US: DEA hasn't yet acted on applications it requested three years ago

Exactly three years ago on Monday, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced that it would be accepting additional manufacturers to produce research-grade marijuana. And in that time, the agency hasn’t approved a single application.

It’s an ongoing source of frustration for researchers, lawmakers and advocates. Currently, there’s only one federally authorized source of cannabis for research—located at the University of Mississippi—and the quality of marijuana the facility produces has been repeatedly criticized for lacking the chemical diversity and potency of products available on the commercial market.

More than two dozens research institutions have submitted applications to become federal cannabis manufacturers since DEA posted its notice in the Federal Register on August 12, 2016.

“Our company applied for DEA authorization to cultivate cannabis because I wanted to explore the promise that cannabis could provide my fellow veterans with help to manage their chronic pain, depression, post-traumatic stress and other wartime wounds, but we’ve been waiting ever since,” George Hodgin, CEO of Biopharmaceutical Research Company (BRC), said in a press release.


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