Expanded Louisiana medical pot program drawing tens of of millions of dollars in investment

When sales in Louisiana’s restrictive medical marijuana program began in 2019, advocates and prospective marijuana business owners worried it would be tough sledding to survive financially, given the reams of regulations attached to the program.

But the recent relaxation of many of those rules – including, crucially, the addition of more popular flower products – has rapidly drawn major investment in Louisiana’s pot industry. Now, for the few companies who have control over growing and selling the drug through exclusive state licenses, big profits seem possible.

Public records show the state’s two growers – private companies hired by LSU and Southern University, respectively – spent the most money yet on their production in 2021, with LSU’s partner shelling out tens of millions of dollars to boost its growing capabilities.

Tax data indicates sales are starting to pick up as well. The two growers pay a 7% fee on whatever they sell, and in the fiscal year that ended in July, they remitted more than $270,000, suggesting gross sales of nearly $4 million. In the first two quarters of the current fiscal year, the growers already exceeded that number. And that was before flower sales even began, meaning they will likely see huge year-over-year growth. [Read more at The Advocate]

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