Washington Stores And Growers Contemplate Costs Of Medical Marijuana integration

By Sue Vorenberg

Cannabis Daily Record

Jim Mullen, COO of The Herbery, a small upscale chain of retail cannabis shops in Vancouver, Washington, scrunched his forehead as he contemplated the costs of adding services for medical marijuana patients to his line of store offerings.

(Cedar Creek Cannabis already sells one medical-grade product at The Herbery, even though the state the medical and recreational systems have yet to merge)

It’s not that he doesn’t want to serve medical patients – he does, and will through at least one of his stores. But he added that there’s more to the equation than just opening up a new register or adding a few items to the shelves.

“It’ll cost us at least a few thousand dollars to get everyone trained, with more costs as we get everything set up,” Mullen said. “And we don’t know how many medical marijuana patients we’ll serve after doing that. But in the end you have to think, are we doing this for the community even if it costs us more as a business? We are at The Herbery, but I think we may only start off at one store until we see how it works out.”

Some patients may not bother signing up at shops because of backlash against the state registry, in which the state will keep a running list of patient names, Mullen said. And that makes estimating the number of patients that will use the system difficult.