NY Grants Permits To Five Medical Marijuana Companies

NY Grants Marijuana Permits To Five Medical Companies
Bottle of marijuana. (UPI/Shutterstock/Atomazul)

ALBANY, N.Y., July 31 (UPI) — A little more than one year after New York legalized medical marijuana, the health department selected five organizations to grow and sell the product throughout the state Friday.

The move is the next step in a process started July 7, 2014, when Gov. Andrew Cuomosigned into law a measure making New York the 23rd state to legalize medical marijuana.

The New York Department of Health on Friday gave five companies permission — out of 43 applicants — to manufacture the drug and dispense it in up to four counties statewide. Bloomfield Industries is permitted to grow in Queens County and dispense in Nassau, New York, Onondaga and Erie counties; Columbia Care NY can grow in Monroe County and dispense in New York, Suffolk, Clinton and Monroe counties; Empire State Health Solutions can grow in Fulton County and dispense in Broome, Albany, Westchester and Queens counties; Etain can grow in Warren County and dispense in Albany, Ulster, Westchester and Onondaga counties; and PharmaCann can grow in Orange County and dispense in Erie, Onondaga, Albany and Bronx counties.

“Today’s announcement represents a major milestone in the implementation of New York State’s medical marijuana program and keeps us on track to have the program up and running within 18 months of passage of the Compassionate Care Act. I am proud that we are on course to provide certified patients with access to medical marijuana more quickly than any other state in the nation,” said New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker.

Under the law, each of the companies may produce up to five types of marijuana products, though none of the products may be smoked. New York’s medical marijuana law stipulates users may not smoke the product, but instead must use liquids or oils for vaporization, oromucosal or sublingual administration, or oral capsules.

Each of the companies must be operating within six months.

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