GTI Archives - Green Market Report

Debra BorchardtSeptember 26, 2022
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4min3190

Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTC: GTBIF) was accused of sex and age discrimination by a former employee that worked in a Rise dispensary in Pennsylvania. Carrie Baker filed the complaint on September 22, 2022, alleging that she was “forced out” for not fitting with the corporate culture, which was described to her as young, single men. Baker is in her mid-fifties and says she was passed over for a shift supervisor role given to a substantially younger male co-worker.

The issue dates back to 2018 when Baker filed a complaint against GTI with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC) alleging both age- and sex-based discrimination in connection with a promotion that had been unfairly awarded to a less qualified, substantially younger male co-worker.

According to the complaint, Baker filed a complaint with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and once GTI found out, Baker, who says she had never received a disciplinary write-up in her life, began to receive unfair, unfounded, and disproportionate disciplinary actions. She complains that GTI harassed her so much after she filed her complaint with PHRC that she ended up quitting in June 2019. She says she was replaced by a younger employee. Baker went on to file a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on or about February 11, 2020.

EEOC Closes Investigation

The complaint states that on or about June 27, 2022, the EEOC closed its investigation into both the PHRC Complaint and EEOC Charge—expressly noting that it was not making a determination as to the claims raised by Baker—and issued Baker her Notice of Suit Rights.

Culture Clash

Baker said she had originally applied for an Assistant Manager job but was hired as a Patient Care Specialist, which paid less. She also accuses GTI of making diversity hires in order to get licenses in the state, but then pushed out some of those hires. Specifically naming Nzinga Morris (BIPOC); Kenita Honesty (BIPOC); Kathleen Newcomer (age 60+); and Marica McCarroll (age 50+) in her complaint.

She claims that store manager Tel White told her, “GTI was only looking to hire people like him, who were able to “pick up and leave” on a moment’s notice, if necessary.” She went on to complain that she performed the role of assistant store manager without the title and despite being turned down for the job. She also stated that a new role of Shift Supervisor was created and her younger male co-worker got that job. Baker says she complained to GTI’s human resources and also tried applying for higher positions at other Rise locations. She says she received good employee reviews, but once she filed the PHRC complaint, she was classified as needing improvement.

According to the complaint, GTI complained that Baker was searching for other employment during company time and had made negative remarks about management and her pay.

Baker says she is now working at the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s medical marijuana division.

GTI has 77 open and operating retail stores in 15 states. Green Thumb employs approximately 4,000 people. The company was named to Crain’s Chicago Business Fast 50 list in 2021 and 2022 and a Best Workplace by MG Retailer magazine in 2018, 2019, and 2021. The company has been requested to comment on the complaint.


Debra BorchardtAugust 3, 2022
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4min130

Green Thumb Industries Inc. (Green Thumb) (CSE: GTII) (OTCQX: GTBIF) reported its financial results for the second quarter ending June 30, 2022. Revenue increased 4.8% sequentially and 14.6% year-over-year to $254.3 million from last year’s $221.9 million in the same time period. This easily beat the Yahoo Finance average analyst estimate for sales of $248 million. GTI said that revenue growth was primarily driven by increased retail sales in New Jersey, reflecting the legalization of adult-use cannabis; increased retail sales in Illinois; 19 additional retail locations versus the second quarter last year, and increased traffic in the Company’s 77 open and operating retail stores.

Net income in the second quarter of 2022 was $24.4 million or $0.11 per basic and $0.10 per diluted share, compared to a net income of $22.1 million, or income of $0.10 per basic and diluted share in the prior year period. This also beat the analyst estimates for earnings of $0.04.

“We are pleased with our second quarter results, especially in this challenging economic environment. Five percent revenue growth and greater than 300 basis point improvement in Adjusted EBITDA margins over the previous quarter demonstrate the results of our focus. We continue to maintain a strong balance sheet, which gives us ample flexibility to support our growth initiatives,” said Green Thumb Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler.

