Why are the prices so high for medical marijuana in Ohio?
There are a few reasons.
Moments after CY+ Dispensary sold some of the first legal medical marijuana in Ohio, the crowd of patients waiting outside for their turn to make state history wanted to know one thing: How much?
They weren’t happy with the answer: $50 cash for a small plastic container holding 2.83 grams of dried marijuana bud, or just under $500 an ounce.
“I’ll buy one today to say I did it, but I can get it a lot cheaper than that elsewhere,” said one man who declined to be named.
How cheap? Michigan dispensaries charge between $150 and $300 an ounce, depending on the variety, or strain. Patients say that’s similar to prices for illicit marijuana in Ohio.
Dispensaries sold 8.7 pounds of marijuana on Ohio’s first day at an average price of$538 per ounce, according to sales figures released Thursday.
Regulated and tested
Medical marijuana markets have a hard time competing with product sold on the black market for several reasons.
Ohio law requires every medical marijuana product to be tested by an independent state-licensed lab. There are only two in operation. The labs test for pesticides, mold and other contaminants. They also test for amounts of various marijuana compounds including THC, which generates a high, and cannabidiol, or CBD, which doesn’t.
Ohio’s program allows individuals with one of 21 medical conditions to buy and use marijuana if recommended to them by a physician. Eligible conditions include AIDS, cancer and others where consumers’ immune systems could suffer from tainted marijuana.
The four dispensaries that opened Wednesday sold only dried marijuana flower, or bud, from a handful of medical marijuana cultivators.
“If I wanted to open today, I had to buy it from them,” said Mike Petrella, who owns Ohio Valley Natural Relief dispensary in Wintersville.
Dispensaries are private businesses…Read More Here