Medicinal cannabis plantation producers are high on the list of potential buyers for one of New Zealand’s most productive chrysanthemum hothouse nurseries which has been placed on the market for sale.
GAIT Flowers Nursery in the Hauraki Plains produces 15 varieties of chrysanthemum – encompassing yellow, white, pink/mauve, red and green colourings.
In the just completed 2018/2019 production year running from June to May, the GAIT Flowers nursery harvested 464,251 stems – nearly 43 percent more than for the 2015/16 growing year.
Now the GAIT Flowers Nursery freehold land, buildings and business at 346 Reservoir Canal Road are being marketed for sale as a going concern for $1.3million plus GST through Bayleys Hamilton.
Salesperson Josh Smith has already had a potential buyer looking at the property who expressed a serious interest in converting the substantial Kerepehi nursery infrastructure into what could be New Zealand’s first commercial scale medicinal cannabis growing operation.
The business’s temperature, humidity, and light-controlled greenhouse and shedding infrastructure consist of a pair of three-bay greenhouses, one two-bay greenhouse, two propagation houses, a three-bay implement shed and skyline garage. Combined, the greenhouses encompass some 4,214 square metres of covered growing space.
“In its current entity as an established chrysanthemum supplier with a long history of producing quality stems, all product is sold to one wholesaler at an agreed price – allowing for highly accurate budgeting for the business’s income,” Mr Smith said.
“Two converted shipping containers provide storage facilities for the cut stems before they are sent to market. The business chattels also include a 161 square metre open-plan four-bedroom owner/manager’s home,” he said.
“The nursery currently draws on council-supplied water for its irrigation. There is provision on the property for installing a ‘green’ water supply system that could utilise water collected off the hothouse rooftops and be diverted into holding tanks – with an area between the sheds kept aside specifically for this potential.”
“Heating within hot houses is currently run throughout the colder months by waste oil burners. Productivity has been further increased year-on-year by the development and implementation of good old fashioned ‘Kiwi ingenuity’ - which has seen the installation of bathroom-style under-floor heating placed under the propagation trays where the seedlings bloom.”
In summer, the hothouse roof tops and sides are opened up to natural warmth. Nutrients are supplied to the plants and soil via the automated watering system.
The GAIT Flowers Nursery business currently employs seven part-time staff and two school students on weekends – equating to four fulltime staff, and the two owner/managers working in a ‘hands-on’ capacity in the day-to-day running of the business equating to approximately 10 hours a week. The nursery sends freshly-picked deliveries three times a week to its Auckland wholesaler, who has expressed a desire to buy as many stems as GAIT Flowers can produce.
The existing GAIT Flowers production buildings sit on two hectares of flat land surrounded on three sides by dairy farms. The property comes with a
four-bedroom owner’s residence with adjoining staff offices and lunchroom facilities.
“The hot house buildings only occupy some 50 percent of the land at 346 Reservoir Canal Road. There is an opportunity to expand the number of hothouses even further within the current boundary – whether that be for the production of chrysanthemums or commercial quantities of medicinal cannabis,” Mr Smith said.
“As a going concern business, the GAIT Flowers enterprise would provide substantial holding income for a potential medicinal cannabis horticulturalist while the necessary legislation to legalise production is passed through Parliament.
“Should a new owner look to convert the premises into a large-scale medicinal cannabis production and cultivation factory in the future, the location and lay-out of buildings on the property would make it relatively easy to adapt the venue into a highly-secure site through the likes of installing electrified perimeter fencing and lighting towers, alongside the building of traffic movement landscaping and immoveable barriers.”