Medical marijuana farm possibly in the works for Cochise County

Published: Sep. 19, 2013 at 1:49 AM MST|Updated: Mar. 2, 2018 at 4:22 PM MST
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WILLCOX, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Plans are in the works to open up a large medical marijuana cultivation farm in Cochise County.

The planning commission has voted 5-3 in favor of allowing a company to use portion of the Willcox greenhouse to cultivate medical marijuana that would be sold all over the country.

It may be a farming community but many residents are learning about this plan to cultivate medical marijuana here. Home to apple orchards and pecan farms, could Willcox now to be home to one of the largest marijuana farms in the state?

"I've never heard about this," said resident John Saenz. "This is the first time I'm hearing of it."

The planning commission has green lighted a request by a company called Westedge LLC to purchase the Willcox greenhouse.

It is an almost eight-acre greenhouse superstructure built in the 1990s. Right now it grows mostly tomatoes and other vegetables.

If Westedge LLC acquires this property, the plan is to use 85,000 square feet of the building to grow medical marijuana that would be sold all over the country.

That is more than a football field worth of plants.  County officials say the company could choose to grow even more in the future.

Many Willcox residents said they were not too happy with the idea of having a medical marijuana farm in their backyard.

"I think it's ridiculous," said Willcox resident Jim Hansen. "It should not be done here. Anything we can do to stop it, we will do."

"That is not the American way," Joyce Richmond said. "Anything they want to do they will do, and then we have to fight."

Westedge LLC did not return our calls tonight for comment.

Cochise County officials say if no one appeals this decision within a week, it will go through. Otherwise it will be up to the county board of supervisors to make a decision.

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