New Jersey’s first drive-thru cannabis dispensary officially opens

LODI, NJ – New Jersey’s first drive-thru cannabis dispensary officially opened on Saturday.

It’s been less than four months since recreational marijuana was legalized in the state, and 17 recreational dispensaries have opened up shop.

As CBS2’s Zinnia Maldonado reports, it’s a new way to get cannabis.

“It was very convenient because they have a drive-thru and it’s their opening day,” one customer said.

After a soft launch a few weeks ago, New Jersey’s first pot-and-driving dispensary is officially open. It is located at the Apothecarium on Route 17 in Lodi.

TerrAscend Corporation owns and operates the Apothecarium and two other New Jersey dispensaries.

“The drive-thru is the best,” said another customer.

“It allows them to pick up their order very quickly and easily,” said Chantelle Elsner, senior vice president of retail at TerrAscend. “And then on the other side, for patients who, you know, might have mobility issues or those who would prefer to stay in their car, it gives them a safe option.”

The drive-thru will only be open to medical patients during the first two hours of operation every day, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

“The state wanted to make sure medical patients didn’t have to wait too long in line for their medications,” said Jason Wild, executive chairman of TerrAscend.

Wild says it has been a positive experience working to launch cannabis sales with state officials.

“Taxpayers’ money is going to the state, and they have several programs in place that will be the recipients of taxpayers’ money,” he said.

Tax revenue from recreational cannabis sales from April 21, when the market opened, to the end of June totaled more than $4.5 million. That’s based on nearly $80 million in total sales from licensed retailers across the state.

Wild predicts that their three New Jersey locations will bring in $40 million each in their first 12 months.

“It’s been a long time coming,” Wild said. “We are here for the long haul.”

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