Minnesota has chosen the two companies that will grow, process and distribute medical cannabis under the state’s new limited MMJ program.
LeafLine Labs and Minnesota Medical Solutions were selected to cultivate medical marijuana, process it into pill or liquid form and distribute the medicine via a total of eight dispensaries. The Minnesota Department of Health made the announcement Monday morning.
The companies, among 12 that applied, were selected after a review of applicants’ track records in cultivation, manufacturing and patient services. The state also assessed their financial stability, business plans and other aspects of their applications.
LeafLine’s team includes physicians, members of a family that owns several garden stores in the state, and executive from Connecticut-based Theraplant, which cultivates cannabis in Connecticut. The ranks of Minnesota Medical Solutions include doctors, scientists, greenhouse operators and building contractors.
Leafline’s manufacturing facility will be in Cottage Grove, and the company plans to open a distribution center in Eagan on July 1. Dispensaries in Hibbing, St. Cloud and St. Paul are expected to be open by mid-2016. Minnesota Medical Solutions will open distribution facilities next year in Rochester, Maple Grove, Minneapolis and Moorhead.
Lawmakers had worried that too few companies would apply for grow licenses, but a dozen paid the $20,000 non-refundable fee.