Could medicinal cannabis be a cash cow for our poorest regions?

The Green World of Health and Wellbeing.

by Max Towle 

Hikurangi Enterprises wants to be front and centre in the medicinal cannabis industry. Photo/The Wireless.

A region disproportionately affected by weed now wants to profit from it.

Earlier this month, Pohatu Poutu made the short trip from Hicks Bay to Te Araroa with a firm number in mind.

Fifty bucks, he’d decided.

The 23-year-old teacher took a seat at Hinerupe Marae shortly before 5pm and clasped his hands.

For 90 minutes, he and a few dozen others listened to a business pitch.

This was the first of six public meetings on the East Coast. The Ruatoria-based company, Hikurangi Enterprises, was asking for investment in its plans to produce medicinal cannabis.

After hearing the pitch, Poutu put down $500.

“Lots of my whānau were encouraging everyone to go, so I went and had a listen and it sounded fantastic,” he recalls.

“I had decided to give…

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