Washington State Begins Issuing MMJ Endorsements

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As part of Washington State’s ongoing effort to roll medical cannabis into the same regulatory system that oversees recreational marijuana businesses, officials have begun issuing endorsements to retailers that meet its medical threshold.

So far, the Liquor and Cannabis Board has handed out 142 medical endorsements, while roughly 1,100 dispensaries have also applied for new state rec licenses, according to the Olympian.

Dispensaries must obtain state permits by July 1 if they want to remain in business. The medical endorsement on top of the rec license will allow stores to sell to MMJ patients as well as rec customers.

It’s not clear, however, how many of those 142 are longtime MMJ dispensaries and how many are rec shops that want to also be able to serve medical customers.

But of those 142, there are 33 dispensaries that made top priority because they’ve been around for at least a few years, have paid taxes, not run afoul of regulators, and applied for rec licenses in 2013. And of those 33, a whopping 18 are in King County, which includes Seattle.

The cannabis board is waiting on a consultant report, due Dec. 15, before it decides how many new retail licenses to issue.