The Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board has so far received nearly 1,000 applications from businesses seeking a new cannabis retail license.
The official tally is 962 applications, according to the Olympian. And that’s only for storefronts that want to sell either medical or recreational cannabis (or both), and it doesn’t include companies that want to get into growing or manufacturing infused products.
Simultaneously, at least 118 recreational cannabis stores that already have licenses applied for MMJ legal status to serve patients as well as rec customers.
It’s not clear yet just how many new rec shops the cannabis board will license.
The new process is part of the state’s move to integrate its hundreds of medical cannabis businesses into the regulatory system for recreational marijuana companies. The Olympian reported that the cannabis board will decide how many new shops to license after receiving a report on market demand.
But all existing MMJ businesses must obtain a state license by July or close down under the new law. That means many are stuck in a wait-and-see mode.
At a public hearing last week, a number of stakeholders called for a new round of licensing as well for medical growers and product manufacturers, instead of only retailers.