Montague grow facility to investigate odor mitigation system’s effectiveness

Flower Power Growers at 180 Industrial Blvd in the Turners Falls industrial park.

Flower Power Growers at 180 Industrial Blvd in the Turners Falls industrial park. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

Flower Power Growers at 180 Industrial Blvd in the Turners Falls industrial park.

Flower Power Growers at 180 Industrial Blvd in the Turners Falls industrial park. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ


Staff Writer

Published: 07-10-2024 4:16 PM

MONTAGUE — Representatives from Flower Power Growers LLC attended Monday’s Selectboard meeting to continue discussions on how to respond to odor complaints stemming from the marijuana grow facility and their plans to investigate the effectiveness of the existing odor mitigation system.

Flower Power Growers CEO Ezra Hagerty opened the discussion by saying a “communication response plan” to odor complaints was drafted and sent to Montague Public Health Director Ryan Paxton. This plan is still in the drafting stage. Hagerty explained there is also a technical review being done on the 180 Industrial Blvd. facility’s odor mitigation system.

“We’re evaluating if there’s any additional upgrades to the system that we can make,” Hagerty said.

One of the odor mitigation system flaws that was noted came from the 48 carbon filters that struggle to work in humid conditions.

“We’ve invested in additional dehumidification capacity for each one of those bays to hopefully make the carbon more effective over time,” Hagerty said.

Flower Power Growers also sent some of the carbon filters away to an independent testing facility to gauge their effectiveness.

Paxton added that he toured with facility with Hagerty and discovered the smell inside the building is less significant than it is outside. At times, he noticed the smell farther down the road in the industrial park.

Paxton mentioned the Ja’Duke Center for the Performing Arts reported noticing a marijuana smell on June 28 just before 11 a.m. and again on July 1 at around the same time. Both odor complaints were brought to Hagerty and Paxton to understand the conditions at the time that led the scent being detected.

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Another report from Ja’Duke came on the morning of July 8. Paxton noted the marijuana smell wasn’t detected closest to Ja’Duke when he visited that morning, but he could smell it in other areas of the industrial park.

Nicholas Waynelovich, who co-owns Ja’Duke, appealed again to the Selectboard for more action to be taken to curb the smell coming from the cultivation plant. He argued that Flower Power Growers agreed to abide by Montague’s zoning bylaws when the company came to town. Those bylaws detail odor mitigation for nuisance smells.

Specifically, the bylaw, in Section 8.10 that handles special regulations for marijuana establishments, states: “No odor may be noxious or cause a nuisance, or impair public comfort and convenience. Marijuana establishments shall incorporate odor control technology and provisions.”

Waynelovich added that the students at Ja’Duke Preschool have stayed indoors during times when the smell has been too strong. He asked for clarification on when action would be taken to enforce the zoning bylaw pertaining to odor. Selectboard Vice Chair Matthew Lord clarified that the zoning bylaw relates to nuisance odors, not just any odors. A nuisance declaration would come from the Board of Health, he added.

“If the Board of Health finds that there is a nuisance, then either the Planning Board or the Selectboard may enforce the agreement areas,” Lord said. At this time, the Board of Health has not declared the smell as a nuisance.

The consensus between the Selectboard, Flower Power Growers and the Board of Health is to continue monitoring for smell, and to continue drafting the communication response plan to future odor complaints.

Erin-Leigh Hoffman can be reached at or 413-930-4231.