Dispensaries in Massachusetts are now allowed to sell more than double the amount of medical marijuana to patients than they could before, and move that could help boost industry revenues significantly.
State health officials raised the amount of medicine that medical marijuana patients can buy from 4.23 ounces every two months previously to 10 ounces over the same time period now. Health officials changed the rules after state regulators determined that testing labs are now capable of ensuring product safety, according to the Boston Globe.
Previous purchasing limits were based on concerns that patients could consume dangerous amounts of heavy metals and other contaminants if they ingested more cannabis than recommended. But those concerns were based on overly cautious assumptions on the amount of contaminants that could be found in cannabis products – as well as misunderstandings about how much patients would consume.
The state recently acknowledged these misfires.
“(I)nitial requirements are set cautiously, designed to overestimate exposure to ensure that vulnerable populations are protected,” according to a Feb. 12 statement from the state’s MMJ program. The new protocols are based on standards set by the United States Pharmacopeia Convention and analyses of regulations in other states.
There are currently five dispensaries operating in the state, but a sixth, Patriot Care Corp., is scheduled to open Tuesday in the city of Lowell in northeastern Massachusetts.