Segra Brings Micropropagation to Cultivators Worldwide, Plus Exclusive Video Interview
April 20th, 2018
Exclusive, News, Top Story
The cannabis industry is rapidly growing across North America and around the world, but many cultivators are still using antiquated growing techniques. As these cultivators look to increase production, they’re increasingly looking at strategies like micropropagation (tissue culture) as a way to efficiently scale up their operations, reduce costs, and most importantly reduce the risk of crop failures due to pathogens.
At the core of this trend is Segra International Corp., which has become a leader in cannabis micropropagation. The company plans to go public later in 2018.
CFN Media recently interviewed the company’s CEO, Todd McMurray, to discuss its strategy in the space and what sets it apart from the competition.
Why Micropropagation Matters
Many cannabis cultivators use traditional cloning methods to produce genetically-identical strains. By cutting a healthy lower branch, placing it immediately into water, and transporting the clone into soil, these clones have a much shorter growing window than plants derived from seeds. Medical and recreational cannabis users benefit from known and stable levels of cannabinoids and terpenes, which can produce predictable effects and therapeutic outcomes.
While cloning may be much more efficient than growing from a seed, it’s still labor intensive and requires a lot of physical space to maintain the mother plants. Mother plants have a finite lifespan and are more susceptible to pathogens due to their longer residence times, while any clones derived from an infected mother plant will carry those infections into production. These attributes suggest that cloning is not only unscalable, but also potentially unsafe.
Micropropagation is an alternative to cloning whereby extremely small pieces of plant tissue are taken from a carefully chosen and prepared mother plant and rapidly grown under sterile laboratory conditions to produce new plants. Cultivators can purchase these plantlets at scale from micropropagation specialists, which translates to more cultivation space, disease free starts, and less risk of infection.
Segra’s Value Proposition
Segra International specializes in micropropagation of cannabis plants for licensed producers around the world. After creating the plantlets in a micropropagation lab, the company provides Stage 3 plantlets to nurseries and cultivators that in turn plant them in their media of choice, harden them, and move them into the grow rooms or greenhouses.
This process conveys several benefits for customers:
- Greater Efficiency – Licensed producers can effectively increase their productive square footage by five to 20 percent by eliminating space that was used for mother plants and instead use it for flower production.
- Reduced Risk – Micropropagation produced plantlets are free of disease and have no detectable pathogens unlike traditional clones which can vector pathogens throughout a facility. Segra’s strain storage options mean that cultivators can store their valuable genetics off-site and reduce the risk of an catastrophic pathogen outbreak or fire destroying their valuable genetics.
- Reliability and Security – The micropropagation process is highly scalable, efficient and well known for reliability. Segra’s Quality Management System including DNA fingerprinting of outgoing orders assures cultivators that their valuable genetics will be well looked after and secure.
The company has already signed up two top tier licensed producers to its Micropropagation program including The Hydropothecary Corporation (TSX-V: THCX). This Segra program is designed specifically to enable the licensed producer to scale up its operations for Canada’s upcoming recreational market. Management anticipates that these partnerships will rapidly scale into millions of plantlets sold each year.
Micropropagation has been used for many years in traditional agriculture and is quickly catching on within the cannabis industry. While these trends provide positive momentum for the company, there are also competitors sprouting up that claim to provide similar services.
Segra has several competitive advantages over these companies:
- Experience – Segra’s management team has over 25 years of combined cannabis industry experience. COO Ryan Tiberti founded Elevation Wellness in Denver, Colorado. CMO Ian Davidson founded Davidson Organics, which contract managed the production of 20,000 kgs last year in California, more than the top 5 Canadian licensed producers produced combined. Segra’s Director of Tissue Culture, Dr. Sma Zobayed, is a world renowned tissue culture specialist with two patents, 5 books and over 50 published scientific papers covering plant tissue culture. He has perfected the industrial scale production of over 500 plant species, has designed 5 industrial scale tissue culture facilities and is one of the few TC specialists with actual cannabis experience under a federal license. Last year in his previous role Dr Zobayed managed the production of over 12 million plantlets.
- Scale – The company has extensive hands on experience with industrial-scale micropropagation, and the team in place to execute its vision. When working with licensed producers, scale is extremely important as many of these companies are looking to quickly ramp up operations as they expand globally.
- Global Distribution – The company is located in Canada where cannabis has been legalized. From Canada, tissue culture plantlets can be shipped anywhere in the world where it is federally legal.
- Quality Control – The company’s in-house cannabis molecular biology lab provides fingerprinting and pathogen detection capabilities to ensure security, consistency and safety.
Segra International Corp. represents a unique opportunity in the cannabis space given its focus on micropropagation and competitive advantages. Investors may want to take a closer look at the company as it plans to go public later this year. If you’re interested in learning more, click here to receive updates prior to the company going public.
The above article is sponsored content. Emerging Growth LLC, which owns CannabisFN.com and CFN Media, has been hired to create awareness. Please follow the link below to view our full disclosure outlining our compensation: https://www.cannabisfn.com/legal-disclaimer/
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About CFN Media
CFN Media (CannabisFN) is the leading creative agency and media network dedicated to legal cannabis. We help marijuana businesses attract investors, customers (B2B, B2C), capital, and media visibility. Private and public marijuana companies and brands in the US and Canada rely on CFN Media to grow and succeed.
CFN launched in June of 2013 to initially serve the growing universe of publicly traded marijuana companies across North America. Today, CFN Media is also the digital media choice for the emerging brands in the space.
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