2012- The District of 100 Mile House is leading the way in creating an industrial-scale hemp producing agricultural network that stretches from Ashcroft to Vanderhoof. The pilot phases of the project began in 2006, and through years of preliminary development work, an emerging industrial-scale hemp industry moved into a pre-commercial phase in 2011. While the farms that produce the hemp will be located across British Columbia, there are plans to see a processing facility located in 100 Mile House.
An industrial-scale hemp processing facility in 100 Mile House is envisioned to manufacture a variety of hemp products ranging from environmentally-friendly green building materials such as insulation products and 'hempcrete' to animal bedding. The establishment of a hemp processing facility in conjunction with a large network of hemp agricultural producers is being undertaken in response to a growing need to diversify local economies across British Columbia, and the mountain pine beetle affected Cariboo region in particular.
"The District of 100 Mile House has been looking toward projects like our industrial hemp project for much-needed economic diversification. This project has been ongoing for seven years and allows two avenues of opportunity; namely the green-building industry and industrial hemp processing."
Mel Torgerson, Councillor, District of 100 Mile House
Positive Economic Impacts in 100 Mile House
100 Mile House's Industrial Hemp Initiative is building on existing agricultural strength in the region, and is creating positive economic impacts across British Columbia. 200 acres of land surrounding 100 Mile House will be needed to produce industrial hemp, providing a reliable crop choice that, once established, will increase the level of certainty for returns on crop investment.
It is anticipated that an industrial hemp processing facility will be constructed once the pilot project is successfully concluded and hemp production becomes well established.
Private investment will be required to fully realize the vision for an industrial-scale hemp processing facility in 100 Mile House. To date, the pilot project was successful in generating and enhancing investor confidence in the emerging industrial hemp industry in British Columbia. When fully functional, this facility will directly create a number of full-time employment positions providing a stabilizing force for 100 Mile House's local economy with positive affects for local agricultural producers throughout the Cariboo region.