History made: Mississippi’s first medical marijuana dispensaries open for business

Published on January 25, 2023 · Last updated January 31, 2023
Mississippi Cannabis Trade Association Executive Director Melvin Robinson III greets medical marijuana patient Debbie McDermott outside The Cannabis Company dispensary in Brookhaven, Mississippi, on Wednesday afternoon.

In a historic moment for the cannabis legalization movement, Mississippi’s first legal sale of medical marijuana took place earlier today in the town of Brookhaven.

“It’s a very exciting day today,” said Melvin C. Robinson III, executive director of the Mississippi Cannabis Trade Association, who was on hand outside The Cannabis Company dispensary to celebrate the first sale on Wednesday afternoon. “History has been made in Brookhaven.”

Debbie McDermott, a local woman who suffers from chronic pain, made the first purchase. “I think it’s going to [offer] so much help for so many people,” McDermott said. “I’m excited that there’s an alternative to the medicines that are good, but they’re not great, like opiates.”

The first of 162 licensed dispensaries

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves signed the state’s medical marijuana legalization legislation into law on Feb. 2, 2022. Since then, the state has issued licenses to 162 dispensaries, most of which are expected to open over the coming year.

In these early days, product selection is expected to be relatively limited as farmers and manufacturers get their operations up and running. The Cannabis Company’s menu so far features Apple Fritter flower for $60 an eighth.

Dispensaries also open in Oxford and St. Martin

Jake Davis, reporter for the Oxford Eagle, was on hand for another first-day sale, this one at Hybrid Relief Cannabis in Oxford. According to the dispensary’s menu on Leafly, OG Kush grams were selling for $11.42.

Local news station WXXV reported that another dispensary, Bee’s Buds in the town of St. Martin, also expected to serve its first patients on Wednesday.

Bee’s Buds CEO Barbara Wilson told WXXV: “Our biggest thing is that we love helping people, and the reason why I got into this is because I know that this will help a lot of patients, and they won’t have the side effects that a lot of them do with medications and stuff, so we’re really excited about that.”

So far the Mississippi State Department of Health has registered around 1,700 patients for the legal purchase and use of medical cannabis.

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Bruce Barcott
Bruce Barcott
Leafly Senior Editor Bruce Barcott oversees news, investigations, and feature projects. He is a Guggenheim Fellow and author of Weed the People: The Future of Legal Marijuana in America.
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