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Rhode Island Joins the ‘Too-Much-Weed’ States

State has 60 marijuana cultivators and less than 10 dispensaries.




The skyline of Rhode Island’s capitol, Providence. PHOTO COURTESY OF KENNETJ ZIRKEL/WIKIMEDIA

Rhode Island is the latest example of a U.S. state facing a glut of weed due to a slower than expected roll-out of recreational marijuana, according to a report by 12 News.

With over 60 marijuana cultivators currently operating in Rhode Island, only a few dispensaries are now up and running since recreational marijuana was legalized last year.

Although five medical marijuana dispensaries were permitted to sell recreational products starting in December, four of them cultivate their own cannabis, and the number of additional dispensaries has been limited.

According to the law, a total of 33 dispensaries will be allowed statewide, and new licenses will be approved by the commission. However, the commission’s nominees are currently awaiting full Senate approval, resulting in a delay in the process.

The legislation included provisions for retail sales and taxation, including the establishment of a Cannabis Control Commission to regulate the industry. However, the commission’s three members were only appointed by recently, nearly a year after legalization.

Karen Ballou, the owner of Cultivating RI, said that unless more dispensaries are allowed to open soon, cultivators will face financial difficulties.


“The progress is too slow for us to sustain our operations,” Ballou said. “Sales have been significantly affected, leading us to lay off a significant number of our staff and decrease production.”




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