Last Friday, December 1st, Maryland finally opened six of its medical cannabis dispensaries, four years after medical marijuana was legalized in the state. But by the end of the day, these dispensaries were already running out of product, leaving many of the state's thousands of registered patients without medicine. Although the state has awarded 14 licenses to cultivators, only one grower, Curio Wellness, has opened so far. The canna-business is now able to provide flower to the state's dispensaries, but it hasn't been able to meet all of the Old Line State's demand for cannabis.
Over the weekend, many of the dispensaries posted announcements on social media alerting customers to temporary closures. "Due to overwhelming demand we have sold out of product and will be CLOSED on Sunday, December 3 and Monday December 4. We expect to receive new strains and supply around mid to end of this coming week," Rockville dispensary Potomac Holistics posted, according to The Baltimore Sun. Kannavis, a dispensary in Ijamsville, wrote that they only had "a limited supply of Dixie tablets and Elixirs available. We will be formulating a new menu and prices as soon as we get our next shipment of product, which we expect to be within the week."
Dr. Sajal Roy, CEO and owner of the Allegany Medical Marijuana Dispensary in western Maryland, told Marijuana Business Daily that he's suffered supply shortages, too. Roy said he had ordered 8 pounds of flower, but only received 2.75 pounds, which was all sold by Saturday.
Not only did dispensaries struggle with limited quantities of product, many of them suffered computer or software glitches that caused further delays. The Allegany Medical Marijuana Dispensary had to close on Monday due to computer issues with their labeling and POS software.
Most of these dispensaries said that they currently only have a handful of edibles available, but expect to be restocked later this week. Mark Van Tyne, manager of the Allegany Medical Marijuana Dispensary, told The Baltimore Sun that "people have been pre-registered for months, and we took pre-orders… The demand is very high."
Christopher Garrett, spokesperson for the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission, said that these startup delays were to be expected for a new industry. "For the next few months, dispensaries will be building their inventories with medical cannabis products," he said.