Redbud Roots operation under construction
BUCHANAN — In a typically quiet stretch of industrial area along Post Road in Buchanan, the sound of hammering and sawing reverberated Thursday from a brick building at 448 Post Road — the soon to be site of the medical marijuana growing and processing facility, Redbud Roots.
The company was granted permission to establish its business by the city of Buchanan in February, and it is now awaiting approval from the state of Michigan.
Business partners Hunter Mishler, of Bedford, Michigan, and William Haas, of Niles, said they remain hopeful that the business will begin operating sometime this year.
“It’s been a long process, but we have met great people along the way,” Haas said. “We plan on doing great things for our community.”
As a grower and processor, the company will harvest and process marijuana for sale to provisioning centers. The roughly 5,000-sqaure-foot facility will house three flower rooms, where the end product will be created, among other features. At this time, Mishler said he is not quite sure how much medical marijuana the operation will produce.
Mishler and Haas will help to operate the business alongside four other partners, including Dave Murray, Chris Fanta and Jim Finley.
Haas, the director of agriculture for the operation, is a Buchanan native who said he wanted to root his business in his hometown.
“I think that this town has great potential,” Haas said. “The people that live in this community are some of the most warm and welcoming people you will ever find. … This is the perfect place for Redbud Roots to call home.”
Mishler will serve as the director of production, and will help to oversee the scientific aspects of the growing and processing of the medical marijuana products. He said the goal of the company is to supply southwest Michigan residents with safe, quality medicine.
Before joining forces with the business partners at Redbud Roots, both Mishler and Haas served as caregivers, helping to supplying primarily cancer patients with medical marijuana.
Both Mishler and Haas are also familiar with marijuana as a medicinal product as patients.
While waiting for state approval to operate the business, the partners have been busy working on revitalizing the interior of the building, installing an HVAC system and building the offices and individual rooms that will comprise the interior space. A number of security features will also be implemented as mandated by the state. Mishler likened the safety features to what the average bank uses to protect their facility.
“Certainly no moats with alligators,” Mishler said. “We have made sure to go above and beyond what the state requires. We are working with a security company out of Detroit that has a lot of experience in the industry to make sure that it is secure for us and anyone else working in the facility.”
Haas echoed this sentiment and said that the company has also been working closely with Buchanan City Police to assure safety.
As far as mitigating the smell of the marijuana, which has been a concern about the businesses in the industry across Niles and Buchanan, Mishler said each room will have air filtration to assure that the signature and potent smell of marijuana will be contained.
Mishler and Hass do not deny that there has been some opposition to their business, just like there has been to the industry in Niles. Nonetheless, they said they hope to work with residents and become a part of the community.
“We are here for the long term,” Mishler said. “We are not here to grow some plants, make some money and get out. We are here to be community partners.”
Haas said he and his partners felt that the majority of the city supported them in their efforts.
“In the beginning, there was a lot of opposition, but things have progressed really well,” Haas said. “The majority of the city has welcomed us, and I think that is going to continue, especially when they see how we are operating.”
Mishler encouraged anyone with concerns or questions about the business to visit the business’ webpage at redbudroots.com. Under the contact tab, people can leave their feedback and express any concerns.
Overall though, Mishler and Haas hope that when the business opens it will address the fear of the unknown that they said they feel some in the community may have.
“We understand the need as medicine. We are patients first and foremost and we are here to give that opportunity to everyone who needs it,” Mishler said. “We will never tell you cannabis is for everyone, but it should be available in the highest quality for people who do need it.”