Retail breakdown

GTI said its second-quarter revenue included sales from 77 retail stores in the following states: California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Virginia. Retail revenue increased 11.7% quarter-over-quarter. The only weak spot for GTI was that same-store sales were down 1.5% on a base of 56 stores. Sequential quarter-over-quarter comparable sales were up 9.9% on a base of 73 stores.

The company opened one new retail store in Minnesota, RISE Mankato. Profits from the first day of sales were donated to Habitat for Humanity of Minnesota (Habitat Minnesota).

“Despite the macro and consumer headwinds, our team continued to execute and build momentum. The complexity in U.S. cannabis makes us work harder and smarter every day to create long-term value for all our stakeholders. We are confident in our strategy, we believe in our brands, and we are committed to promoting well-being through the power of cannabis for the American people,” concluded Kovler.


Debra BorchardtJuly 28, 2022
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6min60

Get ready for some cannabis companies to report boosted earnings as revenues got juiced from New Jersey adult-use sales. Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Pablo Zuanic thinks that the addition of this market could drive growth in second-quarter sales for several companies in a report he issued on Thursday. While there hasn’t been any official data from New Jersey on the number of sales, which began April 21, Zuanic thinks it could be as high as $60 million in the second quarter. 

The first month was reported to be $24 million and since that time the store count has grown from 12 to 17. The SKUs at the stores have jumped from  283 to 1,322 as more products get added. Looking at the landscape the companies poised to benefit the most are TerrAscend (OTC: TRSSF) with three dispensaries in NJ selling recreational cannabis as does Ayr Wellness (OTC: AYRWF). Next with two stores under their belts are Verano (OTC: VRNOF), Acreage Holdings (OTC: ACRHF), Columbia Care (OTC: CCHWF), Curaleaf (CURLF), and  Green Thumb Industries (OTC: GTBIF). Ascend Wellness (OTC: AAWH) taps in at one store, but its Montclair dispensary was been approved to start rec sales, however, Montclair won’t allow recreational sales. 

Apothocarium stores are owned by TerrAscend

Brick & Mortar Wins

In order to make his sales estimates, the analyst calculated the number of days during the second quarter that these companies could open their stores for business. Then he looked at the hours the stores were open and the market share that the operators had. He reviewed the online menus to determine SKU counts for the stores and further drilled down to in-store brands.

“If we define market share based on opening hours (prorated for when stores began rec sales), in 2Q22 Green Thumb and Verano would have had 19% share, TerrAscend 18%, Acreage 15%, Curaleaf 11% (its second rec store opened 5/24), Ascend Wellness 8%, Columbia Care 6% (extended rec opening hours from early June), and AYR 5% (its stores opened for rec on 6/14),” wrote the analyst. “If we define it based on SKU count, Green Thumb would have had 24%, Verano 23%, Ascend 17%, TerrAscend 11%, Curaleaf 9%, Columbia Care 3%, and AYR 2%.”

However, the geography and cannabis market in the state splits into three zones – North, Central, and South.  He wrote in his report, “There are more stores in the northeastern part of NJ while the Curaleaf store in Bellmawr initially had minimal competition and benefited from incoming Philly traffic. We should also factor in location (next to a high-traffic road/ highway) and parking availability. Although this report is not a 2Q preview, we would estimate that Green Thumb and Verano had ~18% share in 2Q; Curaleaf, Acreage, and Ascend 15%; TerrAscend (parking is an issue) 10%; and Columbia Care and AYR the rest (9% combined).”

The analyst then got out his calculator and wrote, “On the base of 1Q22 reported sales (all else equal; again, we are not forecasting total 2Q sales here), this would mean +4.4% for Green Thumb (18% x $60Mn, on a 1Q22 sales base of $242.6Mn); Verano +5.3% ($10.8Mn/$202.2Mn); Acreage +15.8% ($9Mn/$56.9Mn); Curaleaf +2.9% ($9Mn/$313.4Mn); Ascend +10.6% ($9Mn/ $85.1Mn); TerrAscend +12.1% ($6Mn on $49.7Mn); AYR +2.4% ($2.7Mn/$111.2Mn), Columbia Care +2.2% ($2.7Mn/$123.1Mn).”

