Pa. medical marijuana industry launches today – Philly.com
Pennsylvania health officials chose two growing facilities slated to grow medical marijuana for southeastern Pennsylvania.
Franklin Labs LLC and Prime Wellness of Pennsylvania were announced as winners for the Philadelphia region.
Franklin Labs is aligned with Garden State Dispensary of New Jersey. There was no readily available information on Prime Wellness. Though it had previously promised to release the names, the state did not issue the identities of the company principals.
Public records and the company’s website indicate that John Hanger is an executive with Franklin Labs. Hanger previously served as Gov. Wolf’s policy director. He was also secretary of the state Department of Environmental Protection and, as a candidate for governor himself, ran on a pro-marijuana platform.
The firm’s chief security officer, Paul Higdon used to work for the Drug Enforcement Agency and INTERPOL, the world police agency.
The state is releasing the names of 10 more winners statewide, which will all be granted permits to cultivate medicinal cannabis. The news conference began at 1 p.m. in Harrisburg. It is being live streamed here.
Each of the winners will be required to begin growing in six months. After the seeds or clones are planted, the first crop is expected to be harvested after as little as 14 weeks. It is a weed, after all. That cannabis will be processed into oils or tinctures that will be sold at medicinal marijuana dispensaries, where doctors’ recommendations will be filled. Nothing that looks like plant material will be sold.
The state will announce the winners of 27 dispensary permits next week, according to the Department of Health.
Sales of medical cannabis products is on track to start in early 2018, according to the state Department of Health. Patients suffering from any of 17 qualifying ailments will require a doctor’s recommendation before purchasing any