State OKs 2 more pot-growing facilities
The state Department of Health gave the green light Wednesday for two more production facilities to begin growing medical marijuana, despite not being able to sell the drug to consumers yet.
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The state Department of Health gave the green light Wednesday for two more production facilities to begin growing medical marijuana, despite not
being able to sell the drug to consumers yet.
Manoa Botanicals LLC got the OK to open a second production center on Oahu, and Green Aloha Ltd. received approval
for its first production
facility on Kauai.
Earlier this year, the Health Department authorized Aloha Green Holdings and Maui Grown Therapies to open second production facilities on Oahu and Maui. Pono Life Sciences also is operating a production center on Maui. All three have marijuana ready to sell.
“We’ve put considerable research, time and money into building a growing facility with the most current technology available to ensure consistent high quality products for our patients,” Brian Goldstein, chief executive officer of Manoa Botanicals, said in a news release. “Our nursery plants are ready to go, and we can’t wait to see our first harvest this summer.”
Production centers are required by law to grow pakalolo in enclosed indoor facilities; operate a computer tracking system connected to the state’s database; and report real-time inventory of marijuana seeds, plants and manufactured products. The dispensaries also must receive approval to operate from the state’s Narcotics Enforcement Division.
The dispensaries haven’t been able to begin sales because the DOH must still certify laboratories to test the potency and purity of the drugs. Three laboratories are awaiting certification: PharmLabs Hawaii, Clinical Laboratories of Hawaii and Steep Hill Labs.
Hawaii legalized medical cannabis in 2000, but patients had no legal way to obtain the drug. There are more than 16,000 patients registered with the state. Act 241, passed in 2015, allowed the state to issue eight licenses, each allowed two production centers and two dispensaries. By law, dispensaries were allowed to open as early as July 15, 2016.
DOH officials expect marijuana sales to begin later this summer.