Brand Power

The analyst went a little further and found that the top five brands in the adult use market accounted for 80% of the total SKUs available. Verano was the winner here with 376 SKUs or 28% of the market share. It was followed by Curaleaf with 321 SKUs and a 24% share, then TerrAscend’s Kind Tree brand came in at 215 SKUs and 16% share. Green Thumb’s Rhythm brand had 6%, and Ascend Wellness’s Ozone brand had 5%.

Vapes had the most SKU’s with Verano leading the pack, while flower came in second  and Curaleaf led that category. Curaleaf led the day for pre-rolls, while Verano mopped up with the edible category. 

In Closing

Most cannabis companies have been complaining about how challenging the cannabis industry has become. Mature markets are flattening out in sales and costs are going up, while prices come down. Consumers are being hit with inflation pressures and there are recession worries on the horizon. The addition of a new market and one that is looking to be a strong one is great news for these companies. Welcome to the Garden State.


Debra BorchardtJuly 5, 2022
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5min80

Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Pablo Zuanic issued a report this morning in which he sees some value in the beaten-up cannabis group, although he also cautioned that numerous roadblocks remain. He was clear that the group may not have even found a bottom yet as prices continue to slide along with the broader market. Zuanic also noted that even the second quarter might not bring relief on valuations, but he is a selective buyer at these levels. Having said that he said investors may not see any meaningful upside for another two to three years and that it would probably only occur when some sort of federal reform occurs.

Current Valuation

Zuanic wrote, “The MSOS ETF fell 25% in the last month vs. a 7% drop for the S&P500, and over the last three months it is down 49% vs. -15% for the SPX Index (yoy -75% vs. -12%). Even on risk-on days, when the larger Canadian LPs move up, MSOs either drop or stay flat. The MSO stock performance masks encouraging medium and long-term sales trends, with more states legalizing since 4/1 (NM, NJ), or soon to start rec sales (RI, CT/NY), or soon to vote to legalize (MD, MO); also, states like IL could see growth accelerate as more stores open, as we have recently seen in MI (+22% seq sales trends based on Apri/May data).”

If investors were hoping for some relief in the second quarter, then Zuanic dashed those hopes. He said that the second quarter boost will most likely only apply to those companies in New Jersey. Adult-use sales begin in the state on April 21 and sales have reportedly been very good. Plus, investors have been increasingly focused on profit margins and cash flows, which dampens buying. The companies with good cash flow are also beset with high taxes and debt levels are high.

“In this context, where it is difficult to call the bottom (as technicals and poor liquidity exacerbate stock swings and concerns about the lack of reform at the federal level and about state level fundamentals), we would tread carefully and are buyers only selectively of a few MSOs. We think the current state of affairs will lead to further consolidation (Columbia Care was at 0.9x debt to sales as 3/31/22, and we think that contributed to the decision to sell at the bottom) and benefit those in a stronger position,” wrote Zuanic.  He says he is focused on quality and his top picks (in alphabetical order) remain: Cresco (CRLBF. OW) proforma (1.7x C23 EV/Sales), Curaleaf (CURLF, OW) (2.7x), Green Thumb (GTBIF, OW) (1.6x), and Trulieve (TCNNF, OW) (1.9x).

Sales Trends

The analyst took a temperature read on sales in the second quarter based on data from Headset. He cautioned that it wasn’t official hard data, but did gather that second-quarter sales overall had improved from the first quarter. Most companies had reported that first-quarter sales dropped from the fourth quarter, so this improvement is welcome. However, early indications seem to say that sales dropped versus 2021 for the same time period. He believes these sales figures are competing with last year’s stimulus checks that consumers got during the pandemic.

