Virginia’s 1st medical cannabis processor opens in Bristol

Virginia’s 1st medical cannabis processor opens in Bristol
In this Jan. 11, 2010 photo, a worker shows a marijuana bud for sale at the Lotus Medical dispensary in Denver. (Source: Ed Andrieski)

BRISTOL, Va. (AP) - Virginia’s first medical cannabis processor has officially opened to patients.

Dharma Pharmaceuticals held a grand opening Saturday morning in Bristol. It’s one of four pharmaceutical processors approved in the state to produce medical marijuana, TV station WCYB reported.

Lisa Smith and her daughter Haley made the trek to Bristol from Richmond earlier this week to receive the company’s first fill of medical cannabis oil, WJHL reported.

Smith, whose daughter has a severe form of epilepsy called Dravet Syndrome, lobbied at the General Assembly for a change in the state’s medical marijuana laws.

“It’s kind of surreal that it’s happening,” Lisa Smith said.

In order to enter the building, patients must first get a recommendation from a medical provider and register as a patient with the Board of Pharmacy.

“We’re excited to finally be serving patients at our facility,” Jack Page, co-founder and chief operating officer of Dharma Pharmaceuticals, said in a news release.

The company plans to expand to other locations soon, WCYB reported.

A dispensary in Richmond hopes to open its doors by late October, the Times-Dispatch reported earlier this week.

Copyright 2020 Associated Press. All rights reserved.