Virginia residents will soon be able to buy CBD and THC-A products from five locations across the state, NBC 12 reports.
The stores, which are largely operated by multi-state medical companies that have locations elsewhere, were licensed with the expectation that they open by the end of 2019.
The Virginia Board of Pharmacy licensed one store for each of its five designated health service areas (HSAs). Staunton, Manassas, Bristol, Richmond and Portsmouth will each have a dispensary. They're run by PharmaCann, Dalitso, Dharma Pharmaceuticals, Grean Leaf Medical and Columbia Care, respectively.
Each location is designed to give patients who suffer from a wide range of health problems easier access to CBD and THC-A oils.
A majority of Virginians have supported full decriminalization of marijuana for several years, and medical marijuana laws have enjoyed even broader support.
In 2018, Virginia allowed doctors to begin prescribing medical cannabis oil for any diagnosed condition. The state set regulations to begin licensing dispensaries within the state and began accepting applications at that time.
In order to receive a license, each dispensary paid a $10,000 application fee and $60,000 permit fee. They must each pay an additional $10,000 fee to maintain their license.
The new dispensaries will have CBD products more strictly regulated than consumer products that can be found in health food stores. A recent News4 I-Team investigation uncovered that some products labelled as containing CBD sold online or in natural health stores contained little to no CBD.
As the I-Team investigation shows, the lack of regulation on commercially available CBD products can also lead to substances like pesticides and lead finding their way into products.