A recent hearing before the New Hampshire Cannabis Therapeutic Oversight Board on Nov. 24, covering the state’s medical cannabis program, brought a series of complaints from patients that local dispensary prices remain too high for regular customers.
A spot check conducted by Grown In of New Hampshire dispensaries show that flower costs $17-19 a gram at retail, depending on the source, with eighths costing $45-$50. Comparatively eighths can be bought in Massachusetts close to the New Hampshire border and in Maine from adult-use dispensaries at $40 each.
“This has been the number one complaint from patients all along,” said Matt Simon, spokesperson for Prime ATC, one of three companies licensed to supply medical cannabis in New Hampshire. “Historically, the prices were higher than they are now. As the patient numbers have increased, we’ve been able to see the economies of scale.”
Simon noted that medical cannabis providers in New Hampshire have difficulty competing with providers in other states with fewer testing requirements.
“One obvious expense is that all cannabis sold in New Hampshire has to be independently lab tested. That is not required for Maine caregivers,” he said.
Although New Hampshire does not currently have a clear path toward legal adult-use, Simon is confident that prices for medical patients will continue to decrease, especially once new legislation goes into effect that would allow medical patients from out of state to purchase at New Hampshire dispensaries.
“Once that’s implemented, that will increase the number of patients we can serve,” he said. “Anything the state can do to make it easier for users to access cannabis will help all around.”
The other demand from patients in New Hampshire is that the state approve new rules that would allow home growing. Although that might imply a cut in profits for dispensaries on paper, Simon said that he expects it to be a boon for the industry.
“It’s possible that it could get a small impact on our bottom line, but if its something that can help more patients have a steady supply I see it as a good thing,” he said.