Organigram expects layoffs, production decrease from COVID-19

Canadian cannabis company Organigram is anticipating voluntary and nonvoluntary layoffs as well as a slowdown in production and packaging as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The New Brunswick-based producer is currently “managing its production and staffing levels at its Moncton facility – where not all functions can be addressed remotely – to protect the health of its employees and the community,” the company said in a news release.

“The company currently expects that its workforce will be materially reduced as a result of voluntary and company-imposed temporary layoffs to facilitate adequate social distancing while the COVID-19 situation lasts,” Organigram noted.

“This will result in corresponding production and packaging reductions.”

The company added that it is too early to say how many employees might be laid off, or how much production might be affected.

In the same news release, Organigram said its licenses for standard cultivation and processing as well as sale for medical purposes were renewed by Health Canada.

The federal health department also approved the licensing of the remainder of its Phase 5 expansion, Organigram said.

Health Canada’s Cannabis Directorate is reducing on-site field inspections until the end of the month because of the pandemic, according to one producer.

Toronto-based conference company Lift announced layoffs last week because of the pandemic.

Shares of Organigram are traded on the TSX and Nasdaq stock exchanges.

For more of Marijuana Business Daily’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic and its effects on the cannabis industry, click here.