First licensed medical marijuana dispensary begins sales in South Dakota

Welcome to the club, South Dakota.

The first state-licensed medical marijuana dispensary, Unity Rd., opened Wednesday in Hartford, near Sioux Falls, though most cultivators won’t have product ready for sale until this fall.

According to South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Unity Rd. worked out a deal with cultivator Dakota Natural Solutions Grow for both companies to invest in infrastructure and start building before they received their licenses.

The companies’ planning allowed them to hit the ground running.

“The moment that they got the license, they were able to drop seeds,” Unity Rd. co-owner B.J. Olson told South Dakota Public Broadcasting.

“The moment that we got our license and our building open, we were able to open up to our customers.”

So far, Unity Rd. is selling only flower and pre-rolls but plans to offer infused products in the coming weeks, the media outlet reported.

The milestone opening comes 20 months after voters said yes to medical cannabis sales in November 2020.

At the time, voters also approved recreational marijuana sales, but that was overturned in court.

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The state has licensed 69 dispensaries, 29 cultivators, 11 processors and two marijuana testing labs.

Another South Dakota dispensary, Native Nations Cannabis, has sold medical marijuana in Flandreau since July 2021, doing business as a sovereign Native American tribe not subject to the state’s rules.