The United States government has for decades run a marijuana farm at the University of Mississippi, but now it seems that the contract to run the farm is up for grabs.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) “could choose to move the farm elsewhere” after the contract with the university expires on Sunday, according to the International Business Times.
Until now, the university’s contract has been renewed like clockwork every half decade, and the Times grants that it could very easily happen again. But on the other hand, there are now cultivators in numerous states who are in a position to give the university a run for its money.
“The university’s bid could face competition from commercial growers who have set up shop in Colorado and Washington or from researchers at other institutions where interest in studying marijuana’s effects has exploded,” the Times reports.
For example, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst tried to obtain legal rights to cultivate marijuana in 2007 for the government, but was shot down. In 2015, roughly 20 groups reportedly expressed interest in bidding for rights to the farm, though NIDA would not confirm that number.
NIDA is in the market for cultivation facilities that are at least 12 acres of fields along with a 1,000-square-foot indoor grow, complete with a storage vault and security cameras.