Damian Marley, son of musician Bob Marley, is converting Claremont Custody Center in California into a marijuana grow facility. The former prison is 77,000 square feet, with ample room to grow marijuana for dispensaries.
The cost of purchasing the former prison was $4.1 million, according to Billboard. The purchase of the facility riddled the town of the $3.3 million debt caused by the former prison. The opening of this facility will create at least 100 new jobs and is expected to generate at least $1 million in tax revenues for Coalinga. Marley has partnered with Ocean Grown Extracts on the venture.
Marley said, “Many people sacrificed so much for the herb over the years who got locked up. If this [venture] helps people and it’s used for medical purposes and inspires people, it’s a success.”
Marley’s manager, Dan Dalton said, “Cannabis is something that’s around Damian every day with friends, family and with his Rastafarian faith. We’ve watched people who have sacrificed their lives for it. That injustice has motivated us to be advocates as well as knowing that there are healing properties in cannabis.”
Speak Life will be an exclusive strain offered only by Marley and Ocean Grown Extracts. It stems from OG Kush and has been altered by a Ph.D. chemist to create the unique hybrid version. The hybrid is 70 percent indica and 30 percent sativa.
Marley said, “The OG has always been my favorite. When they introduced this strain of OG I really loved it and its consistency.”
The grow operation is also in preparation for the passing of Proposition 64 to legalize recreational marijuana in California. If Prop 64 passes, Marley’s operation will be ready. The first crop is scheduled for harvesting in January. Oil extracts will be produced by the end of 2016.
Marley said, in regards to marijuana legalization happening within his lifetime, that, “I didn’t know it would happen this way. This was definitely something we were working towards for a long time, before I was even born. There was Peter Tosh’s ‘Legalize It’ and songs like that – this is something our culture has been working towards. I was optimistic that it would one day be legal – and now it is here.”