Ohio’s medical marijuana cultivators can now request permission to expand their grow space.
Expansion requests will be granted to businesses that have complied with rules and regulations, are already using the maximum amount of space allowed by the state and demonstrate a need to expand to keep up with demand, the Ohio Department of Commerce announced Wednesday.
The expansion process comes as the state plans to more than double the number of dispensaries to sell medical marijuana and after Akron-based cultivator Fire Rock Ltd. sued the state for failing to act on its February 2020 request to expand.
“This decision comes after review of multiple program metrics, including patient program participation and the Board of Pharmacy’s impending request for new dispensary license applications,” Commerce Department spokeswoman Jennifer Jarrell said in an email. “The timing allows eligible cultivators ample opportunity to expand their cultivation capacity and production before the additional dispensaries become operational.”
Fire Rock and several other small-scale growers, capped at 3,000 square feet of grow space, had requested expansion in early 2020. Their argument: They were consistently selling out of product while the state had already expanded the number of licensees beyond the initial 24 due to appeals and lawsuits. [Read more at The Cincinnati Enquirer]