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New Jersey announced a plan to issue up to 108 additional medical marijuana licenses, an exponential increase that would significantly reduce business opportunities in the once highly restricted program. To date, the state has issued only 12 vertically integrated licenses, and six aren’t yet in operation. The state's health department will offer up to 54 separate dispensary licenses, 30 processing permits and 24 cultivation licenses, including three tiers of grower permits.

Applications will be available July 1.

New Jersey Legislature offered an alternative after legalizing recreational cannabis stalled and in the process flooded the medical market with more players and reducing the probability of making a profit. With less than 50,000 approved users, the state will crowd the field with more providers. We estimated that each approved users will have 457 individuals and over $35 million in assets to support one, lowly users. Meanwhile, state officials said the number of licenses it plans to issue is based on the department’s assessment of the market. That's a joke. The current outlets are more than adequate to support a few thin market. New Jersey Health Commissioner Shereef Elnahal said in a statement that “by allowing for three sizes of cultivation endorsements (5,000 square feet, 20,000 square feet and 30,000 square feet), we are increasing opportunities for small- and medium-sized businesses to participate in the program.” In addition, the state is specifying the geographic makeup of the licenses; (1) 38 in the northern region, (2) 38 in central New Jersey, and (3) 32 in the southern part of the state.

July 16th pre-application webinar is planned, with submissions due Aug. 15.

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