Last year, legislators in Virginia approved a measure to legalize its commercial recreational cannabis market and launch it in 2024, which would make it the first of its kind in the South. At the time, Democrats were in control of the state’s government. However, once Republicans reclaimed the governor’s mansion and the House of Delegates in November, whether the state’s adult-use program would actually be launched at the stipulated time was thrown into disarray.
Despite this, marijuana multistate operators remain focused on expanding their medical cannabis facilities. For instance, representatives from Columbia Care and Jushi Holdings have revealed that their central focus is on launching six dispensaries each, as permitted under state law. Jushi Holdings, which is based in Florida, and Columbia Care, which is based in New York, have medical marijuana licenses in the state of Virginia. Both firms also plan to expand related infrastructure such as manufacturing facilities and grow rooms.
Trent Woloveck, Jushi’s chief commercial director, stated that the company was expanding its full complement of grow rooms. He also revealed the company had opened its third store last month in Alexandria. Jushi Holdings also has dispensaries operating in Sterling and Manassas and plans to launch its Fairfax store soon. Construction has also begun for the firm’s fifth store, which will be located in Arlington, with work to finalize its sixth site in Woodbridge also ongoing.
On the other hand, Columbia Care has four dispensaries located in Virginia: Short Pump, Richmond, Virginia Beach and Portsmouth. The company’s vice president of public policy, Ngiste Abebe, stated that the company was focused on launching more locations so that they could serve as many customers as possible.
The companies are focused on the state of Virginia because the legislature made significant changes to its medical cannabis program, which included streamlining applications, which would enable patients to purchase products as soon as they obtained a physician’s recommendation. This is expected to increase demand.
Prior to these changes, patients who received a doctor’s medical marijuana recommendation had to wait at least half a year to receive the paperwork required from the Board of Pharmacy in the state.
The state’s medical cannabis program also continues to grow, laying the foundation for a recreational marijuana market. Projections show that the medical cannabis market in Virginia will rake in about $25 million in sales in 2022. This figure is expected to increase to $95 million in less than four years.
While there is still uncertainty regarding whether recreational sales will be launched on schedule in Virginia, the existing law offers hope that change is coming and that the industry and its leading actors such as Prime Harvest Inc. will witness reforms taking place in different jurisdictions at an increasing rate in the years to come.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Prime Harvest Inc. are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/PRIME
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