If Ohio’s public colleges and universities don’t want to set up medical marijuana testing labs, the state has a plan to license private labs by early June.
Testing labs are a crucial piece to Ohio’s new medical marijuana program. Labs must analyze the product before it can be sold through licensed dispensaries to the public. The law requires that Ohio first license labs run by public colleges and universities but allows private labs to be licensed after June 5.
Members of the Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee heard Thursday that universities and colleges are considering applying for lab licenses but whether any of them apply won’t be known until September 11 when the application window opens. Ohio State University will not apply, said Missy Craddock of the Ohio Department of Commerce.
Justin Hunt, chief operating officer for the medical marijuana program, said he can’t name which universities have expressed interest.
CCV Research, a private entity, said it hopes to partner with a public college or university to host a lab but it did not disclose which institution is interested.
Hunt said on Thursday that it must be a public college or university that applies for a lab license, using its own resources. He cautioned that this first round of lab licensure is not a mechanism for a private company to partner with a public school to beat out other companies.
Ohio’s medical marijuana law took effect 11 months ago. Since then, regulators at the Ohio Board of Pharmacy, State Medical Board and Ohio Department of Commerce have been writing rules, accepting applications, hiring vendors and taking other steps to meet deadlines.