UPDATE: Aphria Investing $55-million In Two Leamington Facilities

Aphria has announced a major investment in Leamington.

The Board of Directors has approved a $55-million capital project to build a state-of-the-art Extraction Centre of Excellence in Leamington.

The facility will conduct a wide range of cannabis extractions and produce world-class cannabis concentrates.

Construction will begin immediately and the facility is scheduled to release its first concentrates by March 2019.

Company CEO Vic Neufeld says the centre gives Aphria a 'significant competitive advantage in cannabis concentrates.'

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Aphria CEO Vic Neufeld (Photo courtesy of www.aphria.com)

He says this is for research and development of consumer products for the recreational market.

"How do we now move the needle today, knowing it takes a long time not just in terms of the extraction technology, but also the research and development behind making the right formulations," he says.

He gives the example of making a cannabis infused chocolate bar.

"If you want to infuse it with cannabis oil, that oil has to be at a refined level.  It has to be what's called fractionated distilate to make sure that there's a homogeneous mixture in every square of that chocolate bar for example."

Neufeld explains about half of the capital investment is in the Extraction Centre and the rest will go toward a greenhouse expansion in Leamington.

He says the facility will be the centre of industry-leading R&D and commercial production of next generation cannabis concentrate products.

It will bring Aphria's total annualized capacity to 255,000 kgs.