Cannabis prices seem to be falling as much as the stock prices. The analyst cited Cannabis Benchmarks and pointed out that wholesale prices nationwide (in the 18 states it tracks) averaged $1,057/lb for the week ending 7/1, down 16% from 4/1/22 and down 20% YTD (-35% you). “Regarding key MSO states that we track: AZ -9% seq and -45% YTD; CA -4% and -20%; CO -9% and -17%; CT -10% and -9%; IL +1% and -12%; MA -7% and -37%; MI +4% and -43%; NV -5% and -14%. We realize lower wholesale prices sometimes may be neutral for companies just focused on retail, but most of the MSOs that we track have cultivation and tend to be vertically integrated,” he wrote.

 

 


Debra BorchardtJune 7, 2022
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9min80

With just 12 dispensaries open in the state, New Jersey still managed to ring up $24 million in sales in the first month. That’s roughly $5 million a week. According to the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission, “On the first day of adult-use sales in New Jersey, 12 participating dispensaries sold cannabis and cannabis products to 12,438 recreational cannabis customers for a total gross sale of nearly $1.9 million.” BDSA expects New Jersey to be the third-largest contributor to overall US sales growth by 2026 and is forecast to generate annual revenue of $2.3 billion in total legal cannabis sales.

“We expected sales to be substantial and the data shows that the market is effectively serving both adult-use consumers and patients,” said Jeff Brown, executive director of the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission. “We continue to monitor inventory and access for patients and are prepared to take enforcement action against any ATC that does not meet the requirements for patient access and supply.” The CRC has approved 102 conditional licenses to date.

Columbia Care

This is sparking the existing operators to keep ramping up as licenses expand. Columbia Care Inc. (NEO: CCHW) (CSE: CCHW) (OTCQX: CCHWF)  said it has started operations in its new, approximately 270,000-square-foot cultivation and production facility in New Jersey. Col-Care has also begun using post-harvest automation equipment and expanded its adult-use shopping hours at both of its Cannabist locations in Deptford and Vineland to the maximum number of hours allotted by the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission (CRC). The company said it received approval from the New Jersey CRC to do so on May 25, 2022, along with the approval to begin using post-harvest automation equipment. Col-Care said the introduction of this equipment will reduce the “harvest to shelf” time for products, making it easier to meet the rapidly-growing patient and customer demand.

“After ten years of navigating the ever-evolving cannabis industry in various markets, we have so many lessons learned and have been able to bring those to bear in how we approach New Jersey, knowing how it will serve as a model for those east coast states transitioning to adult use in the near term. We are proud of how we managed to scale alongside the demand in the last month and are thrilled to be able to serve more patients, customers, and wholesale partners with our newest cultivation facility and equipment,” said Nicholas Vita, CEO, of Columbia Care. “As always, we owe a debt of gratitude to the CRC as well as local officials and our communities for their support in our efforts to make New Jersey one of the strongest cannabis markets in the world and a beacon for the industry.”
In addition to the new 270,000-square-foot cultivation, manufacturing, and processing facility, Col-Care also operates a 50,000-square-foot facility, located in Vineland. The company has a third retail location in development in New Jersey, which is expected to open later in 2022.

Green Thumb Industries

Green Thumb Industries (OTC: GTBIF) CFO Anthony Georgiadis said on the company’s recent earnings conference call, “New Jersey adult sales kicked off on 4/21 and early results look yearly similar to Illinois circa, January 2020. We just completed a wholesale facility expansion in Paterson. We have a new facility that’s about to break ground. So, long-term, we’re confident in our prospects of being a big player within the wholesale side of the New Jersey market.” The company did acknowledge the lack of products on the adult-use side of the store versus the medical side, but that is due to the state regulators’ preference to remain focused on the medical patients. CEO Ben Kovlar said on the same call, “There’s a lot of demand for this product. If there wasn’t, there would not be people lined up around the corner at these stores in New Jersey. So that’s what gives us a lot of conviction. There ends up being a lot of upside.”

