Recreational marijuana sales in Michigan may begin as early as Dec. 1, but don’t expect a bountiful supply at first.
The Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA) on Wednesday notified dispensaries and growers that they may use up to 50 percent of their medical cannabis inventory on recreational sales beginning Dec. 1. To do so, the dispensaries must have a recreational license and only sell marijuana that either has been on the shelf for at least 30 days or comes from a grower or processor who’s also licensed to handle recreational cannabis.
On Nov. 1, the agency began accepting applications for recreational cannabis businesses, including dispensaries, growers, and processors.
So far, more than 46 businesses have pre-qualified for a recreational license.
The state is expected to begin approving licenses later this month.
Recreational marijuana wasn’t expected to be available until spring because it takes three to four months to grow, dry, trim, and cure marijuana. But under the law, MRA Executive Director Andrew Brisbo has the option of allowing licensed businesses to use some of their medical marijuana for recreational sales.
Brisbo decided to exercise that option after determining it wouldn’t hurt the supply for medical marijuana cardholders.
But the supply may be slow at first, Brisbo told the Detroit Free Press. “I can’t imagine that we’ll have more than a dozen or so” retailers licensed by Dec. 1, he said. “As we’ve seen in the medical market, it’s a slow build out as inventory and production of plants and products increases. We want to provide an environment where businesses can supply the market as quickly as possible.”
Under the recreational law, approved by voters in November 2018, residents 21 and over will be able to legally buy marijuana.
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