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Benton County dispensary overtakes local provider in sales

by David Showers | February 22, 2021 at 4:00 a.m.
A sign at Green Springs Medical Marijuana Dispensary, 309 Seneca St., asks customers to keep a safe distance from the counter in March. -Photo by Grace Brown of The Sentinel-Record

A Benton County dispensary has overtaken Hot Springs' licensed medical marijuana provider in overall sales, according to the latest sales report the state revenue agency released Thursday.

The ReLeaf Center in Bentonville has led seven of the last eight reports, including the 36-day reporting period that ended Tuesday. It reported 379.35 pounds in sales, raising its total sales close to 4,000 pounds and displacing Green Springs Medical in Hot Springs as the top seller.

The ReLeaf Center opened three months after Green Springs but began making inroads on the latter's sales lead last year. The 132.03 pounds in sales Green Springs reported for the period that ended Tuesday ranked 11th out of the 32 dispensaries in operation. It finished 12th during the four previous reporting periods.

Green Springs CEO Dragan Vicentic is suing three of the growers licensed to cultivate medical marijuana in Arkansas. The complaint he filed last month in Garland County Circuit Court alleged unfair trade practices he said have cost his business $5 million, claiming growers have refused to sell to Green Springs after Vicentic told the state Medical Marijuana Commission they couldn't keep up with patient demand.

The defendants, which include the Medical Marijuana Commission, Alcoholic Beverage Control and state revenue agency, have yet to file a response. Division 3 Circuit Judge Lynn Williams granted the state defendants an extension earlier this month, giving them until March 26 to respond.

Suite 443, Garland County's other licensed dispensary that is located outside the city limits, ranked third in the latest sales report, reporting 263 pounds sold. It's ranked third, fifth, fifth and third in the four previous reports. Natural Relief in Sherwood ranked second, reporting 303.02 pounds sold. Plant Family Therapeutics in Mountain Home ranked fourth, reporting 240.87 pounds sold.

The Tax Procedure Act prohibits the state from releasing revenue figures for individual dispensaries. In aggregate, they have reported more than $242 million in sales on more than 36,000 pounds sold since the first legal sale of the drug in Arkansas in May 2019.

The Department of Finance and Administration said six more license holders are in the process of opening. The Medical Marijuana Commission has awarded 38 of the 40 licenses permitted by the state constitutional amendment voters approved in 2016.


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