Last week, FarmaceuticalRx was awarded a license to grow and process medical marijuana in Pennsylvania.
Now, founder and CEO of FarmaceuticalRx Rebecca Myers is getting the site ready, which used to be the PPV Plate Processing building.
The facility, which is actually two buildings, is located at 680 and 660 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd., Farrell, PA.
It’s a bit of a homecoming for Myers, who grew up just outside of New Castle.
“It’s an area that employed members of my family, members of my family members’ extended family and many members of this community. So it’s wonderful to be bringing a new economy to this community,” she said.
FarmaceuticalRx has six months to be up and running.
The company will clean out the factory in the next six weeks. Many of the old machinery is still inside and old paint is chipping, along with many of the windows and doors still boarded up.
“This will be all removed and we’ll have multiple 2,000 square-foot growing rooms,” Myers said.
Once cleaning is done, construction will take four months, then there will be a state inspection.
Myers hopes to be growing by February 2019.
“It’s a very quick time frame but one we’ve been expecting and we’re ready to go,” she said.
The company will start with around 30 employees, but Myers wants to grow that number to around 100 to have a new research and development portion of the company.
“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity, to change healthcare really. Basically, we’re taking a new category of therapeutics and we have the ability to develop an R and D relationship around it,” Myers said.
The company plans to partner with local universities to recruit students to work in the research and development department before transitioning to full-time jobs.
Myers says she’s also making security a priority.
“We will at least have four guards on duty at all times,” she said.
The growing/processing plants’ two buildings will be under constant watch.
“Everything will be under surveillance, electronic gate, card access, monitoring systems,” she said.
FarmaceuticalsRx also has a dispensary, expected to open at 1865 Dresden Avenue in East Liverpool. But because the marijuana won’t be able to cross state borders, they won’t be able to sell it there.
Meanwhile, 38 more doctors in Ohio were approved this week to recommend medical marijuana, bringing the total to 222 in the state. Eighteen of those doctors are local.