Legislators are urging Hochul to sign the Cannabis Crop Rescue Act, noting it is becoming an “agricultural emergency.”
The legislators said that because of the problems and delays that have plagued the launch of a legal, adult-use cannabis market, there are over 200 cannabis farmers and processors trying to sell their crops but only 23 state-licensed dispensaries open statewide. This has resulted in more than 250,000 pounds of unsold cannabis in storage and losing value by the day. More critically, they say, it has deprived farmers of the income they expected to recoup their costs.
Senate Agriculture Ranking Member George Borrello said, “The state’s failure to establish the legal market it promised has had consequences that have fallen the heaviest on cannabis farmers, the group that can least afford them. The farmers who leveraged all their assets to cultivate these crops are facing financial disaster without intervention by the state. Every week that passes makes their situation more desperate. While signing this bill into law is not a total solution, it will provide some immediate relief and let these farmers know that they aren’t forgotten.”