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Marijuana Farmers Markets To Relaunch In New York Under Bill In Legislature

ALBANY, NY – Marijuana farmers markets would be revived and made permanent in the state of New York under a bill approved by lawmakers, Marijuana Moment reports.

Sponsored by Sen. Michelle Hinchey (D) and Assemblymember Donna Lupardo (D), the bill passed in the State Senate and Assembly last week and now goes to the desk of Gov. Kathy Hochul.

The measure gives the state Office of Cannabis Management the authority to draft new regulations to re-establish the Cannabis Growers Showcase (CGS) program, which was authorized temporarily but expired on Jan. 1. Permits for the farmers markets could be issued indefinitely.

The Cannabis Growers Showcase (CGS) program was created in 2023 to aid cannabis cultivators who had struggled with the lack of legal markets for their products and were sitting on a surplus.  Most farmers had been operating at a loss, as delays in the opening of new dispensaries meant they had thousands of pounds of products they could not sell.

The CGS program was designed to partner cultivators with dispensary licensees, so that they could educate the market about their offerings, sell their product, generate income, and provide legal access to consumers who lived too far away from legal dispensaries or who didn’t want to purchase their cannabis from illicit sources.  A memo contained in the new bill said the program had been a success, “bringing cultivators, processors, and retail licensees together in a way where they could directly interact with and educate consumers, build brand recognition, and orient consumers to the legal market’s offerings.”

Under the bill passed in the legislature, a licensed marijuana retailer would need to partner with a grower or processor in order to receive a permit and also receive a secondary permit for each event they hold, which could last up to two weeks at a time.

“We should be nimble enough to recognize and sustain a successful market opportunity when we have it, and this holds true for Cannabis Growers Showcases, which have been immensely beneficial in helping our farmers find a market for some of the cannabis oversupply and providing places to buy cannabis in the absence of legal dispensaries,” Hinchey said late last year before the program expired.

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