Business

Ontario-based Aphria Inc. is Bringing More Green Spaces to Toronto

Green spaces make us happier and healthier — so why don’t we have more plants?

This summer, Leamington, Ontario-based cannabis company Aphria Inc. launched an initiative to make Toronto greener. Why? The company conducted a survey in 2019 that found 94 percent of Canadians know that plants and green spaces have the ability to improve their overall well-being and yet, 35 percent do not feel they have enough access to plants.

The gulf between these numbers is astounding. While Toronto Parks and Recreation’s motto is “the city in a park,” and the city has been ranked as one of the greenest in the world depending on where one is  situated, the access to greenery can be spare. Aphria Inc.’s study also found that there were some barriers that leaves green beings (and all the oxygen they could create) at the door. 51 percent of respondents said the constant care keeps them from making the commitment to a plant baby, while for others, problem areas include no sunlight (44 percent) and a lack of available space (44 percent) in cramped apartments.

Plant Positivity, Aphria Inc.’s latest social impact campaign aims to target these individuals with better plant education and access. And, the company is putting their green thumb to work immediately by introducing new green spaces, including 6 new gardens with national non-profit Evergreen Brick Works. These gardens will add more than 50 varieties of native plant species to the existing 8,000-square-metres of gardens across the site in Toronto, which opened in 2010 as a global showcase for sustainability and urban innovation.

“Finding ways to give back and fostering stronger, healthier communities everywhere Aphria operates is the core of who we are,” said Irwin D. Simon, Interim CEO, Aphria Inc. “Countless studies have shown that increased exposure to plants and green spaces contributes to overall well-being. Through our Plant Positivity Gardens at the Brick Works, we hope to make a meaningful impact on people’s lives.”

The initiative is a part of the company’s wider Corporate Social Responsibility strategy, which is committed to give back to both people and the planet.

“The new Plant Positivity Gardens contributes to our thriving community and educational space, further establishing Evergreen Brick Works as a place where people can gather and experience sustainable practices that make cities flourish,” said CEO and Founder of Evergreen, Geoff Cape, said in a statement.

Aphria Inc. will also launch a similar garden in Leamington with a local partner. Now open to the public, the new gardens are designed to be a sensory experience that asks people to think more deeply about the impact that plants have on their well-being and that of the planet.