SAXTON, BEDFORD COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — The new medical marijuana facility will be open in Saxton in the next few weeks, and the company opened its doors to the public for a first look.
Green Leaf Medical started in 2014 after CEO Phil Goldberg saw the effects medical cannabis had on a neighbor going through chemotherapy.
“She didn’t have any appetite, and to see that medical cannabis was able to stimulate her appetite, that was really my first insight in medical cannabis,” he said.
Company leaders said their new facility will bring jobs back to Bedford County. They saw the former Seton Plant in Saxton as a great location to do so.
The company has facilities in Ohio, Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania. This newest one stretches 274,000 square feet.
“It was a great opportunity. This building had been shuttered for 11 years. It used to be one of the largest employers in the county, and so, it was a great opportunity for the community, as well as Green Leaf to revive this facility and bring something back to the community,” Goldberg said.
Officials from Saxton and Bedford County were also on the tour. Lester Meck, the Saxton Borough Council President said the reaction from the community has been overwhelmingly positive.
“There have been minuscule opposition to this, and I think with education, they have even come around, and the whole community and, not just Saxton, but the broad topic of Bedford County has really embraced the idea of this facility being here and doing what they do,” he said.
The CEO said there was one thing that made the Saxton location stand our more than all the rest: the attitudes of the residents.
“There’s an eager, hungry workforce here of skilled worker, and…I think that if other businesses looked outside the box they would see that Saxton and Bedford county are really a tremendous place to locate your business,” Goldberg said.
Due to state law, no one other than investors, employees or workers in the medical marijuana business will be allowed in the facility once they start manufacturing the plants.
The company hopes to be up and running in the next few weeks.