SKOPJE, North Macedonia — In a desolate industrial zone of this capital city, a cannabis grow house is under construction that, when finished, will span 178,000 square feet, about the size of a Walmart superstore. At full capacity, 17 tons of marijuana a year, worth about $50 million, will be harvested. Among the planned offerings is an American strain known as Herijuana, a portmanteau of “heroin” and “marijuana,” which has received some rhapsodic online reviews.
“I feel blown to the dome omg,” wrote a fan on Leafly, a cannabis review site. “It also gave me the ability to rap.”
Pharmacon, the company behind this operation, has everything it needs for a thriving, dome-blowing business, including contracts with buyers in Germany, Poland, and the United Kingdom. Construction here in Skopje has slowed in recent days because new coronavirus regulations restrict the number of people who can work in groups. But the building will soon be completed and then Pharmacon will face a very different kind of impediment: the government.
“They told everyone this is a huge opportunity for a new industry,” said Zlatko Keskovski, a former karate instructor turned cannabis entrepreneur, who works for Pharmacon. “They said they would have a good law passed in a few months. That was almost two years ago.”
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