Minnesota medical marijuana manufacturer is expanding business to New York

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Minnesota Medical Solutions, one of two companies licensed to produce medical marijuana in the state, is expanding its business to New York.

Empire State Health Solutions, the New York branch of the Minnesota company, was one of five organizations picked by the New York Department of Health Friday to manufacture and dispense the drug under the state's new program, which it hopes to implement in January, a news release notes.

Dr. Kyle Kingsley, the Minnesota physician behind Minnesota Medical Solutions, is also running the New York branch, MPR News reports, telling the news station that they're building the "MinnMed model in New York, and that has been validated through their selection process."

New York's law is similar to Minnesota's, which includes a set of defined conditions and provisions to allow health care providers to authorize patients to obtain the drug, MPR News notes.

Kingsley told the Wall Street Journal that “We are ready to start production immediately and are confident that we will meet the state’s deadline and be ready to serve patients in January."

Medical marijuana became legal in Minnesota July 1, and slowly the number of patients registered for the program has grown.

As of Friday, there have been 250 people authorized to pickup medical marijuana, while there are 334 health care practitioners registered and authorized to certify patients for the program, the Minnesota Department of Health says.

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MinnMed and LeafLine Labs (the state's other medical cannabis producer) opened the state's first two clinics in Minneapolis and Eagan on July 1. MinnMed then opened its second clinic in Rochester later in the month.

Eventually, eight clinics will open in the state. MinnMed plans to open its third clinic in Moorhead later this summer, the Star Tribune says. The company will open a fourth clinic in Eden Prairie before next July, MPR News noted.

LeafLine Labs will open its second clinic in October, with two more opening in St. Paul and Hibbing next year, the Star Tribune says.

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