The only remaining medical marijuana safety compliance facility in Southwest Michigan will be given the opportunity to keep its doors open while it seeks a state license.
Kalamazoo’s City Commission has yet to think about an ordinance allowing five different medical marijuana facilities legalized by the state. This past Monday, Kalamazoo’s City Commission passed a law allowing The Spott Laboratory, located at 901 Riverview Dr., to remain open while a decision on other facilities is reached.
In the meantime, owner Linda Palmatier will seek a license with the state’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. The application period opened Dec. 15, and Palmatier is required to apply for a license before Feb. 15, 2018.
If an ordinance was not adopted, the business would be required to cease and desist before making application to the state for a license. City Commissioners felt the move was necessary to protect public health while the application is processed.
Though Michigan legalized medical marijuana back in 2008, the product was not needed to be-be examined for contaminants or potency until new laws signed by Gov. Rick Snyder took effect this month. Started in 2014, The Spott tests samples of medicinal cannabis to make sure dispensaries, caregivers, and home growers are providing patients with a safe and properly dosed product.
It’s one of only a handful in the state, and the only lab in Southwest Michigan, Palmatier said. She said her business performs a vital function for medical marijuana cardholders in the area.
Palmatier called the ordinance a “godsend” for her business. Her goal is to run the best lab in the state.
Testing helps users and provisioning centers know the chemical compounds in each product; hundreds of distinct cannabinoids are good for treating different ailments.
Not all forms of medicinal marijuana will get you high.
There is a significant difference between THC, a psychoactive substance released when cannabis is heated up, and CBD, which has more therapeutic benefits without leaving the user couch locked.
Advanced machines separate the chemical compounds so analysts can tell the user what kind of effect to expect, and how strong the dose will be.
The Portage City Commission adopted a similar ordinance governing dispensaries, which was used as a model for the proposed Kalamazoo ordinance. Portage’s vote ensured that Lake Effect provisioning center can remain open.
Jevin Weyenberg, a manager of Lake Effect, thanked the Kalamazoo City Commission for its proactive action Monday. Without The Spott, he would likely have to send his product all the way to Lansing or Ann Arbor to be tested.
There are insufficient resources for those who use medical cannabis, Weyenberg said, and the only way to know if the product that some rely on to live is safe and correctly dosed is for it to be tested.
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