Potential cannabis growers anxiously wait for MSDH license approval

Published: Jul. 1, 2022 at 6:17 PM CDT
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BATESVILLE, Miss. (WMC) - It’s been a month since the launch of the application process for the Mississippi Medical Cannabis Program (MMCP), and potential cultivators, or growers, who’ve applied for a license say they could be getting word back from the Mississippi Department of Health (MSDH) at any moment now.

“It’s supposed to be 30 (days),” said potential grower Todd Franklin. “Once I get that license, I’m ready to go.”

Franklin runs the soon-to-be cannabis business One Source Product outside of Batesville.

We spoke with Franklin back in mid-March, when there was uncertainty on if greenhouses would be allowed in the growing process of MMCP.

He’s abandoned the greenhouse concept, and 2 new buildings stand on his property.

“This is where we’ll start our seedlings,” Franklin said pointing to one of the completed racks in the first building we went inside. “We’ll have 6,000 square feet of working floor space.”

We asked if this was more or less than he thought he’d have when he started building greenhouses several months ago.

“It’s double,” Franklin said. “This is double... because why not?”

And why not? Franklin said he’s already heavily invested in the cannabis growing process.

The cost to apply for cultivating, according to Franklin, is $50,000, with an additional $20,000 Franklin had to pay to the Tennessee Valley Authority to expand the grid to reach his 2 new buildings.

Franklin is currently 1 of 29 businesses waiting on their cultivation permit to be approved, according to numbers from MSDH.

He’s making sure that the only thing that’s left to do when his application is approved is put seeds in the ground, and he’s already got orders on standby.

He told us he’s ordering 4,000 seeds that will be made up of 5 different types of cannabis, overnighting these orders from two separate seed banks in Oklahoma and Michigan.

“We’re doing the oils here,” Franklin said, describing his plans for finished product. “We’re processing oil only, and then we’ll do the bud and the flowers here.”

One Source Product is the only operation that’s this far along in Panola County, according to Franklin.

He has a pharmacist on staff, with connections to people planning to put a dispensary in Batesville.

Once his license is approved, he says he’s 120 days from his first round of finished product ready to stock the shelves.

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