Two New Mexico state agencies confirmed on Wednesday in a letter that medical cannabis purchase limits will not increase, as it was previously suggested last month by a group of medical cannabis producers.
Related: NM medical cannabis patients should not expect increased purchase limits any time soon
In an official response to the group of five medical cannabis producers, New Mexico Department of Health Secretary Tracie Collins and state Regulation and Licensing Department Superintendent Linda Trujillo wrote that until commercial cannabis sales begin next year medical cannabis patients’ purchases will be limited to roughly eight ounces of cannabis in a rolling 90-day period. The Medical Cannabis Program, which is currently overseen by DOH, limits purchases to 230 units in 90-days. The program defines a unit as one gram of dried, smokable cannabis or 0.2 grams of cannabis concentrates or derivatives.
Even after commercial cannabis sales start, Collins and Trujillo wrote, medical cannabis purchases will be constrained, but patients could still opt to buy more cannabis through commercial sales.
“Until such time as commercial cannabis activity is permitted by the Cannabis Control Division, qualified patients will remain limited to medical purchases made pursuant to the [Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act], i.e., purchases in quantities that are within the 90-day adequate supply purchase limit, as specified in Section 6(K) of the [Cannabis Regulation Act],” the two wrote.
The section of the Cannabis Regulation Act the two department heads referred to states that medical cannabis producers “shall continue to operate under rules promulgated” by DOH until RLD issues new rules. But Collins and Trujillo also said they soon plan to announce proposed rule changes for producers that could include production limits for both medical and recreational-use cannabis.
“That rulemaking will include revisions to existing producer plant limits, although the content of the proposed rules has not yet been determined.
Interpretation of the law
Collins and Trujillo wrote the letter in response to a letter from medical cannabis producers Ultra Health, G&G Genetics, Budding Hope, Kure and Sacred Garden, which was sent on April 14.
The group of producers argued that on June 29, when the Cannabis Regulation Act goes into effect, medical cannabis patients should be allowed to purchase two ounces of dried cannabis, 16 grams of extract and 0.8 grams of edible cannabis at a time, as the new law states.
With no limit on the number of purchases in a day, a patient could purchase double the amount that is allowed under the current law in a matter of eight trips to a dispensary. So, the producers reasoned, the state should consider an increase in production limits as soon as possible.