Legislators Want Medical Marijuana Farming in Minnesota

Monday, April 25, 2011

Outdoor Medical Cannabis Farm

Bill would allow growers to sell to dispensaries in states where it's legal

A bill introduced in the Minnesota Legislature on Thursday would make it legal for farmers to grow medical marijuana and sell it to dispensaries in states where marijuana can be legally used for medicinal purposes. The Medical Marijuana Production and Export Act would direct the state government to develop a strict licensing plan for the potential grower and cites a positive economic benefit for the state’s agricultural sector.

Currently, sixteen states have legalized medical marijuana including Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.

The bill (HF662) would allow Minnesota farmers to grow and export medical marijuana to those states. From the bill:

The legislature finds that the production and export of medical marijuana can contribute to the state’s economy and agricultural vitality and can be regulated so as not to interfere with the strict regulation of controlled substances in this state. The purpose of the Medical Marijuana Production and Export Act is to strengthen the state economy and its agricultural sectors by authorizing the development of a regulated medical marijuana production and export industry while maintaining strict control of marijuana.

And:

(1) the person will produce, process, and possess marijuana only for export and in full compliance with this chapter and any corresponding rules promulgated by the commissioner; and (2) any consumption or unauthorized possession of marijuana will be prosecuted to the fullest extent provided by law.

The bill’s authors are DFL Reps. Phyllis Kahn of Minneapolis, Tom Rukavina of Virginia, Frank Hornstein of Minneapolis, Tom Huntley of Duluth, Karen Clark of Minneapolis, Jeff Hayden of Minneapollis, and Leon Lillie of North St. Paul.