Budtenders for hire! Canopy Growth holds job fair to fill roughly 200 cannabis job

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Canopy Growth, which will produce most of Newfoundland and Labrador's legal cannabis, is holding a job fair this weekend in St. John's to start staffing both its retail stores and production facility.

The company held the job fair for its Tweed brand, with plans to fill 75-100 jobs at its four retail stores in St. John's, Conception Bay South, Mount Pearl and Corner Brook. Another fair will be held a later time to fill the more than 150 jobs for the Canopy production plant.

The job fair is taking place Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Rocket in downtown St. John's, and officials from the company said turn out was already great by mid-day Saturday.

"We love it. I think that's what we do as a company," said Mario Castillo, regional general manager with Canopy.

"We really focus on working in communities that want us there, and then we focus on creating jobs and opportunities for everybody who works for us."

Potential job candidates talk to staff from Tweed, which is the branch of the company that produces marijuana.

The retail jobs the company is looking to fill include store managers, cashiers (called budtenders), product information guides and security guards who would check identification when someone enters the store.

Cannabis legalization in Canada could be delayed from the initial targeted date of July 1, but Castillo said the company will be ready as soon as it happens.

He said the company is moving at a furious pace to get all of its operations up and running across Canada in time for legalization.

"Time is really the only challenge we face," he said. "We are ramping up really quickly, hiring people on a regular basis. But it's just an issue of time. We want to be ready, we want to be the best and we want to be first."

Gavin Chubbs hopes his botany skills and experience in retail will land him a job with Canopy Growth.

Those who showed up to the job fair got to sit down and do on-the-spot interviews in many cases, and the event attracted a lot of people from various backgrounds who want to get in on the ground floor of the marijuana industry before it's legalized.

One of those was Darryl Yetman, an industrial mechanic and millwright by trade. He and his wife have been following Canopy and he thinks it's going to be a long-lasting operation in St. John's.

"It's a new, great industry coming into St. John's and I hope I get the opportunity to work for them," he said.

Darryl Yetman is an industrial mechanic and millwright who is open to putting his skills to use for the legal cannabis industry.

Another person who came to Canopy's career fair was Gavin Chubbs, a cook by trade who has experience in retail and also has a bit of a green thumb — which he thinks makes him a viable candidate for Canopy Growth.

"I'm fascinated by legalization, and I've always been a plant lover," he said.

"I do love to grow my own [pepper] plants at home. I use a lot of technology that is used in the production of cannabis."

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