07 Feb Times Union: Medical marijuana dispensary opens in Halfmoon
HALFMOON — A medical marijuana dispensary is opening in Halfmoon on Friday, and it’s already seen a steady drumbeat of patients.
Fiorello Pharmaceuticals held a soft opening for the retail dispensary last week, and will hold a grand opening Friday. Located just off the Northway in the town’s Watkins Plaza, the store is the Capital Region’s third medical marijuana dispensary to open since the state legalized its use in 2014, and the only dispensary to open outside Albany County.
“Even before we opened, we had knocks on the door from patients and practitioners,” said Eric Sirota, co-CEO at Fiorello. “So we’ve already had really, really good patient flow, even with just a soft opening. Now that we’re launching for real and getting the word out, we expect to be very busy.”
Fiorello formed in 2014, and its founders hoped to enter the New York market right away. That didn’t happen, as it placed seventh out of 43 applicants vying for just five licenses. Instead, it waited, and when the state Department of Health announced in 2016 it would issue an additional five licenses, it applied again and was approved.
The license enables Fiorello to operate one production facility and four retail dispensaries. It opened the production facility in Glenville last year, and is in the process of opening dispensaries in Halfmoon, Rochester, Manhattan and Nassau. Halfmoon was the first to open, followed by Rochester on Monday. The other two will open later this month.
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