More Delays for Uruguay’s Marijuana Industry

The first country to legalize marijuana on a national scale is dragging its heels, and the country’s new president announced this week that he isn’t ready to sign off on commercial sales just yet.

Uruguay legalized recreational marijuana in December 2013, and started creating an infrastructure for the sale of cannabis to residents via pharmacies.

But a series of stumbling blocks have delayed the program, even though 15 cannabis clubs and roughly 2,000 cultivation operations are already established, according to Vice News.

On Wednesday, newly inaugurated President Tabare Vazquez revealed that his administration will postpone the start of cannabis sales.


“Because the companies do not deliver documents on time, and in the manner that has been requested,” according to Milton Romani, Vazquez’s chief drug regulator. Furthermore, point of sale software is still in the production phase for pharmacies to sell cannabis, Romani said.

“If we make a mistake by rushing, we fail,” Romani said.

There’s no word yet on when the administration may give pharmacies the green light to begin selling cannabis.