an industrial engineering mindset, Nathalie Batten, Senior Vice President of Operations, joined Organigram after years of work in the oil and gas industry. Now she overlooks all operations at the three cannabis facilities, a job that is a male-dominated position across many industries. “With a total capacity of 85,000 kgs per year, our facilities include everything from cultivation to post-harvest. I supervise the production, maintenance, supply chain, engineering, quality assurance, and everything that has to do with executing the product.”

According to Nathalie, gender diversity is essential to a cannabis company’s success. “Because of the fast pace in the cannabis industry, companies need to adapt to developments quickly. Certain female characteristics are very well suited for that: women tend to have a collaborative mindset and are open to change and finding alternatives. We have found that for our company, the large percentage of women has been a great asset.” Organigram has a workforce that is 40% female. “30% of our manufacturing team is female, which is 10% above the average. 50% of Organigram’s executive team is female, and we have a woman as our CEO,” Nathalie says. “Adaptability is a core capability that we need for our organization to succeed.”

Reducing the cost per gram by half
Organigram currently has 131 commercial grow rooms. One of the advantages is having a microclimate in each room that is adapted to that specific cultivar. The company recently expanded its cultivation area, making it possible to drastically cut costs. “The cost per gram has been reduced by half, as the fixed costs are getting spread. Other factors also made that possible. We have switched to using LED lights, which reduced our power costs. The supply of water has become more efficient, and we reduced the number of nutrients we give to the plants. We also made a few changes in the environment to improve efficiency, and we introduced an automated line at our gummy facility. All of this together reduced our production costs quite significantly.”

The company largely contributes these achievements to Organigram’s team and focuses on innovation. “We have a great team, we didn’t overinvest, and we had strategic acquisitions to increase our portfolio,” Nathalie says. “Our core focus is innovation; we have a collaboration with BAT, and we have an R&D center where we focus on developing new, innovative products.”

“In Canada, there is still a lot of consolidation, and we are not expecting many more licenses to be given in the next couple of years. But I would say that Organigram is well positioned. We utilize all of our capacity, we are growing, and we continue to invest. We invest in our science, our processes, and innovation,” Nathalie explains. “Our strategy is basically to continue our work in Canada and to also grow business internationally, all while optimizing our production costs to be able to remain profitable.”

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