Chemistree Technology (CSE: CHM) (USOTCQB: CHMJF) said that its partner Applied Cannabis Sciences of New Jersey (ACS) is preparing an application under the new request for applications (RFA) program announced by the New Jersey Department of Health earlier this month.
The health agency is seeking up to 24 cultivation endorsements, up to 30 manufacturing endorsements, and up to 54 dispensary endorsements.
ACS could apply for all three permit types, creating a vertically-integrated model for the business.
New Jersey Loving Marijuana
New Jersey’s State Legislature also passed a medical marijuana program expansion bill that is separate from the RFA announcement. New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy is expected to sign the bill into law once the RFA is underway.
The legislation will create another new opportunity to apply for licensure in late 2019 as well, significantly expanding the base of medical cannabis operations in the state as it gears up for a voter referendum on adult use legislation in 2020.
Gov. Murphy has been outspoken in his support for recreational cannabis use in the state since his election campaign in 2016.
New Jersey is home to over nine million people currently being served by only six existing cannabis operators. Six additional participants were selected in 2018 but have not yet commenced operations. A legal, adult use (21+) industry in New Jersey would effectively open up the tri-state area to one of the largest cannabis markets in the country, with the total population of New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey totaling over 40 million people.
The rapid expansion of the medical marijuana program in New Jersey is geared toward increasing the patient count to over 200,000 people, as well as setting up the adult use industry in New Jersey.
“New Jersey has a goal to be a national – and, in fact, global – leader in medical cannabis research and development, which is why our partnerships with Rutgers Medical School, Stockton University, and RWJ Barnabas Healthcare is critical to our work. Our goal is to position New Jersey as the epicenter of this work on the east coast,” states Nico Escondido, a Chemistree’s board member and a founding member of the ACS team.
Chemistree- ACS Partnership
Chemistree partnered with ACS in April 2019 to assist the company with their qualification process as a potential applicant.
The new call for applications marks a significant acceleration by the state to their expansion timelines and ACS is well-prepared to file once the applications become available on July 1, 2019.
ACS placed in the top-20 during last summer’s RFA out of 147 applicants, where only six licenses were made available. Chemistree made an early investment into ACS, acquiring 10% of the entity, with an option for a larger stake upon licensure.
“When we entered discussions to participate with ACS, we were particularly impressed by the team of industry experts they had assembled, and their deep local knowledge of the dynamic, developing New Jersey market for medical cannabis. The fact that the state authorities have recognized the need to expand the total number of licenses and speed-up their licensing process is certain to be welcome news to a large and under-served population and a huge opportunity for ACS,” Chemistree President Karl Kottmeier states.