NEW YORK - Cannabis farmers in New York waiting for the state to roll out licenses to sell weed have stocked up $750M of the drug and currently have nowhere to sell it, according to a new report.
According to a report in Bloomberg, growers have nearly 300,000 pounds of the drug waiting to be sold to customers statewide but are still waiting on the state's Office of Cannabis Management to approve retail dispensaries.
So far, no legal weed dispensaries have opened in New York, although police in New York City have been cracking down on a plethora of unlicensed, illegal ones that have opened since marijuana was legalized in New York.
"It’s an unclear path to market," Melany Dobson, chief executive officer of Hudson Cannabis told Bloomberg. "We’ve been told again and again that dispensaries will open before the end of the year. I’ve acted as though that’s our single source of proof, so we’re prepared for that."
New York's new cannabis laws say that people with prior marijuana-related offenses or their family members will be prioritized for licenses, but a recent lawsuit has blocked the rollout of licenses, arguing that the program violates the constitution.
"The goal is to open dispensaries by the end of this year," Aaron Ghitelman, a spokesperson for the OCM told Bloomberg. "We’re still gunning to get the first sales on board" by 2023.
However, farmers are concerned that, left sitting for too long, their product, which could bring as much as $1.3B in sales to New York City alone, will end up going to waste.