The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food announced on July 19 that it awarded eight of 10 cultivation licenses to participate in the state’s Medical Cannabis Cultivation Program. Eight were selected for now as regulators adjust to the supply and demand of medical cannabis in the state.
“I want to personally thank all the businesses and individuals who participated in this process,” said Kerry W. Gibson, commissioner of the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food. “Our committee spent hundreds of hours reviewing 81 applications to make sure they selected the top producers who will deliver a high-quality, safe product for Utahns.”
Over 80 applicants vied for one of the state’s 10 coveted cultivator licenses. Half of the cultivators that were awarded licenses are owned by out-of-state entities. Harvest Health & Recreation, for instance, is based out of Arizona. State regulators recently dropped a residency requirement, which opened the doors to companies in other states. While the businesses are owned outside of the state, all cultivation will take place in Utah. The eight cultivators who were selected are the following:
Harvest of Utah
Standard Wellness Utah
True North of Utah
Tryke Companies Utah
Applicants were required to set aside $250,000 for potential issues. Under Utah law, indoor growers would be limited to 100,000 square feet of growing space, while outdoor farms could be as large as four acres. Cultivators can plant anywhere from 1,500 to 3,000 plants per acre, depending upon the spacing used.
Only eight licenses were awarded so far to help avoid an oversupply issue, such as the current dilemma being seen in Oregon. “The decision to only award eight licenses was made to avoid an oversupply of product, while still maintaining a healthy diversity of cultivators for purposes of competition of product quality and patient pricing,” Andrew Rigby, director of the state’s medical cannabis and industrial hemp programs, stated in a news release. The final approval of the licenses is pending on the completion of the background checks and compliance with other law and rules.