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The Cannabis Control Board approved 15 Adult-Use Conditional Processor licenses. These licenses comprise a key part of the supply chain supporting the opening of New York’s adult-use cannabis market through the Seeding Opportunity Initiative. Through the Initiative, processors will take adult-use cannabis currently being grown by New York farmers and turn it into consumer cannabis products. These products will then be sold at New York’s first retail dispensaries, through the Seeding Opportunity Initiative’s Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary program.

The conditional processor license was created by legislation signed by Governor Kathy Hochul in February 2022. To qualify, processors must hold a Cannabinoid Hemp Processor license issued by the Office of Cannabis Management and have applied for the license prior to January 1, 2022. Adult-Use Conditional Processors must participate in a mentorship program meant to provide pathways to industry and entrepreneurship opportunities for social equity applicants and participate in an environmental sustainability program.

The application opened on June 28 and will close August 31, 2022. Applications will be reviewed and approved on a rolling basis.

“Today’s Board Meeting brings us one step closer to launching New York’s legal cannabis marketplace. Processors aren’t just an important part of the cannabis supply chain, they are creators, who take a raw plant and transform into tested, consistent, high-quality products that consumers can trust,” said Tremaine Wright, Chair of the Cannabis Control Board. “When we open New York’s first stores, owned and operated by New Yorkers harmed by the misguided criminalization of cannabis, the shelves will be lined with infused edibles, topical creams and concentrated oils. None of those products would be possible without these first processors launching New York’s cannabis industry.”

“New York is launching our cannabis industry the right way, and our cannabis processors are an integral part of that,” said Office of Cannabis Management Executive Director Chris Alexander. “These processors aren’t just expanding their own businesses, they are committed to also mentoring the next generation of cannabis processors. They’ll be teaching vital manufacturing skills to those with a passion for cannabis who will take our state’s industry to the next level. New York’s entire cannabis ecosystem will create opportunities for those who have been shut out of jobs and industry, and will bring those skills to communities across the state.”

The Seeding Opportunity Initiative positions equity-entrepreneurs to be the first to make adult-use cannabis sales in New York with products grown by New York farmers. Under the Initiative, licenses would be awarded for Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensaries to equity-entrepreneurs who must meet two prongs of eligibility to qualify. First, they must have a cannabis-related conviction that occurred prior to the passage of the Marihuana Regulation and Tax Act (MRTA) on March 31, 2021, or had a parent, guardian, child, spouse, or dependent with a pre-MRTA cannabis-related conviction in the State of New York. Second, they must also have experience owning and operating a successful business in the State of New York.  

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