As a result, several businesses told Marijuana Business Daily that they will have to push back their transition to the recreational cannabis market by several weeks.
Retail marijuana sales are scheduled to begin in Colorado on Jan. 1. But only a few businesses will actually be able to sell recreational cannabis on that date because they are still working on compliance issues – many of them related to inventory tracking.
The system, called Marijuana Inventory Tracking Solutions (MITS), is supposed to be in place at all Colorado dispensaries by Dec. 31. Recreational marijuana shops also have to use the system.
It requires medical marijuana business owners to purchase and then position radio-frequency identification tags onto plants and packaging. During a compliance check, officials can easily track a plant through the MITS tags with electronic scanners.
But business owners complain that the system – designed by Florida-based Franwell Inc. – is incompatible with the software that many dispensaries already use to track their inventory, according to the Denver Post. The non-reusable tags, they say, create extra expense, time-sucking data entry and waste, and can only be purchased from the contractor. The tag for plants costs 45 cents; the tag for packages costs 25 cents.
Ryan Cook, general manager for The Clinic, told the Post that he may need to hire an extra employee just to oversee the tagging and data entry associated with the system.
The MED has countered by saying it repeatedly told business owners not to assume that their own inventory tracking system would replace the MITS system. The MED agreed to make at least 10 tweaks to the system based on requests from the industry. And in the future, the MED will consider outside vendors for the tags.
Some MMJ businesses said Franwell indicated that its system will be compatible with other inventory tracking systems soon.
The state Department of Revenue will held a press conference at 10:30 am today to demonstrate the system and take questions from MMJ businesses. A video of the press conference will be available at www.colorado.gov/revenue/med later in the day.