Pa. awards $10.4M contract to track medical marijuana – Philly.com
MJ Freeway, a Denver-based software company that suffered a major hack in January, was awarded a $10.4 million contract Thursday to track all of Pennsylvania’s medical cannabis commerce from “seed-to-sale.”
The contract is “an important step forward in ensuring that we can get medical marijuana to patients who desperately need it,” Karen Murphy, the secretary of health, said in a statement announcing the award. “This contract serves two important functions for the program: tracking medical marijuana from seed-to-sale; and creating a registry for patients, caregivers, and practitioners to participate in the program.”
Gov. Wolf signed the state’s medical marijuana program into law on April 17, 2016. Cannabis has been approved to treat 17 medical conditions including cancer, chronic pain, HIV/AIDS, epilepsy, autism, ALS, and PTSD.
There initially were five bidders but three were disqualified for not meeting basic requirements, according to state documents.
MJ Freeway scored lower on technical merits than its Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based rival, BioTrackTHC, which earned a perfect score. MJ Freeway, however, undercut the competition on price, according to a state scoring document.
In January, MJ Freeway was the target of a hack that caused the cannabis businesses to lose data and disrupted medical marijuana commerce at dispensaries.
“The attack was not an accident,” MJ Freeway CEO Amy Poinsett said in an interview Thursday. Though there were business interruptions, “no data was decrypted or extracted from the system” and patient information remained secure, she said.
An unrelated glitch two months earlier disrupted business for many of the 1,000 customers the company serves, according to Marijuana Business Daily.
The state Health Department was assured that any security issues at the company had been “resolved,” a spokeswoman said.
“MJ Freeway submitted the strongest proposal and was selected on those