Article by Karen Paton-Evans, Growth Op
Surrounded by agricultural lands and greenhouses, it seemed only appropriate to Greg Kazarian and Phil Bradbury to start retailing Ontario’s newest legal crop, cannabis, in Kent and Essex Counties.
On Saturday, Oct. 10, the business partners welcomed customers to the grand opening of their shop, Higher Limits Cannabis Company, located at 52 Catherine St. in Blenheim. Among the well-wishers were Chatham-Kent Mayor Darrin Canniff and representatives of Chatham-Kent Economic Development.
Representatives from AgMedica Bioscience Inc., a licensed producer cultivating cannabis in its Chatham facility, were also on site to speak with customers about the company’s recreational cannabis brands, Vertical and Five Founders.
“Higher Limits and AgMedica share a mission to educate people about cannabis. Some people are sceptics, others want to try cannabis but don’t know much about it and are ready to learn,” Kazarian notes.
Figuring a straightforward way to help customers discern between various types of cannabis is to let people see and smell them, the partners are displaying 26 transparent sniff jars. “Customers see the flowers in each jar and puff out the smell of the cannabis cultivar before choosing which to buy,” says Kazarian.
“There is more to cannabis than the cultivars,” he adds. For instance, the terpenes that the flower contains can change how the flower affects you.
As a one-stop shop for cannabis consumers, Higher Limits offers flowers, pre-rolls, vaporizers, concentrates, edibles, topicals, CBD oils, seeds and accessories. Kazarian says, “Our inventory is changing frequently as we carry whatever the government of Ontario makes available to us.”
With the Blenheim location now open, the partners are preparing for the winter launch of Higher Limits Cannabis Company at 400 Sandwich St. S. in Amherstburg, followed by the opening of a store at 170 McNaughton Ave. W. in Chatham, likely in spring 2021.
“When the Government of Ontario initially let private retailers sell cannabis, a lottery was held for the first licenses in January 2019. The majority of applicants were in large city centres. Greg and I saw a huge gap for smaller communities that also wanted to access cannabis. People in Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent originally had to go to London to make in-person purchases. We thought that was an issue,” says Bradbury.