The industry is limited due to the rules of the medical cannabis program in New Jersey. New Jersey does not allow home cultivation, which really hinders ancillary businesses from starting that you find in most other medical cannabis states.
One would think that the medical cannabis dispensaries in New Jersey would do well considering they are the only legal way to purchase medical cannabis. However, the opportunities to start a medical cannabis dispensary in New Jersey are almost non-existent since there is a strict limit on the number of safe access points allowed there. And even if you are lucky enough to have a license to operate a medical cannabis dispensary, succeeding is hard due to the small customer base. New Jersey’s qualifying conditions to become a patient are some of the worst in the country.
All of this creates a harsh industry to start a medical cannabis business in, and is resulting in at least one dispensary in New Jersey scrambling to find customers. Per NBC Philadelphia:
“When the nonprofit applied for one of six dispensary licenses offered three years ago by the state Department of Health, Compassionate Care projected it would have 5,000 patients upon opening and 10,000 in its second year. “Our cultivation facility has the capability of servicing up to 20,000 patients at two ounces per month,” its bid said. But so far, only 2,200 patients statewide have registered to buy cannabis.”
In order for New Jersey’s medical cannabis industry to succeed, and for all patients to get the relief they need, there needs to be some major changes. New Jersey needs to allow home cultivation. New Jersey also needs to expand the list of qualifying conditions to become a patient. There also needs to be more outlets to purchase medical cannabis from. Or even better – legalize cannabis altogether and allow the industry to flourish. Other states need to look to New Jersey for a prime example of what not to do when they design their programs.