Rhode Island has joined the list of American states where cannabis can be easily purchased in retail outlets by adult customers.
The recreational pot sales commenced on December 1 following the Rhode Island Cannabis Act being passed on May 25 and an announcement from State Governor Dan McKee on November 22 providing further details.
United States President Joe Biden also signed the Medical Marijuana and Cannabidiol Research Expansion Act the following day on December 2, marking another milestone for cannabis in the U.S.
The bill establishes a new registration process for engaging in research on cannabis and manufacturing pot products for investigational purposes and drug formulation. It aims to remove barriers that hinder the progress of research on the plant.
“For decades, the federal government has stood in the way of science and progress—peddling a misguided and discriminatory approach to cannabis. Today marks a monumental step in remedying our federal cannabis laws,” said the members of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus in a joint statement.
“The Medical Marijuana and Cannabidiol Research Expansion Act will make it easier to study the impacts and potential of cannabis.”
I’m very pleased President Biden has signed into law our legislation to cut red tape around the marijuana research process. After years of negotiation, we’re finally enacting this bill that will result in critical research that could help millions.https://t.co/c7pscvKNT9
— Senator Dianne Feinstein (@SenFeinstein) December 2, 2022
Rhode Island will begin selling recreational bud in five designated dispensaries that have been granted hybrid retail licenses, allowing them to distribute medical and recreational cannabis simultaneously. The state government began encouraging applications for those licenses in early October.
They are the Aura of Rhode Island in Central Falls; RISE Warwick; the Thomas C. Slater Center in Providence; the Greenleaf Compassionate Care Center in Portsmouth and Mother Earth Wellness in Pawtucket.
“This milestone is the result of a carefully executed process to ensure that our state’s entry into this emerging market was done in a safe, controlled and equitable manner,” said Dan McKee, Governor of Rhode Island.
“It is also a win for our statewide economy and our strong, locally based cannabis supply chain, which consists of nearly 70 licensed cultivators, processors and manufacturers in addition to our licensed compassion centers.”
Congratulations, #RhodeIsland 🎉
Today marks the first day that adult-use cannabis sales officially begin in the state. Time to celebrate 🔥 pic.twitter.com/goTcaHOq97
— Weedmaps (@weedmaps) December 1, 2022
McKee concluded by saying that he was thankful for the leadership of the General Assembly in passing a practical implementation framework in the Rhode Island Cannabis Act.