Illinois-based medical cannabis company PharmaCann is quietly suing Virginia Board of Pharmacy over a Staunton medical cannabis site.
Since 2018, the Virginia Board of Pharmacy chose five companies to be the first medical marijuana dispensaries in the state and out of 51 applicants, the five companies chosen included three established out-of-state businesses and two new Virginia-based entrepreneurs.
PharmaCann is one of the businesses. The company chose Staunton as the location for a medical marijuana growing facility and dispensary in a building to be constructed on 3 Industry Way in Green Hills Industrial Park.
It was in May of 2019 that the company purchased the land for $212,352, according to city records.
“I think it’s good news for Virginia,” said Jenn Michelle Pedini, executive director of Virginia NORML when the five were awarded conditional permits. “Columbia Care and PharmaCann are some of the best in the business.”
PharmaCann was given one year to build the facility and begin growing marijuana for cultivation and processing.
The medical cannabis facility was required to be submitted for inspection by the Virginia Board of Pharmacy by the end of 2019 in order to receive a permit to open and provide medical cannabis to patients.
It was however in June 16, 2020, MedMen, the company that took over the facility license from PharmaCann, lost their license from the Virginia Board of Pharmacy.
Then MedMen Enterprises Inc. was supposed to be merging with PharmaCann in one of the biggest deals in the marijuana industry but the merger was terminated.
“Not sure what’s going on,” said William Vaughn, director of community and economic development for the City of Staunton, at the time. “I hope Staunton is still a point of interest for other potential entities. Maybe the PharmaCann/MedMen site in Green Hills comes in to play.”
MedMen received the business license for the Staunton facility from PharmaCann, and it was then sold in December 2019 to MedMen for $10.
In a statement provided by MedMen representative, Andrew Lamar, the company said the following:
“Due to circumstances outside of our control, construction of our facility in Staunton has experienced significant delays. We are working diligently with the Board of Pharmacy and local leaders to commence construction.”
After MedMen failed inspection, it led to disciplinary action from the Virginia Board of Pharmacy.
In a civil lawsuit, PharmaCann claims that technically the permit belongs to them and that no other medical cannabis company should be awarded the conditional license by the Virginia Board of Pharmacy.
The case is still pending in circuit court.