AP NEWS

Pot Cultivators Seek OK to Do Addict Research

January 9, 2019

FITCHBURG -- Garden Remedies, which has operated a medical-marijuana cultivation and processing facility in the city since 2016, is looking for approval from the state to research how marijuana could help treat people recovering from narcotics addiction and delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

“We need something that is much more effective,” CEO Karen Munkacy said Monday. “The research needs to be done.”

Over the years at its dispensaries in Newton and Melrose, Garden Remedies has had patients who have stopped using narcotics with the help of its products, she said. Munkacy, who has a background as an anesthesiologist and researcher, is interested in the science that observation.

Research could encourage doctors to prescribe marijuana to help people recovering from opiate use and findings could be medical journals.

The goal is to work with scientists who would design studies and carry out the research, she said. Garden Remedies would help recruit patients to participate.

Research wouldn’t take place at the facility at 307 Airport Road, meaning there aren’t changes expected to the existing building, Munkacy said.

Instead, that work will be done at academic institutions or medical centers around the state that Garden Remedies plans to partner with, she said. Munkacy didn’t specify which institutions it plans to work with because agreements are in the works.

“Massachusetts is a great place for research,” she said.

To receive the approval to start research, Garden Remedies needs a license from the Cannabis Control Commission.

Outreach meeting Friday at library

As part of that process, it will hold a community outreach meeting Friday at the library at 3 p.m.

The business’ Airport Road facility was one of the first marijuana establishments opened in the city.

Garden Remedies runs dispensaries that are licensed through the Department of Public Health.

As the business seeks licensing from the Cannabis Control Commission for research, multiple recreational and medical marijuana establishments are seeking approval to open in Fitchburg.

Retail, cultivation, and transportation facilities have been proposed in the city that have required action from the Planning Board and mayor’s office to draft a community host agreement, which is another component needed for businesses to obtain a license from the state.

Follow Mina on Twitter @mlcorpuz

AP RADIO
Update hourly