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Recreational marijuana is legal in Massachusetts, so why can’t you buy it?

Over a year and a half ago, Massachusetts voters legalized recreational marijuana but there are no open recreational dispensaries yet. Why not?

The soonest recreational dispensaries in Massachusetts can legally open is July 1st, but the chances of a recreational dispensary opening on that day in Massachusetts are slim to none.

State law says the recreational shops can open on that date so why aren’t they able to?

The Cannabis Control Commission has already begun accepting applications and could begin to grant licenses for recreational dispensaries soon. The Commission has received 18 completed retail applications so far but has not approved any applications yet.

The first cultivation license was issued last Thursday for a growing facility in Milford but without a recreational store to sell the crop, consumers won’t be able to try the product. Also, the plants will need plenty of time to grow before they will be available to purchase. As well as go through the proper testing and packaging process prior to sale.

Massachusetts marijuana

The Cannabis Control Commission has a 90 day limit to review the license applications and complete the extensive process that includes background checks and multiple inspections. It is the commission’s goal to make sure this process is done correctly from the start to make sure the process is smooth for retailers and consumers alike.

Additionally, the commission stated on Thursday that 20 more applicants have already submitted at least one of the packets required for a license. Also, more than 1,500 applications have been started for businesses focused on everything from the retail shops to cultivation to product manufacturing businesses.

It is expected that the industry will start slow but will no doubt be fully running in another six to twelve months. Below is a map of the completed licensing applications as of June 21.

ompleted licensing applications as of June 21. —Cannabis Control Commission

Credit : Cannabis Control Commission

Massachusetts already has more than 50,000 active medical marijuana patients and 31 registered medical marijuana dispensaries. These businesses had the first opportunity to submit applications but not all of them are planing to participate in the recreational marijuana market.

To view a full list of the Massachusetts Weed Shops and dispensaries visit this page.

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