Nine months into Utah’s medical cannabis program, only about half of the state’s eight growers are contributing most of the entire supply.
According to state records, only four of Utah’s growers are responsible for about 96 percent of the medical cannabis harvested in the state. Other growers supplied only a few hundred pounds of cured cannabis for the past year.
The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF), will hold a public hearing on the license renewals later this month. Growers must pay an astounding $100,000 per year for their cultivation licenses in the state.
“You have to try to put out that little product,” Narith Panh, chief strategy officer for Dragonfly Wellness, told The Salt Lake Tribune. “Anybody in their own garage can put out the same amount of product that some of these producers are putting out right now.” Dragonfly Wellness is the state’s top-performing producer thus far.
Desiree Hennessy is executive director of the Utah Patients Coalition. “It’s really easy to look at somebody else and say they’re not doing their best, or they’re not even trying,” said Hennessy. “But when you talk to the growers, they’re very emotionally invested. It’s very important to them that they serve patients.”
Dragonfly Wellness produced over 6,853 pounds of cured cannabis, according to records, with the second-highest producer yielded 1,859 pounds. Tryke Companies Utah contributed 1,778 pounds of cured cannabis to the program, and Harvest of Utah has produced about 155 pounds. Wholesome Ag and Zion Cultivars produced about 82 pounds and 69 pounds respectively.
Total sales revenue at Utah medical cannabis pharmacies has climbed from about $217,000 in March to about $3.4 million in October, the last month of available data. Last September, Utah medical cannabis sales and patient numbers surpassed predictions.