Tuesday, September 15, 2009

New Mexico Medical Marijuana News

New Mexico's one medical marijuana producer admits it can't meet

"...participation in the program has outgrown our ability to serve

By Marjorie Childress
9/14/09 12:01 AM

New Mexico's sole medical marijuana provider, Santa Fe Institute for
Natural Medicine, has informed the state that it is unable to meet
existing demand given an increased number of patients.

In a note dated September 1 posted on its website, SFINM makes clear
that it has informed state officials at the Department of Health that it
cannot meet demand for medical marijuana, and that the state has in turn
said it will move forward withlicensing a second producer of the drug.

From the note:

We advised the Department of Health that we are unable to provide
uninterrupted medicine to the growing number of patients. According to
the law, DOH can only issue as many licenses as needed to serve the
patient population. Because participation in the program has outgrown
our ability to serve everyone, DOH advises it will now move forward to
issue a second producer license. When this occurs, all patients will be

SFINM received its license in the spring of 2009 and had its first crop
ready to go in August. It informed patients in an August 28 note on its
website that it had run out, and expected to have more for sale in

At the time, New Mexico Department of Health spokesperson Chris Minnick
told NMI that it was unclear whether or not SFINM met the demand in the
state before it ran out of marijuana. Because patients are allowed to
have a three-month supply, it's possible that all patients who
needed to make purchases were able to do so before the non-profit ran
out, he said.

He also said the DOH is working through 20 nonprofit applications with
the expectation of licensing another one "soon."

In a follow-up conversation, Minnick said that SFINM may have informed
the Secretary of the DOH, Dr. Alfredo Vigil, that it couldn't meet
the demand in the state, and that he would get back to us if there is a
more concrete time-frame available for when the next non-profit would be

NMI asked if the state had been waiting to license a second non-profit
in the state until the Department saw if SFINM could meet the demand. He
replied that they are diligently working to evaluate the applications,
but that there is also a primary objective to meet demand without
"excess supply."

"We want to be very careful that we don't have excess supply in
the state, while making sure there is enough for patients," Minnick

The state's medical marijuana program allows production by either
small nonprofits that can grow up to 95 plants at a time, or patients
themselves who can grow four plants at a time.

In either case, a license to produce has to be given by the state. Since
the program was put in place in late 2008, SFINM is the only nonprofit
that's been given the green light to produce. It was approved in the
spring of 2009, and had its first batch ready for sale in August.

Representatives of SFINM have not returned a call seeking an interview.

http://newmexicoind ependent. com/36038/ new-mexicos- one-medical- marijuana- \
producer-admits- it-cant-meet- demand

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