×

No date yet on recreational marijuana sales at NETA in Northampton

  • The exterior of New England Treatment Access, or NETA, is shown June 27, 2018 in Northampton. GAZETTE STAFF/SARAH CROSBY



@BeraDunau
Wednesday, August 01, 2018

NORTHAMPTON – On July 26, the Cannabis Control Commission approved provisional licenses for New England Treatment Access’ Northampton and Brookline locations to sell recreational marijuana. However, regulatory factors are still preventing company from beginning recreational sales in Paradise City.

NETA’s Northampton and Brookline locations already function as medical marijuana dispensaries. So far, no recreational marijuana has been sold legally in the commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Norton Arbelaez, director of governmental affairs for NETA, said that the licenses are contingent on inspections from the Commonwealth, and so far the CCC has not indicated when those inspections may take place.

Additionally the CCC will need to sign off on NETA’s plan to use some of its medical marijuana, which has been tested in compliance with medical marijuana guidelines, on the recreational side. No timeline has been given on this decision either.

The CCC did not return a message left for comment.

The lack of independent testing labs for recreational marijuana has slowed the time line for retail sales in the state. So far, the CCC has not issued any licenses for such facilities.

Arbelaez said that NETA is hoping to begin recreational sales sometime in August, but he noted, “We do not know yet.”

He also said that NETA is in constant contact with the CCC.

“We’re speaking to them basically on a daily basis,” he said.

As for how NETA will run a medical and recreational business out of the same building, Arbelaez said that marijuana for the different sides of the business will be kept separate. There will also be separate lines for medical and retail customers. Additionally, NETA recently launched an app that allows medical patients to order their prescriptions ahead of time. They can then pick them up at the facility after showing the proper documentation.

“We’ll have it ready for you,” he said.

Indeed, Arbealez said that NETA is still committed to the medical marijuana business.

“Medical patients will continue to be our priority,” he said.

As for the inventory of NETA marijuana that is being segregated for recreational use, Arbelaez said that it is being added to every day.

Bera Dunau can be reached at bdunau@gazettenet.com.