Behind the scenes at Apollo Beach's medical cannabis operation

FOX 13 News was given a rare look behind the scenes at a major medical marijuana growing operation in Apollo Beach Friday.

“AltMed Florida is a medical cannabis company looking to bring the standards of medical cannabis out of the shadows and into the spotlight,” said AltMed director of marketing Todd Beckwith.

Inside the 150,000-square-foot facility, plants are started, cultivated, processed, and sold -- referred to by business insiders as "seed to sale." The process takes about four months.

This is no amateur operation. There’s serious science going on here.  

“For a long time, it got a bad rep. Now we're starting to see a lot of positive benefits from cannabis,” said Chris Witowski, senior director of research and development.

Every 10 days, AltMed harvests its marijuana. Workers have to keep up with a growing demand.

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“When you see the outcomes and how important this is to people, it makes it easy to be motivated,” said Beckwith.

Next door, inside the dispensary, the finished products are up for sale. 

“If you would've told me when I was a student at Florida State that I’d be working in the medical cannabis industry in Florida years ago, I would’ve told you you’re crazy. But times are changing,” said Beckwith.