What's holding up the sale of recreational marijuana in New Jersey?

SOMERVILLE, New Jersey (WABC) -- Legal pot is supposed to hit the market in less than two weeks in New Jersey ... that's not going to happen. So, what's the hang up?

Anyone waiting patiently for adult recreation marijuana sales in New Jersey to begin?

February was a semi-hard date thrown out there, but there is still tweaking needed says the executive director of the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission.

"We started in December accepting applications for cultivators and manufacturers -- essentially businesses that will grow and manufacture cannabis products, and to date we've received roughly 350 applications," Atjeff Brown said.

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The industry needs to make sure there is enough supply.

Sales could potentially bring in a billion dollars in revenue for a state eager to have that added to the coffers.

Governor Phil Murphy addressed recreational cannabis sales during 'Up Close' with Bill Ritter.

"I think we're within a number of weeks and not months where you'll see medical dispensaries get the ability to sell adult-use recreational as long as they as they can convince the commission that they won't abandon their patients," Murphy said.

In passing recreational sales in the state, lawmakers insisted on inclusion.

"Businesses owned by people from economically-disadvantaged areas in the state of New Jersey or businesses owned by people who have past marijuana convictions for possession," Brown said.

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It means foods like like macaroni and cheese, pizza, and mozzarella sticks will be off the menu.


Once licenses are approved for the many industries that will grow, manufacture, distribute and sell cannabis, it will take time for these businesses to set up shop.

Medical dispensaries would most likely be the first to be ready.

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