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Avon Pot Company Eyes Fitchburg for Rec Sales

July 31, 2018

FITCHBURG -- An Avon-based cannabis company with roots out West wants to sell legal marijuana on Water Street.

“We’re trying to get into the retail business, and we saw that Massachusetts was opening up,” said Jack Carney, general manager of the Avon-based limited liability company Green Era.

Carney will be on hand at an outreach meeting 2 p.m. Thursday at the public library, when the community can ask questions and learn about planned security protocols, diversion from minors and how the company plans to positively impact the community, he said.

With roots in Seattle, Washington, Green Era applied to the city to open a recreational dispensary at 143-145 Water St.

It would span what is now two storefronts in Water Street Plaza, the commercial building across from Market Basket that also houses Domino’s Pizza.

Green Era is owned by Hai Qing Huang, according to records on file with the city. Huang forayed into the Massachusetts cannabis industry when a horticulture supply store he owned in Washington State relocated to Avon, according to Carney.

Carney said the company wants to open retail establishments at several locations in Massachusetts. An application for a retail establishment in Pittsfield was approved by the city and awaits provisional licensing from the Cannabis Control Commission, he said.

The Fitchburg retail establishment would be called Colonial Cannabis Company, according to Carney, and would sell only recreational marijuana, not marijuana for medical use.

The company plans to eventually sell cannabis-infused lotions and tinctures, products that can be vaporized then consumed, and edibles, he said.

Green Era signed an agreement with Galaxy Development of Auburn to lease 3,761 square-feet at the Water Street Plaza for up to 10.5 years, according to records on file with the city.

Plans include a 2,300 square-foot retail floor with identification checkpoint at the entrance and multiple security cameras, according to the records.

Carney said the company pursued retail shops in cities that are willing to host them. He said they moved forward with a shop in Fitchburg because local economic development officials were responsive and helpful.

“That just makes it easy for a business to navigate these waters, because every city and town you go to it’s a different procedure,” he said.

Green Era is in the process of negotiating a host-community agreement with the city, said Carney. It will petition the Planning Board for a required special permit on Aug. 21, according to Principal Planner Mike O’Hara.

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