Ohio’s ‘craft’ marijuana growers want state OK to expand, say products are selling out

The About Wellness Ohio dispensary in Lebanon has more than two dozen different types, or strains, of medical marijuana on its daily menu.

But the strain that helps Kathryn Kehoe manage her Crohn’s disease the best has been out of stock for months.

There are other strains that help, she said, but CV#5 from Columbus grower Fire Rock has reduced or eliminated her symptoms enough she can actually eat and get a good night’s sleep.

“Finding relief like that is rare for me,” Kehoe, of Mason, said.

It’s been two months since Kehoe has been able to buy CV#5. That’s because Fire Rock can’t grow enough of that strain and others to keep up with patient demand.

They’ve run out of room.

As a smaller, “level II” grower, Fire Rock was allotted 3,000 square feet of growing space with an asterisk – they could, in the future, expand to up to 9,000 square feet. Larger, “level I” growers have up to 25,000 square feet to grow.

Fire Rock and four other small-scale “craft” cultivators have asked permission to double their space. They say they are constantly selling out of their product and struggle to meet a state inventory requirement of at least 10 pounds of marijuana.

“We are having to limit dispensaries on how much flower they are allowed to buy,” Tom Hobson of Wellspring Fields wrote to state officials in a May 15 email obtained through a public records request. “I do believe that these shortages are only going to increase.”

But the Ohio Department of Commerce officially denied…

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