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Maine’s Office of Marijuana Policy is negotiating with a new potential vendor, Florida-based Metrc LLC, to provide "track and trace" services for the state's medical and adult-use cannabis market.
The arrangement comes after OMP and BioTrackTHC, the original recipient of the contract, agreed to terminate it, citing the company's inability to meet the deal's requirements, according to a news release.
Following a competitive procurement, OMP in May awarded the track-and-trace contract to BioTrack, also based in Florida, and agreed to use the company's cloud-based software to track the growth and distribution of marijuana and marijuana products in Maine. BioTrack's bid was one of six received for the contract.
BioTrack failed to deliver requirements of the contract, including a user portal that was scheduled to launch Oct. 1, the Office of Marijuana Policy said.
OMP said it remains dedicated to ensuring the timely rollout of the adult-use marijuana program and does not anticipate any major setbacks because of the transition.
“Although unfortunate, the move to terminate the contract was necessary to ensure that the state of Maine can proceed in a timely manner with the rollout of its adult use marijuana program,” OMP Director Erik Gundersen said in the release.
“BioTrackTHC worked with OMP to try to meet the contractual, statutory and regulatory needs of our office. Despite their best efforts, it became clear they could not meet the short- and long-term requirements.”
BioTrackTHC Chief Operating Officer Moe Afaneh said in the release, "BioTrack appreciates the opportunity to have worked in partnership with the Maine Office of Marijuana Policy. We will continue to support the Maine industry as a whole through our other products. BioTrack remains committed to serving the cannabis community."
Under Maine procurement regulations, OMP has signed a letter of intent with the runner-up in the original bid, Metrc. More information about the agreement will be made available when a contract is executed, according to the release.
“Our team is ready to get started and support the successful launch of retail sales this spring,” Metrc CEO Jeff Wells said in the release. “We look forward to partnering with the OMP and licensed community to meet this landmark goal in 2020.”
OMP said it plans to first implement the track-and-trace system in the adult-use program, and will announce details of the schedule soon.
The Mills administration created OMP in February. The office is responsible for the oversight of all aspects of legalized marijuana, including Maine's existing medical-use marijuana program
The value of Maine’s medical and recreational marijuana market could be nearly $300 million by 2025, according to Portland-based Nucleus One Consulting, a cannabis advisory firm.
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