South Dakota’s first medical marijuana dispensary to open Thursday

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We’re getting a look inside South Dakota’s first medical marijuana dispensary.

The Native Nations Dispensary is expected to open on July 1 when medical marijuana is set to become legal in South Dakota. It’s located on the Flandreau Santee Sioux Reservation.

The dispensary on the reservation will be another option for South Dakotans who meet the requirements. The Tribe has been preparing for months. The Attorney General for the Tribe tells us cards from other states will be accepted. It will also be issuing its own cards.

South Dakota’s first dispensary will open to customers on Thursday – inside what was once a police station.

“We will have an intake side where we will check everybody’s ID, we will make sure they have a medical card and then we will buzz them through the door to go into the dispensary side,” COO of Native Nations Cannabis, Jonathan Hunt said.

On the dispensary side you’ll find four spots where you can purchase products.

Work is still underway on the lab and kitchen portion of the building.

“We have a temporary extraction lab and processing facility, what we are doing in here is we are making edibles, smokables, and concentrates,” Hunt said.

Over in the cultivation facility, areas are divided up to house plants during the different stages of growth.

“On the first floor is where we do all of our propagation and all of our cloning, we also have our incubators there for accelerating the roots,” Hunt said.

This is the vegetation area of the cultivation facility. This is where the plants live to help maximize their production before going to the flower room.

“In the flower room we have a canopy of 5,280 square feet, one plant per square foot, it will produce about 80 pounds a week,” Hunt said. “It’s a style of growing, perpetual harvesting, so we don’t grow an entire room and cut it all down, we take one row down a week.”

To date, the business has hired 15 employees. 90% are tribal members. Hunt expects to eventually have 75 to 100 employees.

Right now, the main focus is getting everything ready for Thursday.

“We are not exactly sure the amount of people that will be coming the day we open, but we anticipate that some of the inefficiencies in other medical programs in the area could lead people from other jurisdictions coming onto the reservation to purchase,” attorney general, Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe, Seth Pearman said.

Pearman says he believes it will be legal for anyone with a medical card on or after July 1 to purchase medical marijuana on the reservation and take it home with them.

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