Maine to launch adult-use marijuana sales starting October 9, 2020
The official map of current conditional adult-use licensees and their license statuses is available at the OMP website.
The Maine Office of Marijuana Policy (OMP) announced Friday afternoon that after a nearly four-year wait since the passage of Maine’s adult-use marijuana law in November 2016, retail marijuana sales to adults 21 and older will begin on or after October 9, 2020.
The OMP will issue the first active licenses – the last of a three-stage application process beginning with conditional state approval followed by municipal approval – on September 8, 2020. While the OMP was reportedly ready to begin rollout of active licenses in April of this year, the COVID-19 pandemic led to uncertainty and delayed municipal approval of the state’s first adult-use testing facilities, which must be operational prior to any adult-use sales to ensure adult-use marijuana product safety.
The OMP states that it expects active licensees to spend the time between licensure on September 8 and the October 9 launch date “to harvest and process marijuana, ensure those products satisfy the mandatory testing requirements, and move product through the supply chain to stock retail store shelves.”
Additionally, the first adult-use marijuana retail stores will prepare to implement social distancing and other public health guidance in preparation for an anticipated strong customer response. It remains to be seen whether the turnout at Maine’s first adult-use marijuana stores will be as robust as in other states, such as Massachusetts where lines remained out the doors of the state’s first adult-use marijuana shops for well over a week after the launch date, and demand has frequently outpaced supply.
The OMP expects to issue licenses on September 8 in all four categories of adult-use establishments (i.e., marijuana stores, marijuana cultivation facilities, marijuana manufacturing facilities, and testing facilities), which should ensure the supply chain needed for the first licensees to open their doors on or around October 9 as planned.
For questions on Maine’s adult-use or medical marijuana program, feel free to contact Dubois Law.