Curaleaf

Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. (OTCQX: CURLF) is another New Jersey company enjoying its expansion efforts. Curaleaf began new adult-use sales at its Edgewater Park on May 25. It’s the company’s second location to sell adult-use cannabis in the Garden State and the 13th adult-use store to be added in the state. “After a successful adult-use launch in April, we are thrilled to expand our adult-use footprint allowing us to serve even more New Jersey consumers,” said Matt Darin, CEO of Curaleaf. “I’d like to thank the Town of Edgewater Park for their partnership and for so graciously welcoming us into the community. Curaleaf is committed to ensuring patients and consumers receive quality products and service as they embark on their cannabis journey.”

Ayr Wellness

Last month, medical operator Ayr Wellness (OTC: AYRWF) got its green light to begin adult-use sales. “We are thrilled to be approved for adult-use sales in New Jersey and to have all three dispensaries cleared simultaneously to open for adult-use,” said Jonathan Sandelman, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Ayr. “To date, Central Jersey has the lowest number of dispensaries per capita, leaving its population under-served compared with the rest of the state. New Jersey is expected to become a highly influential state for the U.S. cannabis industry, and we are honored to help shape the market landscape from its early stages.”  The company is working on opening its first adult-use store.

Debra BorchardtMay 5, 2022
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4min80

After the market closed on Wednesday, Green Thumb Industries Inc. (CSE: GTII) (OTCQX: GTBIF) reported its financial results for the first quarter ending March 31, 2022, with revenue rising 25% year-over-year to $243 million. This was flat compared Green Thumb’s fourth quarter of 2021, but it beat the Yahoo Finance average estimate for earnings of $236 million.

GTI also reported that its net income for the first quarter was $28.9 million or $0.12 per basic and diluted share, compared to a net income of $10.4 million, or $0.05 per basic and diluted share in the prior year. This beat the Yahoo Finance average analyst estimate for earnings of $0.06.

“Our team delivered solid first-quarter results with revenue increasing 25% over the prior-year quarter. We generated our seventh consecutive quarter of positive net income of $29 million, or $0.12 per share, and Adjusted Operating EBITDA of $67 million. For the ninth consecutive quarter, we delivered positive cash flow from operations, which was $55 million in the first quarter,” said Green Thumb Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. “We continue to have strong conviction in our core thesis and given the opportunity ahead, we will invest in markets where we know demand is coming. As I have said before, growth is not linear and there will be quarter-to-quarter fluctuations depending on when new markets open to adult-use sales as well as the timing of our infrastructure investments. Our preparations in New Jersey positioned us well for demand on Day One, and we feel confident in our playbook for future adult-use transitions.”

Same-Store Sales Fall

GTI said that retail revenue decreased by less than 1% quarter-over-quarter. Comparable sales growth (stores opened at least 12 months) were down 3% on a base of 51 stores. Sequential quarter-over-quarter comparable sales were down 6% on a base of 65 stores.

Still, the company continues to invest for the future even as it faces pricing pressures and rising costs.

New Markets

In March, Green Thumb began sales of flower products in Minnesota. After the quarter ended, New Jersey’s Cannabis Regulatory Commission approved seven medical marijuana operators, including Green Thumb, to begin selling adult-use cannabis on April 21; RISE Bloomfield and RISE Paterson were among the first stores to begin adult-use sales on Day One.

“We believe that all our markets will eventually open to adult-use sales—we don’t know exactly when—but we do know that Americans are choosing cannabis for well-being and our trusted family of brands are well-positioned for the future. There is tremendous opportunity in this Great American Growth story, and we believe that the approximately $25 billion legal U.S. cannabis market will have significant growth over the next decade,” concluded Kovler.
Benchmark analyst Mike Hickey said in a Thursday research note that the company’s drop in Ebitda “largely reflected inflation on raw material input and additional compensation for talent throughout the organization. The decrease also reflected pricing headwinds in Pennsylvania, Nevada and Massachusetts. We are cautious on inflationary impacts over the consumer and operating expenses, which could sustain over the medium term.”

