MMJ Startup Strikes Deals With Maryland University, Hospital

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A medical marijuana cultivation startup is partnering with a university and a hospital in Maryland with the hope that it will win one of the 15 grower licenses under the state’s medical cannabis program.

Wellness Farms announced this week that it inked an agreement with the University of Maryland Eastern Shore to create a program for medical marijuana research, and also plans to work with McCready Health, which runs the only hospital in rural Somerset County, according to Delmarvanow. That’s where the grow center hopes to open, and the new partnerships could give the company a leg up.

But with 146 grower applications, competition will be stiff. Winners will be announced this summer.

Wellness CEO Jason Walsh told Delmarvanow in October that the company has $7 million in funding, legal control of its hoped-for location, and zoning has been approved.

Walsh said that the company is completely owned by Maryland residents, but a 2015 SEC filing lists his address and two of the company officials as being in Frankfort, Illinois. The fourth official listed has an address in Boulder, Colorado, according to the filing.

Topics the university program would cover include developing new agricultural approaches, which would be useful for growers, and also appropriate dosage levels and how the body absorbs cannabis, which could be useful for companies that produce infused products. The hospital partnership is intended to help patients overcomes barriers to healthcare.