Oklahoma sees high prices for medical pot amid scarce supply

BY ASSOCIATED PRESS
11/16/2018 09:00 AM
Main Cherokee Phoenix
A limited supply of medical marijuana flower in Oklahoma means some patients are paying premium prices and businesses are running out of products. COURTESY
TULSA (AP) – A limited supply of medical marijuana flower in Oklahoma means some patients are paying premium prices and businesses are running out of products.

Healthy Buds Dispensary in Tulsa sells out of marijuana buds faster than owner Michael Monroe can restock from his Oklahoma City grower, The Tulsa World reported.

Monroe said he’s seen customers from as far away as Miami, Oklahoma, about 90 miles northeast of Tulsa, since he began publicizing that he would be selling buds.

“Honestly, it’s the older customers coming in,” said Monroe, who had to close his shop for a few hours this week after running out of supplies. “I would say 80 percent of them are older than 50.”

Oklahoma voters in June approved use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. The law allows licensed medical marijuana patients to possess up to 8 ounces of marijuana, six mature plants and six seedlings, along with edibles and concentrated forms of the drug. The state began accepting applications for licenses from patients, growers, dispensaries and caregivers in August. But many licensed medical marijuana businesses in the state won’t be selling buds before December, when widespread harvests are expected to be complete.

Monroe said that the few growers ready for production have begun raising prices.

“At first (my grower) was really cool about it all, but it’s been price gouging ever since,” he said. “When he raised the price (to $4,000) the last time, I barely had enough to pay for the pound I have now.”

Danna Malone, an owner of Ye Olde Apothecary Shoppe in Tulsa, said she turned down an offer to buy a pound of marijuana from a grower because she wasn’t certain of its quality or legality. Her store is selling seeds and clones, which are copies made from cuttings of parent plants.

“We’re just erring on the side of caution,” Malone said. “We’ve got way too much invested in this. If we had medical marijuana, we would be selling it. But we don’t want to sell anything that’s not tested.”

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