Rhode Island Green Lights Recreational Sales for Five Dispensaries

Sales can begin at the five locations on Dec. 1.

Recreational cannabis sales will kick off next month in Rhode Island for at least five existing medical dispensaries, Gov. Dan McKee announced today.

In a press release, McKee said he and the state Department of Business Regulation have granted “hybrid retail licenses” to the following five dispensaries:

  • Aura of Rhode Island (Central Falls)
  • Thomas C. Slater Center (Providence)
  • Mother Earth Wellness (Pawtucket)
  • Greenleaf Compassionate Care Center (Portsmouth)
  • RISE Warwick (Warwick)

Those shops will be allowed to commence adult-use cannabis sales on Dec. 1, McKee said.

“This milestone is the result of a carefully executed process to ensure that our state’s entry into this emerging market was done in a safe, controlled, and equitable manner,” McKee said. “It is also a win for our statewide economy and our strong, locally based cannabis supply chain, which consists of nearly 70 licensed cultivators, processors, and manufacturers in addition to our licensed compassion centers.”

The medical marijuana sector in Rhode Island, meanwhile, has been adjusting to new testing standards that were adopted this year, which prohibit certain pesticides and other contaminants, such as heavy metals and mold.

According to WPRI, nine companies thus far have had to destroy or quarantine batches of cannabis products due to failed test results for pesticide contamination, though none of the product in question was ever sold to patients.

Pesticide testing only began in June, which has led some cannabis executives to request that authorities revisit testing thresholds. Some argue that the bar for failure is set too low to be reasonable.

The same testing standards will also apply to recreational marijuana, and the same medical cannabis supply chain will be stocking the adult use market.

John Schroyer

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