Massachusetts to fast-track MMJ firms for rec marijuana licenses

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Registered medical marijuana businesses in Massachusetts will be expedited through the review process for recreational cannabis licenses in an effort by legislators to sidestep a potential supply shortfall.

Lawmakers believe MMJ businesses could play a crucial role in the supply chain when recreational cannabis goes into effect in July 2018, the Boston Herald reported.

When the adult-use licensing process opens next April, Sen. Patricia Jehlen expects the bulk of the state’s registered MMJ businesses to apply, the newspaper reported. She and other legislators believe giving those MMJ companies first crack at rec licenses will help Massachusetts avoid supply issues like those that have occurred in Nevada.

Part of the reason for lawmakers’ concern about a cannabis shortfall is that new adult-use license holders’ crops won’t be ready for five to six months after the businesses are licensed, according to the Herald. Medical cannabis growers will have crop ready to go the day they receive their licenses.

More than 100 medical cannabis dispensaries are being built around the state with 12 currently conducting business, the newspaper reported.

“Any of those can apply to cultivate, manufacture or sell in the adult-use market,” Jehlen told the Herald. “And those can all be operational before July 1 next year.”