Video StaffApril 21, 2022

1min80

Green Thumb Industries (OTC: GTBIF) began selling adult-use cannabis for the first time at its Rise dispensaries in New Jersey. April 21 was the first day that the state of New Jersey cannabis companies could legally sell recreational marijuana. The company was able to start sales at the Bloomfield and Patterson New Jersey stores. Customers showed up at 6 am on the dot to be able to buy legal recreational marijuana for the first time in their state. With a steel drum player in the parking lot and free donuts, the mood was festive. Even the police seemed to enjoy the party atmosphere.


Debra BorchardtMarch 1, 2022
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4min50

Green Thumb Industries Inc.  (CSE: GTII) (OTCQX: GTBIF) reported its financial results for the fourth quarter and full-year ended December 31, 2021. GTI delivered total revenue for the fourth quarter of 2021 was $243.6 million, up 37.4% from $177.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2020. Net income for the fourth quarter of 2021 was $22.8 million or $0.10 per basic and diluted share, compared to net income of $22.4 million, or $0.11 per share in the prior year. this also beat the Yahoo Finance average analyst estimates for earnings of $0.08.

For the full year 2021, total revenue was $893.6 million, up 60.5% from the prior year. GTI said that revenue growth was primarily driven by increased scale in its consumer packaged goods and retail businesses, especially in Illinois and Pennsylvania. Key year-over-year performance drivers were the expanded distribution of Green Thumb’s branded products, 10 new store openings, 12 acquired stores, and increased traffic in the Company’s 73 open and operating retail stores. Net income for the full year 2021 was $75.4 million or $0.34 per basic share and $0.33 per diluted share. Green Thumb’s family of consumer brands—RYTHM, Dogwalkers, Incredibles, Beboe, Doctor Solomon’s, and Good Green—were produced, distributed, and available in retail locations across the country.

“Green Thumb’s strong fourth-quarter results reflect our company’s continued deliberate execution. Our team delivered our sixth consecutive quarter of positive GAAP net income, eighth consecutive quarter of positive cash flow from operations and Adjusted Operating EBITDA of $76 million. On a full-year basis, revenue grew 61% to $894 million, GAAP net income more than quadrupled to $75 million and Adjusted EBITDA expanded 71% to $308 million,” said Green Thumb Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. “We continue to keep our heads down while focused on executing the business plan. I want to express our gratitude and appreciation to our team, customers, and communities who continue to support us and position us well for the future.”

GTI also noted that this was the eighth consecutive quarter of positive cash flow from operations and that the company had cash of $230.4 million at the end of the quarter. Green Thumb’s fourth quarter included revenue generated from 15 states: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Virginia.

“Everything we have accomplished in 2021 was specifically designed to build long-term value for all of our stakeholders. Cannabis is a complex business but you can rely on us to continue our Enter, Open, Scale strategy to drive value. As I’ve said before, we are still in the early innings of this great American cannabis growth story, and we feel it’s our responsibility to shape this industry, which is being born out of the failed War on Drugs. America is the land of opportunity and we believe the cannabis opportunity should be made available to all Americans, regardless of race, gender or religion. As more states legalize, we hope the industry can include new participants.”

For the full year, GTI reported that total selling, general and administrative expenses were $277.1 million or 31.0% of revenue, an increase from $198.1 million or 35.6% of revenue in the prior year. Decreased operating costs as a percentage of revenue were driven primarily by operating leverage.

 


Debra BorchardtJanuary 3, 2022
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4min110

There was no rest for the M&A department at Green Thumb Industries Inc. (GTI) (CSE: GTII) (OTCQX: GTBIF) during the holidays. The company announced last week that it closed on an acquisition of Minnesota-based LeafLine Industries. As one of only two licensed cultivators in the Minnesota medical cannabis market, LeafLine is licensed to grow, process, and dispense cannabis directly to patients.

