Georgia is poised to become the next state in the union to legally allow marijuana to be used as a treatment for a handful of ailments, but there’s a big question mark: how patients will obtain their cannabis.
It’s a similar situation to the one playing out in other “CBD-only” states such as Utah.
Georgia’s law will allow patients with cancer, seizure disorders, sickle cell anemia, Crohn’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, mitochondrial disease, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease to use a marijuana-derived tincture with less than 5% THC for treatment.
CBD must be the primary chemical component in tinctures used in Georgia. Patients can possess up to 20 liquid ounces of medicine at a time “under strict supervision of the state and their doctors”, according to the Associated Press. No smokable MMJ is permitted.
The legal structure leaves both businesses and patients in the lurch, since there won’t be any dispensary or cultivation opportunities for entrepreneurs. Patients will arguably be forced to break federal law by obtaining cannabis oils legally in another state and transporting it home, across state lines, according to the Macon Telegraph.
Prospective marijuana businesses in Florida could be the biggest long-run beneficiaries of the Georgia statue. That state sits just to the south of Georgia, and is generally expected to legalize medical cannabis either this year via the legislature or next year at the ballot box.
The Georgia measure, House Bill 1, was approved by both chambers of the Georgia Legislature and heads now to Gov. Nathan Deal, who is expected to sign it into law, according to the Atlanta Business Journal.