Early this week, officials from the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) announced that medical marijuana products could soon be available in licensed dispensaries as soon as next week. This news brings a sigh of relief to patients who have waited through endless delays since 2015 when voters approved a measure to legalize medical cannabis.
Mike Strain, the LDAF Commissioner, revealed that his department had received the first batch of medical marijuana products that were ready for distribution to the licensed medical cannabis dispensaries within the state. Those samples would be tested to ascertain their potency, homogeneity and presence of contaminants.
If those samples pass the lab tests, then the department would give the manufacturers the green light to distribute their products to the places where patients with recommendations can access them.
GB Sciences, a company that was subcontracted by Louisiana State University, has provided the samples to be tested by the state. Strain revealed that the testing process would take approximately seven days and the products would be available if no issues are found during the tests. If any problem is found, the availability of the products would be delayed until those issues were resolved.
Some of the products that were randomly selected from the stores of GB Sciences for the purpose of testing by the regulator include inhalers and cannabis oil drops. The products were made in different formulations of THC and CBD. For example, some products are high in CBD while others are high in THC and low in CBD.
These products will be available to patients with debilitating conditions as long as those patients have been certified by the state to use medical marijuana as a form of treatment.
Louisiana passed strict rules under which the medical cannabis program would be implemented. For example, only two cultivation and manufacturing licenses were issued. Louisiana State University and Southern University were the recipients of those licenses. However, these two institutions could subcontract partners to help them execute their activities, and that is why GB Sciences had a chance to process the products which are undergoing testing.
Southern University partnered with Advanced Biometrics and they are soon planting their maiden medical cannabis crop. They expect the products from this crop to be ready for the market in about five months since it takes that long to grow and process a cannabis crop.
Marijuana industry watchers believe that industry actors like VPR Brands LP (OTC: VPRB) and VIVO Cannabis Inc. (TSX.V: VIVO) (OTCQX: VVCIF) will be pleased that the long wait is showing signs of coming to an end and Louisiana patients will soon benefit from medical marijuana.
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