New Jersey medical cannabis companies are developing delivery plans in order to better serve their customers who can’t easily get to dispensaries themselves as the state gears up for the next phase in medical legalization.
Home delivery legalization in New Jersey dates back to before the COVID-19 pandemic made progressive changes to cannabis business necessary. Jake Honig’s law, passed last summer after requests by medical marijuana patients in the state, expanded access to cannabis patients, raised purchase limits, and legalized delivery so that sick patients wouldn’t have to wait in line when they need medicine.
Currently, of the nine medical cannabis companies in the state that are active and in business, four are planning to begin delivering cannabis. Those four companies are waiting to hear back from the Department of Health on whether or not their plans are approved. Many of the companies hoping to develop a legal cannabis business are excited about the range of how far they can deliver and the prospects of the new venture.
“We are, as a group, allowed to deliver anywhere in the state that you have a registered patient,” said Devra Karlebach, CEO of GTI cannabis company. “A lot of it will depend on the demand as well.”
However, some dispensaries are opting not to try and get approved at this time, claiming the program may not really be worth it due to all the current setbacks.
“We do not have immediate plans to implement delivery as we are still assessing the viability of such a program,” said James Froehlich, chief of staff for Breakwater Treatment & Wellness. “Our current focus is on continuing to cultivate enough medicine to meet the needs of the growing patient population in New Jersey and hope to have announcements soon regarding satellite locations which will provide greater patient access.”
Some Factors To Consider
While many are excited about the perks of medical cannabis delivery, there are definitely complications to iron out with the new process. Currently, New Jersey relies mostly on cash-only transactions, which may prove to be a dangerous prospect for delivery drivers. Also, the health department is requiring anyone delivering cannabis to have a GPS tracking system on their vehicles, which may be a turnoff for some who were hoping to get jobs as delivery drivers.
There also aren’t really enough dispensaries to meet the needs of all the patients in the state, and that is going to be an issue when it comes to delivery as well. There are almost 80,000 patients in the state, so there may be too much demand for drivers to keep up with.
Still, while this may be a less-than-perfect system, especially at first, cannabis patients are now able to access the medicine they need without venturing outside the house or waiting in long lines. This could pave the way for a brighter future for cannabis in New Jersey as the industry grows, especially with the possibility of decriminalization on the horizon.