May 13, 2021, 5:27 p.m.
After just three years of operation, Tilray has announced the closure of its $ 30 million medical cannabis facility in the Enniskillen community.
In an email to Blackburn News, the company confirmed that High Park Farms is expected to close by September 2021.
Tilray said that when it merges its business with Leamington-based Aphira Inc., the company is “making changes to improve operational efficiency.” The company said it will focus local cultivation in Leamington and local production in its nearby London facility.
Enniskillen Township and Lambton County Warden Mayor Kevin Marriott said it was a shock and a disappointment to lose the area’s largest employer.
“COVID has already negatively impacted us on some jobs, so this is a major contributor,” said Marriott. “It’s really hard to say how this will affect some of these jobs.”
The 200 employees affected by the High Park closure will be asked to apply in either Leamington or London.
Marriott is confident that the website may be used by another company in the future.
“I am optimistic that something will grow there in the future,” he said. “They still build vegetable houses all over the place, so I’m sure it’s a prime piece of real estate that someone will be interested in, whether it’s cannabis or vegetables.”
In February 2020, Tilray announced plans to lay off 10 percent of its workforce to cut costs, but at that point confirmed its commitment to running Enniskillen.
The 100 acre property on Lasalle Line, which once housed the Enniskillen Pepper Company, includes 13 acres of greenhouse space.