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Pennsylvania revokes marijuana grower’s permit after weed mysteriously disappears

Agrimed won a permit to grow medical marijuana two years ago. Still, it has not shipped any for sale within the state.

A marijuana bud before harvesting.
A marijuana bud before harvesting.Read moreAndrew Selsky / AP

Pennsylvania has revoked the cultivation permit of a medical marijuana grower for not meeting its production obligations and flouting other rules, according to state Health Secretary Rachel Levine.

Agrimed Industries in Western Pennsylvania was one of 12 growers granted a permit in June 2017 to produce cannabis for Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana patients. It was among the highest scorers on the Department of Health’s highly competitive application process. Two years later, it still has failed to produce any marijuana for the medical market.

Early this month, after a surprise inspection by health officials, Agrimed was ordered to cease harvesting or destroying its crop without state supervision. A regulator had found “a flagrant disregard” for regulations, “grossly mismanaged” plants, and the possibility that some of those plants had been diverted to the underground market.

The company recently entered into a management service agreement with Arizona-based Harvest Inc. to run the grow facility in Carmichaels, Greene County. A Harvest spokesperson did not immediately return requests for comment.

Agrimed has been hit with several mishaps in the last two years. Its former chief executive was found to have not disclosed a prior arrest on the company’s application and labor strife had held up construction of the facility.

According to the Department of Health, Agrimed was not able to produce records about how or when it destroyed mature marijuana plants, and could not produce required security footage of the destruction of the plants “because the security cameras were frequently nonfunctional.”

Agrimed has 30 days to appeal the state’s decision.

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