Why can't growers of color get medical cannabis licenses in Florida

Since 2016, the Florida Legislature - through the Florida Department of Health - has issued more than two dozen medical cannabis licenses for farmers looking to enter the MMJ industry. However, black farmers are still waiting for their licenses to be issued as regulated by the Florida Legislature.

Having licenses is known to generate increased revenue for licensees. But it seems that in Florida there are few who count on this benefit, a situation that frustrates black farmers who would like to participate in the cannabis industry.

“The license should have been released going on five, now six years ago, where a lot of the white farmers are now $150 million to $175 million ahead of the game versus the Black farmers that have to start over at zero and are behind the ball again and the medical cannabis industry," said Raymond Warthen, co-founder and president of Orlando-based Zion Infinite Farms, which applied for a license years ago. "It’s unfortunate.”

In contrast, several cannabis growers gained considerable market share within Florida's $1.2 billion medical cannabis treatment center (MMTC) industry, which is poised to hit $2 billion in annual sales by 2025. According to the health department's Office of Medical Marijuana Use, "the top six medical a cannabis treatment centers account for nearly 90% of all sales." In addition, there are 22 licensed treatment centers.

Read the complete article at www.benzinga.com.

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