Since 2015, the state of Hawaii has been working to establish a full-fledged medical cannabis program. The regulatory process has taken quite some time to develop, and local lawmakers have taken the responsibility of cultivating a more medicinally driven identity to replace the usual stigma surrounding marijuana. And now, it finally seems as if the state is on the brink of allowing dispensaries to open up their doors to patients.
On Wednesday, the Hawaii State Department of Health approved a license to allow Maui Grown Therapies to produce cannabis-derivative products in its production center. This would make the company the first medical marijuana dispensary to operate in the state.
Maui Grown Therapies has gained approval for three different mandatory regulations, moving it one step closer to being able to serve patients starting this summer. Additionally, the dispensary was also licensed for a second cultivation center earlier this month, and has passed an inspection for its first retail location.
The authorization will enable Maui Grown Therapies to start formulating its own line of cannabis-derived concentrates, lotions, tinctures, oils, and capsules. To add to the good news, this Hawaiian dispensary also seems determined to cultivate cannabis while promoting environmental friendliness and making the patient's health their top priorities.
The dispensary will use subcritical and supercritical CO2 for its botanical oil extraction system, allowing for cleaner extracts of plant oils. Additionally, both of the company’s production centers are powered by solar energy and use a recyclable irrigation system to water their cannabis plants.
Still, there’s one more hurdle for Maui Grown Therapies to jump in order to become the state’s first cannabis dispensary. The Department of Health has yet to provide certification for the dispensaries’ testing lab. Hawaii’s regulatory system requires all cannabis products to be tested before they can be sold.
Currently, Maui Grown Therapies is hosting open house events, (with more to follow in the summer) and is seeking over 25 employees to help get the dispensary up and running. If they’re able to acquire the final lab testing certification, the company will be well on its way to becoming the first, and perhaps most popular, medical dispensary in all of The Aloha State.