Jamaica plans to maintain ‘functional’ cannabis market amid pandemic

Jamaica published details about the “Business Continuity Plan” it has implemented to maintain a functional and expanding cannabis industry amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Part of the plan involves the Cannabis Licensing Authority (CLA) using “remote” means to monitor harvests and other medical cannabis operations.

“This is to allow for the continuity of activities on licensed sites, which is necessary for the sustainable development of the industry, whilst ensuring compliance during the COVID-19 pandemic,” the CLA noted in a news release.

The CLA also unveiled interim guidelines allowing herb houses to sell medical and therapeutic cannabis online.

The regulatory body worked with the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries to formulate the guidelines as a public health measure amid the coronavirus pandemic.

CLA Director of Enforcement Faith Graham said the regulatory body is “cognizant of the far-reaching effects of the pandemic and remains vigilant and proactive in taking steps to secure the industry.”

The agency stressed that it continues to “make appropriate adjustments, where necessary, to allow for the preservation of the integrity and continuity of Jamaica’s medical cannabis industry.”

Other aspects of the plan outlined by the CLA include:

  • A restricted visitor policy, where only certain people may enter the CLA’s office.
  • Online meetings to facilitate the application processes.
  • Implementation of a lobby dropbox for the receipt of documents.

The CLA requests that appointments be made before visiting its offices.

The agency’s chief executive officer, Lincoln Allen, said he is committed to protecting the local cannabis industry during the pandemic.

“The authority remains functional and committed to meeting the needs of the industry,” he said.

For more of Marijuana Business Daily’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic and its effects on the cannabis industry, click here.