|On Monday, Dec. 1, the Minnesota Department of Health made a key step on its journey toward medical marijuana legalization by announcing the two companies that will manufacture the state’s medical marijuana supply.
Department of Health officials finally chose Minnesota Medical Solutions and LeafLine Labs to take on the role — the companies will be responsible for growing medical marijuana and processing it into pill, vapor or liquid form for patients, the Daily Journal reports.
According to a KSTP-TV article, 29 interested parties were narrowed down to 12 applicants for the role of manufacturing the state’s medical marijuana, each of whom had to pay a nonrefundable $20,000 application fee to be considered.
Once Minnesota has fully legalized medicinal marijuana for its residents, it will be the 24th state along with the District of Columbia to allow medical marijuana. KSTP-TV reports that the state will begin distributing medical marijuana to patients on July 1, 2015.
Studies have revealed numerous ailments that using medicinal marijuana can treat. From alleviating chemotherapy side effects to fighting epilepsy, many people seek out medical marijuana as an effective form of treatment that doesn’t involve the side effects of prescription drugs.
Medical marijuana won’t just provide numerous health benefits to Minnesota residents who qualify for a prescription — its presence in the Land of 10,000 Lakes will also act as an economic boon in Cottage Grove and Otsego, where Leafline Labs and Minnesota Medical Solutions are respectively located. Cottage Grove alone expects about 50 high-paying jobs to be added to the local economy, according to KSTP-TV.
“It is a big game changer, so we’re pretty excited to be on the cutting edge,” Cottage Grove Mayor Myron Bailey told KSTP-TV. “It’ll be a nice gift for the city of Cottage Grove and its residents with taxes and its new jobs.”