It’s go time for Ohio’s medical marijuana program. Ohio gave the first certificate of operation to a testing facility Thursday, which means every level — cultivation, processing, testing and dispensing — now has at least one business ready to serve the state’s medical marijuana customers.
North Coast Testing Laboratories in Streetsboro can begin testing cannabis samples. Just a few of the small growers have cannabis ready for testing, so the first product to reach consumers will be very limited.
The local company will settle into northeast Ohio, which got more than its share of grow sites as the state sought to evenly spread out licenses for medical marijuana locales.
Level I grow sites with indoor hydroponic operations covering up to 25,000 square feet will be run by AT-CPC of Ohio LLC in Akron and Terradiol Ohio LLC in Canton. Eastlake, Parma and Youngstown also are welcoming large grow operations. Level II licenses for up to 3,000 square feet of grow space were awarded to Mother Grows Best LLC in Canton, Galenas LLC and Fire Rock Ltd. in Akron (the only city with three grow sites) and FN Group Holdings LLC in Ravenna.
State approval for processing plants, where the cannabis will be manufactured into oils, edibles and other noncombustible products, were given to Greenleaf Therapeutics LLC in Middlefield (Geauga County), Ohio Medical Solutions Inc. in Akron and Standard Farms Ohio LLC in Garfield Heights.
Under the new state law, Ohio residents will be able to buy and use marijuana products to treat nearly two dozen medical conditions after obtaining a recommendation from a physician.
Ohio hopes to see its first medical marijuana sale sometime around Jan. 1.
At least 2,170 Ohioans hold active medical marijuana cards now, and doctors have written more than 3,460 recommendations for medical marijuana, according to Ohio’s Board of Pharmacy.