Ohio Medical Marijuana Program Overview
Ohio legalized medical marijuana when Governor John Kasich signed HB 523 into law on June 8th, 2016. The law took effect on September 8, 2016, legalizing medical marijuana access for patients suffering from qualifying medical conditions such as Alzheimer’s, ALS, Cancer, Crohn’s disease, Hepatitis C, Chronic/Severe Pain and more. Qualifying patients will obtain medical marijuana from state licensed medical marijuana retail dispensaries.
When Will Medical Marijuana be Available in Ohio?
In order to get the Ohio medical marijuana program up and running, the state must issue licenses for medical marijuana businesses. These businesses include cultivation facilities to grow the marijuana, processing facilities to manufacture the marijuana into other consumable forms, and retail dispensaries to dispense the marijuana products to registered patients.
Cultivation license winners were announced in November 2017. Applications for Dispensary and Processing licenses were submitted during the end of 2017, and license winners are anticipated to be announced during this month, March 2018.
Once dispensary license winners are announced, it will take about six months for dispensaries to become operational and ready to provide medical marijuana products to registered patients. Additionally, the state’s patient registry is to become available no later than September 2018. For more information on becoming a patient, visit Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Control Program website.
On February 22, 2018, a bill was introduced to “pause” Ohio’s medical marijuana program in order to review the Department’s procedures for grading marijuana business license applications. Ohio Auditor Dave Yost addressed this by saying, “Unfortunately, the window to 'pause' has probably closed.” It is unlikely that the hold will happen.
Ohio Medical Marijuana Program Timeline:
November 2017 – Cultivation licenses awarded; Dispensary and Processing applications due for submission
March 2018 – Dispensary and Processing licenses anticipated to be awarded
By September 8, 2018 – Patient and Caregiver registry becomes available; First dispensaries anticipated to open
Get Involved in Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Market
If you missed the deadlines to apply for a medical marijuana business license in Ohio, there are still ways you can get involved in the emerging market. Learn about investment opportunities here.
Stay Compliant in Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Market
If you’re an Ohio Cultivation Licensee, it’s important to stay compliant with your state’s law. Request an Ohio-specific version of our Marijuana Cultivation Policies & Procedures to stay up-to-date and establish compliant operations.