Pubdate: Mon, 26 Mar 2018
Source: Times-Picayune, The (New Orleans, LA)
Copyright: 2018 The Times-Picayune
Author: Littice Bacon-Blood


A Metairie business could obtain permission Tuesday to operate one of
the state's first medical marijuana pharmacies. The Louisiana Pharmacy
Board is meeting in Baton Rouge for two days to discuss, and possibly
give final approval, to companies seeking to obtain one of the state's
operating permits.

According to the board's agenda, 44 applicants have applied for
permits, although some of those companies have withdrawn from

The Rx Greenhouse announced in February its plans to open an office
building at 3131 North Causeway Boulevard in Metairie after gaining
preliminary approval from a state subcommittee. If approved it would
open by September, the pharmacy owners have said.

The Rx Greenhouse was chosen by the subcommittee from among eight
applicants seeking to dispense marijuana in the metro New Orleans
area, known as Region 1 or the Metropolitan Region, which includes
Jefferson, Orleans and St. Bernard parishes.

The Pharmacy Board plans to issue operating permits for one pharmacy
in each of the state's nine designated health care regions and a 10th
permit will be issued as needed.

The board's application review committee interviewed the 44 applicants
in January and developed a ranking of the applicants by region. The
committee's recommendations will be presented during the meetings on
Tuesday and Wednesday.

The board could vote during the meeting or it could take the
recommendations under advisement.

The agenda for the 8 a.m. meeting includes a public comment period
prior to discussion of the applicants.

In Louisiana, legislation mandates that marijuana can't be sold in any
form that can be smoked. The forms sold at state-permitted pharmacies
will include pills, topical creams and oils and can only be dispensed
to patients with a doctor's recommendation form.

The state-permitted pharmacies will dispense marijuana that will be
produced and manufactured in various forms by vendors hired by
Southern University and Louisiana State University, the only
agricultural centers allowed by state law to grow the medicinal-grade

The schools finalized contracts with vendors in 2017. The state
Agriculture Department will oversee the production.

On Tuesday, the Pharmacy Board will consider the following businesses
that applied. (Only one from each region can be chosen, with a
possible 10th permit allowed).
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