The medical marijuana industry in Florida will have exponential growth in the coming year as Amendment 2 is implemented on January 3rd of 2017, at which point medical marijuana will be available to a much wider array of patients with any of the conditions specified in the amendment, or anything considered just as debilitating. It took two years for the state to get things in order for patients to start receiving a very limited number of high-CBD and full strength medical marijuana products – but that at least created something to build off of when voters chose to legalize full strength medical cannabis for more conditions.
“The voters have spoken. It is our duty as their elected representatives to implement this amendment appropriately,” committee Chairwoman Dana Young, R-Tampa, said at the onset of the two-hour meeting.
As a part of moving things forward and ensuring there is medicine for the number of patients who are going to become qualified in the coming months, the Department of Health has licensed an additional nursery to cultivate, process and distribute medical marijuana. This will be the seventh facility that was awarded a license, where originally there were only to be five licenses, one for each of the five regions in the state.
The newest license belongs to McCrory’s Sunny Hill Nursery from the Central Florida region who missed getting one of the original licenses (by less than a percentage point) to Knox Nursery. The nursery had also been in the process of legal appeals after the original licenses were awarded – but the Department of Health decided to award them the license, settling the issue after admitting that it was likely that Sunny Hill should’ve won the license from the very beginning.
“We’ve got about 35,000 square feet under lights right now ready to grow,” said CEO Don Clifford. “Obviously we don’t have plants or anything because we haven’t gotten cultivation authorization. But as soon as we have that, we’ll put plants in place and begin growing.”
It didn’t take very long for the other facilities to get things rolling, at least a couple of them have seen more than one harvest already and have products on the shelves – and soon Sunny Hill will be right there with them. It won’t take long before they are up and running, providing medical marijuana products to patients who have been waiting quite a long time for legal relief.