It has taken more than four years to cultivate, but a new $6 million Black-owned marijuana growing and processing facility is scheduled to open in Inkster this fall.
Members of the Inkster City Council first approved the city-ordinances allowing the facility in October of 2019. Groundbreaking at the huge, 25,500-square-foot building took place last Friday. The cannabis growing and distribution facility is being built by Michigan Agricultural Services.
Mark Stockdale, the founder and CEO of the business said that financing and capital investment were hurdles the company had to overcome during the planning of the facility.
“We've had financial humps that we've had to get over. We're coming from way behind. We don't have access to capital like a lot of other ethnicities.”
In addition to the raising of capital, the lack of Black operators in the marijuana industry prompted the direction of the business, Stockdale said. His wife, Christina McPhail-Stockdale, who serves as chief legal counsel for the business, will provide legal expungement services for those with criminal records who are hoping to work in the cannabis industry.
That decision was prompted by Stockdale's struggle and supported by Sahir Al-Salam, who serves as the community liaison and head of investor relations for the company. They agreed that their struggle in financing was not unique and prompted their decision to attempt to “give back” to the community.
“It's important that not only do individuals get an opportunity to work in the cannabis arena, but to be eligible to do so,” McPhail-Stockdale said. “And as we all know, felonies and certain convictions can be a hindrance to work any job regardless if it's cannabis or not.”
The new building at 2615 Bayham in the city will distribute both medical and recreational facility and Stockdale said the facility will distribute to dispensaries. He said future plans include branding of cannabis products by Michigan Agricultural Services.
The facility is expected to be open this fall utilizing a portion of the building and could employ as many as 50 workers when complete.
Stockdale said the company would begin following up on job applications and employment inquiries next week.
To apply, email islaverdesstaffing.com.