Florida Farm Set to Bring Organic Medical Cannabis to the Table

Florida Farm Set to Bring Organic Medical Cannabis to the Table

For Ruskin, FL-based 3 Boys Farm, waiting has been the hardest part — literally. In May, after nearly two years of making its case to be one of the select few to grow, process, and dispense medicinal cannabis in Florida, a judge ruled the operation fit to join the fray. A few months later, and it’s now official. The Florida Department of Health (FDOH) has granted the longtime organic produce grower a license to operate as a Medical Marijuana Treatment Center (MMTC).


According to 3 Boys President Robert Tornello, they will use the same organic protocols as they do when growing its organic vegetables to produce medical grade cannabis. “This organic product is not currently available from other producers,” he stated. “We intend to set new standards for safe, pure, tested cannabis medicine in Florida.”

In addition to 3 Boys receiving it MMTC license, Plants of Ruskin, who was a party to Tornello’s lawsuit against the FDOH, also received its license.

Reports indicate several other Florida nurseries are in line to receive theirs, too. Mara Gambineri of the FDOH confirms Treadwell Nursery in Eustis, Loop’s Nursery & Greenhouses in Jacksonville, and Sun Bulb Nurseries in Arcadia are in the process now.
“These five are to fulfill one of the requirements in Senate Bill 8A,” Gambineri commented.

As of this posting, the already operating MMTCs in Florida include:

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Tom says:

Who is the owner of 3 Boys Farm???Did they meet the requirements that everyone else did? How do some companies get to bypass all the protocols(right or wrong) that the Florida Legislature put into place. Plants of Ruskin deserved a license from the outset(as did many other Florida growers) without having to sue but it seems now the rules have changed,it is back to who you know not what you know.
As a Florida grower for 35 years greenhouse and open field and a person who watched his brother in law(living with my wife and I) slowly die from ALS,I had first hand knowledge of what marijuana could do for a person dying from a disease with no cure but suicide.But I am not qualified in the eyes of the law to grow marijuana,go figure.

Cold Dainhell says:

I can tell you as a real certified organic farmer, hydroponic is not organic. No SOIL means not grown organically. USDA certified organic is a federal program so if you see a certified organic label on any medicinal marijuana you know it is a lie and illegal. Anyone can use the term organic and they do.

Brian Harris says:

Hydroponic is hardly the only way to grow cannabis. Organic, soil grown is already being done elsewhere.

Robert Tornello says:

Tom, Robert Tornello here, I am the owner of 3BF/Tornello Nurseries (with some Florida partners), we began in the nursery industry in 1978, incorporated and became registered with DPI in 1981. My background as a nurseryman and landscape contractor was devoted to Zoos and Theme park work around the world. Building rooftop landscapes in Canada, and Artia’s in Hong Kong and Jakarta. I learned a few things about Ag and international certifications along the way, including how to grow in soils organically.
When we were major suppliers for the National Zoo and other Panda exhibits, all our plants in the habitat were grow for both browse (food) and ornamental value. We are very qualified in the nursery and landscape arena. When the economy blew up, with 3 years of backlogged work that overnight cancelled, we instead of laying off 20-30 year employees, elected to grow food for human consumption. We were Primus labs food safety certified, and then became (for soil and soilless) food production USDA certified. Hydroponics was very difficult to master in organic protocols, and can’t be done commercially and profitable, if done right.
We use own propriety blends of composted soils, and amendments, and will follow this method into producing medicine. As cannabis as medicine must not contain pesticide, synthetics, and too needs 3rd party testing for verified purity. I feel like I’m preaching to the coir here.
As Cold said below, and correctly, you can’t use USDA as a certifier for a plant that has not been accepted by Ag Florida or USDA national as an insurable crop, even hemp farmers are finding out this difficulty. But there are several certifying organizations that are recognized as performing the very same program as USDA. With exceptions, USDA certifiers typically inspect and check all log and traceback records once a year according to NOP guidelines, were in cannabis, it that monthly, as each crop needs water quality testing, and all input amendments and all extracted products must be tested and properly labeled where food is generally not, and pesticide residue of any type (even OMRI approved), will fail for use as medicine.
Toms wife would have greatly benefited from cannabis, as it has help my dear friend Cathy Jordan survive ALS for over 25 years, with daily use since diagnosis. And Tom I was saddened to read of your loss, Cannabinoid medicine has helped many people mange and some survive illness that conventional medicine has failed to do.
And Brian, you are right about the Hydro methods of cannabis production, only in small very controlled grows by a very talented and attentive grower can this be done, but as we know when it goes south it goes fast. And then the inputs to save that crop are hardly organic. In fact could be toxic, as all hemps are bio-remedial and translocate into their vascular bundle all the impurities were they remain.

So, Our plan with 3Boys Farm, is simple, we want to produce safe medicine under very tight protocols, and have transparency in our production and testing, as we did for food. Growing ornamentals was the easiest part of my life, learning to be a really good farmer, was humbling.
Our medical director is one of the top neuroscientists in the country and is one of the few who has prescribed under a federal program 20 years ago cannabis, as is our Chief scientific officer, who is one of the top scientist and educators of the endocannabinoid system. (Dr. Greg Gerdeman)
It is our goal through honesty and education to help patients, and caregivers as my team has been doing their entire life.
We will earn the trust of Floridians through ability, (not by fancy pitch decks, as most of the other groups are not about the science) we are real farmers. Venture Capitalists, and Invest Bankers are now deep into this industry.
My Question back to fellow readers is; Who do you trust to deliver safe medicine, real 40 year Florida growers and medical professionals, or suits from Wall Street.
Thats what going on in this industry, and while I normally don’t personally reply to threads, you are peers, and fellow farmers and I felt deserved your questions needed to be answered.

Robert Tornello,
3 Boys Farm

[…] & Greenhouses in Jacksonville, and Sun Bulb Nurseries in Arcadia. Recently, Ruskin-based 3 Boys Farm and neighboring Plants of Ruskin got the go-ahead from the FDOH following a court ruling that […]