In 2001, Ottawa awarded a company called Prairie Plant Systems an experimental contract to grow pot in the old mine shaft. The program was launched with a beaming Allan Rock, then the federal health minister, touring the facility.
"It's a great operation," Rock said at the time.
But four years, and $24 million worth of taxpayers' money later, critics say Ottawa's experiment in medicinal marijuana has been a disaster.
In that time, the federal program has harvested about 1,800 kilos of pot. Almost half of that is not up to standard for human consumption, according to Health Canada. So the unmarketable pot is sitting on ice, with your tax dollars being used to study the "long term stability of the product under storage conditions."
In the meantime, registered users of medical marijuana are sourcing their supplies through “compassion clubs” scattered throughout the country.
Before they waste another $24 million, the feds might consider hiring some local talent. Otherwise, they should watch a few episodes of Marijuana Man Grow Show on pot.tv, produced out of Vancouver.