Cannabis retailers in Pittsfield, Great Barrington get final licenses

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PITTSFIELD — Recreational marijuana should make landfall in Berkshire County within the month.

On Thursday the Cannabis Control Commission green-lighted final licenses for Temescal Wellness, on Callahan Drive in Pittsfield, and Theory Wellness, on Stockbridge Road in Great Barrington.

Both retailers are already selling to consumers with medical marijuana cards, but the decision clears the way for the shops to sell to anyone 21 or over. They will be the first in Berkshire County to do so, two years after Massachusetts voters legalized recreational cannabis.

Retailers await final inspections from the state before they can open their doors to the general adult public, but are expected to be up and running within the month.

There are so far two recreational marijuana retailers open for businesses in Massachusetts — one in Northampton and one in Leicester. Between the two of them, they've netted more than $7 million in gross sales since the industry launched to much fanfare on Nov. 20.

Leaders at Theory and Temescal say that in the days ahead they'll busy themselves with transferring their medical supply to recreational, and plugging into a state database used to track cannabis inventory.

After that, Theory CEO Brandon Pollock said, the state will do one last "sales ready" inspection.

"And then we should be good to go," he said. "I can say it's weeks now, not months."

Pollock said he hired 15 additional people at the Great Barrington operation, lined up traffic detail through the Great Police Department and put together parking maps in preparation for the start of recreational sales.

"Once we get that approval we'll be ready to open immediately," he said.

Julia Germaine, Temescal's corporate development director, said since the retailers will need to schedule state inspections amid the holiday season, she's expecting the Pittsfield shop to open for recreational sales in four weeks. "We're being conservative," she said.

Pollock said his team is considering putting purchase limits in place to make sure supply keeps pace with demand, since "it's a real unknown how busy we will be."

"We're very excited about it," he said. "We think it's going to be a great thing for our community, both culturally and economically."

Germaine echoed the sentiment: "We're very excited to serve consumers in the Berkshires and beyond."

Amanda Drane can be contacted at adrane@berkshireeagle.com, @amandadrane on Twitter, and 413-496-6296.


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