Michigan has become an enticing market for marijuana businesses.
A group of investors and partners, including Chris Guerrin, collaborated to purchase a tract of West Michigan farmland and opened a small startup medical marijuana provision center in Paw Paw.
Canna 43 opened Jan. 2 and Guerrin is the general manager of the center. Although it has been open for less than two weeks, Guerrin said there has been a steady flow of consumers.
He moved to Michigan about a year ago from Colorado, where he was a caregiver and also a consultant for marijuana dispensaries, to set up growing space for marijuana plants and process extraction lab practices.
He said he moved to Michigan because it is not an overpopulated marijuana market.
“Colorado is a pretty tapped market,” he said. “Cost of living is really high, so opening a (provision center) here makes a lot more sense with the cost of living and with the emerging market.”
The farmland was purchased from the Leduc family, who are multigenerational blueberry farmers. The family declined to comment, but according to Guerrin, the family still operates the blueberry farm. However, they have no affiliation with Guerrin and Canna 43.
The Paw Paw-based provision center is about 33,700 square feet. It sells medical marijuana and other marijuana and CBD products, such as edible chocolates, gummies, mints, caramel, marijuana tinctures and topicals, cannabis flower and concentrates from the flower, among other things.
Guerrin said they buy their marijuana plants from licensed growers in Michigan but hope to grow their own marijuana plants after they complete the construction this summer of a 10,000-square-foot growing area, which will be located on the same property next door to the provision center.
In addition to the new growing space, Guerrin said they are working to acquire their recreational license, which he said he hopes to get by spring.
Retailers began selling adult-use recreational marijuana on Dec. 1 after the state legislature finalized the rules surrounding the plant more than a year after Michiganders voted to legalize it.
According to the Michigan Marijuana Regulatory Agency, there have been 115 establishment license applications received and 58 adult-use licenses have been issued so far. They include:
- 31 marijuana retailer licenses
- 14 class C marijuana grower licenses to 6 different licensees
- 6 processors licenses
- 4 secure transporters licenses
- 2 marijuana event organizers licenses
- 1 marijuana safety compliance facility license
Over the first five weeks, ending on Jan. 5, sales have been gradually increasing. The agency reported $8,251,118 in total adult-use sales and $1,369,686 in combined excise and sales taxes.
Week 5, which was from Dec. 30 to Jan. 5, had the highest weekly total sales to date of $1,773,789. The sales resulted in $177,300 in excise tax and $117,018 in sales tax, according to the agency.