“We are excited to enter the Minnesota medical market and broaden access to cannabis products for Minnesota patients,” said Green Thumb Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. “We look forward to caring for LeafLine’s existing patients while ensuring a seamless transition. And looking ahead, we are ready to begin providing patients access to high-quality flower and edible products, both of which have been recently approved. As we kick off 2022, Green Thumb is thrilled to welcome over 100 new team members, a new state and five new retail locations.”

While Minnesota began medical cannabis sales in 2015, the state has been slow to expand its program with only about 29,000 registered active patients according to the Minnesota Department of Health. The state has reported that over 56,000 patients have been approved to date, but many don’t seem to be active in the program. The state currently has 17 qualifying conditions, including chronic pain, multiple sclerosis, post-traumatic stress disorder and seizures. There are only 1,291 approved caregivers. Products available include vape, tinctures and topicals, with flower and edibles coming later in 2022.

According to the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library, “Minnesota has not legalized recreational marijuana, despite legislative proposals to do so. Several bills were introduced in the 2019-2020 session that would legalize or otherwise modify laws around cannabis possession and use in Minnesota, including a proposal to establish a cannabis task force to more closely investigate issues surrounding legalization (see HF717). While the issue generated much discussion, none of the bills to legalize recreational marijuana passed in the 2019-2020 session. Discussion continued in the 2021-2022 session, as bills were again introduced to legalize recreational marijuana (e.g. HF600).”

GTI said in a statement that the acquisition of LeafLine includes a cultivation facility and five open and operating retail locations in Eagan, Hibbing, St. Cloud, St. Paul and Willmar. Green Thumb said it will also maintain the opportunity to open up to three additional retail locations in the state.


Debra BorchardtOctober 5, 2021
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4min40

New York’s Cannabis Control Board is moving quickly to make up for the lost time under the previous administration. In the group’s first meeting since incoming Gov. Hochul stepped in and nominated people for the board, they approved raw cannabis flower as a medical product effective immediately.

Boris Jordan, the founder and chairman of Curaleaf (OTC: CURLF) said on Twitter:

Thank you, NY Gov. Hochul & the Office of Cannabis Management for allowing the sale of whole flower. This decision impacts 151k+ medical patients in NY who will now have access to quality & safe whole flower. Action (not talk) from our new Gov!

In addition to approving flower, the Board also loosened other restrictions.

  • Doctors can approve medical patients
  • 30 day supply increases to 60 day supply
  • $50 registration fee for patients is waived
  • Streamlining dispensation

Currently, New York cannabis law states that adults 21 and older can possess up to three ounces of cannabis or 24 grams of concentrates in New York. The irony is that regular citizens could legally smoke cannabis flower in public, while medical patients weren’t allowed such a form factor.

The meeting was a quick one and lasted roughly 30 minutes. The board members are Tremaine Wright (Cannabis Control Board Chair) , Jessica Garcia, Rueben McDaniel III, Jen Metzger, Adam Perry and Chris Alexander (Executive Director). The meeting also named Jason Starr as the Chief Equity Officer. He served as assistant counsel to former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) and also worked at the New York Civil Liberties Union.

Patrik Jonsson, Regional President of the Northeast at Curaleaf said, “The expansion of New York’s medical program allowing the sale of whole flower is a very big deal for the thousands of patients affected who now have access to the most cost effective and natural form of the plant. On behalf of Curaleaf and our patient community, I want to thank legislators and the Office of Cannabis Management for their leadership on this issue. This continued evolution of the medical program, which includes expanded qualifying conditions and the removal of application fees, will empower more patients to make choices that work best for their needs. These changes will give New Yorkers access to whole flower that has undergone standardized procedures and testing protocols, ensuring quality and safety. Curaleaf looks forward to expanding our product offerings to best serve our valued patients.” Curaleaf said it could have products on the shelf in November after state testing.

Stocks See Lift

Several of the cannabis companies with large exposure to New York saw stock prices immediately jump on the news. Curaleaf Stock rose as did Green Thumb Industries (GTBIF).


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