New Jersey and New York could miss launch deadlines for adult-use cannabis

Adult-use cannabis markets are yet to transpire across New York and its competitor New Jersey, despite the fact that the bordering U.S. states both recently legalized the plant for recreational sale and use.

New Jersey officials said that a self-imposed deadline of February 22 is likely to be missed.

It’s a similar story in New York. Although “The Empire State” didn’t specify the date on which it was aiming to have a legal market up and running, officials did foresee regulations being issued in late winter or early spring.

Once the regulations are released, public commenting will be welcomed for a 60-day period. Soon after, businesses will be invited to apply for adult-use licenses.

“Everyone wants to know when there will be adult sales in New York state,” said chairman of the Cannabis Control Board, Tremaine Wright, during a recently-held community outreach meeting. 

“While we want to get the market up running as quickly as possible, it’s critical we take the time to get it right,” he added.

Cannabis market rollout delay in New Jersey is leaving consumers feeling frustrated

New Jersey voters approved adult recreational cannabis use more than one year ago. However, the state is not exactly holding up its end of the bargain.

The law stipulated that sales were slated to kick off on Feb. 22 – six months after the CRC was expected to release official rules and regulations.

Unfortunately, according to executive director of the Commission, Jeff Brown, “there’s still a lot to be done.”

“February 22 is not a concrete date to open,” said Brown. “There is no firm commitment on the timing of when recreational sales will begin.”

The business application process launched last December. Then, in January, it was announced that the state’s seed-to-sale tracking system would be implemented courtesy of Florida-headquartered Metrc.

Unfortunately, this wasn’t enough to spur on the start of adult-use cannabis sales in New Jersey.

“We have products going bad on our shelves. We have people with not enough work to keep them busy,” said the CEO of Curaleaf, Joe Bayern. The company provides its services in 23 states and a number of South Jersey towns.

Potential supply issues could hinder growth of New York’s and New Jersey’s adult-use markets

Although industrial officials continue to reinforce skeptics that cannabis supplies remain ample for the adult-use and medical cannabis markets in New York and New Jersey, concerns are arising. 

According to a report from The New York Times that was published last year, cannabis supply shortages already pose a problem in each newly legal state. 

Supply issues have likely been exacerbated by the fact that the plant is still illegal under federal law and cannot legally be transferred across state lines. 

With that being said, cannabis products sold in the neighboring states must be cultivated and manufactured within state borders.

Whether these concerns are true or not, local cannabis suppliers must now step up their game or else drown under the tidal wave of demand that’s expected to inundate both states once legal sales begin.

Nonetheless, in New York’s Orange County, construction workers are gearing up to build a major cultivation and processing site on the territory where a disused state prison sits.

Then there’s New Jersey, 25 miles south of the border, where an industrial compound that was formerly owned by German multinational science and technology company Merck will be transformed and expanded to create a more efficient cultivation hub.

Analysts from Interactive Advisors say that, combined, New York’s and New Jersey’s adult-use cannabis markets could generate in excess of $6 billion within the next five years.