This story was republished with permission from Crain’s Detroit and written by Dustin Walsh.
An error this week by a private “seed-to-sale” tracking service vendor for Michigan‘s marijuana industry created pandemonium across the state and has the state’s marijuana agency rethinking its options.
METRC, a Florida vendor that provides tracking software that is monitored by regulators, notified the Michigan Cannabis Regulatory Agency on Monday that 85 percent of the system’s 3,178 active users in the state were more than 30 days past due on their $40 monthly service fee. METRC was going to revoke access to those users on March 1, effectively shutting down marijuana sales in the state.
However, it turns out METRC made what it told Crain’s was a “clerical error.” The actual number of METRC users in Michigan who were more than three months past due on their fees was only 11 percent, which was revealed to Crain’s by METRC and CRA on Wednesday evening.
“The fact of the matter is we had multiple datasets from METRC that were apparently inaccurate,” Brian Hanna, executive director of the CRA, told Crain’s. “For us, this is concerning. The industry works very hard each and every day to use the system correctly. The industry is going through hardships right now with the prices being so low, and they don’t need inaccurate data and poor communication from METRC.”
“The $40 monthly fee is not new,” a spokesperson for METRC said in an email Wednesday night. “This is a cost that has been in existence since the Metrc system was implemented in Michigan in 2018. Most licensees are in good standing and regularly pay the $40 fee.”
The company did not respond to additional requests for comment Thursday.