New York Allows Cannabis Farmers’ Markets This Summer

New York cannabis growers will be allowed to organize and participate in cannabis farmers’ markets beginning this summer, according to a recent announcement from the state’s Office of Cannabis Management (OCM).

The farmers’ markets will help alleviate the glut of product New York’s cannabis growers currently have since the state launched adult-use sales in December 2022, according to OCM Director of Policy John Kagia. There were approximately 200 cannabis cultivators who grew outdoors in New York in 2022, and only 13 licensed retailers currently operating in the state, per Green Market Report.

“The solution we’re working on right now … are what we’re calling the New York Cannabis Growers Showcase,” Kagia said during a virtual town hall with the Cannabis Association of New York on May 25. “It’s a farmers market model, through which growers would have the ability to get together and organize farmers markets, in partnership with a retailer, where a minimum of three growers and a retailer can organize events.”

OCM is going to be “pretty liberal” in where the events can be hosted, pending local approval, including at concerts, festivals, or agricultural events, according to Kagia.

Growers will be permitted to participate in events across New York, while retailers will be limited to participating only in events located in the regions in which they operate. The farmers’ markets will also be open to retailers that are licensed but yet to open physical storefronts.

OCM is aiming to have the first farmers’ market event hosted “within a month,” OCM Chief Equity Officer Damian Fagon said. Growers and retailers will be largely responsible for planning, organizing and operating the events, according to OCM.

On-site consumption will not be prohibited, though “it could be in the future,” Fagon said. That decision is to prevent any additional permitting requirements needed for event approval by involving additional state public health agencies.

“We are trying to give the community as much flexibility to do as many of these events as possible,” Kagia said. “If there’s an opportunity to set up one of these every day of the week or every weekend, then we’ll back that and we’ll make the staff commitment to try and get those approved and going as quickly as possible.”

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Zach Mentz

Zach Mentz is an editor at Flavor Fix, covering cannabis, CBD and alcohol news and featured stories. Previously, he worked as senior editor of Cannabis Business Times (CBT). Mentz is a graduate of the Tim Russert Department of Communication at John Carroll University.

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