Utah is two months out from the required rollout of its medical cannabis industry, and last week two major cannabis companies signed on to lobby state lawmakers.
Multistate operators Harvest Health and Recreation and Columbia Care both filed paperwork on January 3 to lobby Utah officials. Harvest was awarded one of the state’s first eight cultivation licenses last July. Four cultivation licenses were reserved for existing Utah businesses while the others went to companies that had “Utah ties.”
Columbia Care is among the companies selected for one of the state’s 14 initial dispensary, or “pharmacy,” licenses. Eight locations could be open in March, while the other six will be open in July. Curaleaf and Bloom Medicinals also won licenses.
Utah lawmakers set a deadline of March 1, 2020 to launch the state’s medical cannabis industry. But the state Department of Agriculture and Food says on its website it’s working “as quickly as possible prior to the March 2020 deadline.” Voters approved medical cannabis through the passage of Proposition 2 in November 2018 after tough opposition from state and religious leaders, who have been accused of trying to thwart the will of voters.
(Catch up on Cannabis Wire’s coverage of the long, contentious road to medical cannabis in Utah.)