It remains unclear whether farmers in New York will be able to legally grow marijuana this spring for a future adult-use market.
Speaking on The Capitol Pressroom, New York Office of Cannabis Management Executive Director Chris Alexander said he couldn’t speak to the timeline that state regulators will follow for the promulgation of rules governing a recreational market.
“What I can say is that we will continue to move as fast as humanly possible to get this market set up,” he added.
The work to produce these regulations got a slow start this summer, as then-Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Democratic legislative leaders were locked in a stalemate over the appointment of key regulatory positions. The ascension of Gov. Kathy Hochul broke the logjam and the newly appointed regulators have been hard at work ever since.
The Cannabis Control Board approved steps in October to dramatically expand access to the medical marijuana program and in early November it signed off on regulations governing the hemp industry.
“In case you can’t tell, we were moving very fast to catch up … and we’re going to continue to do so at this pace,” Alexander said.
The spring planting season is only a problem for farmers who plan on growing marijuana outdoors, which is the preferred method of state officials because of the carbon footprint of indoor growing facilities.