NEW ORLEANS — Smokable, flower form of marijuana, is now legally being sold in Louisiana for medicinal use.
These new products are now being sold at nine dispensaries in the state, including H&W Dispensary in New Orleans.
“November of ’19 I had my knee replaced and the best way to get off of opioids was this,” one patient said. “For those of us of a certain age, its nostalgia. It hasn’t been messed with, it's natural, it hasn’t been processed or added to."
A new law legalized smokable marijuana in the state at the start of the year. Before, only tinctures, gummies, creams and non-smokable forms were sold.
“The stigma is going away and people are recognizing it’s a viable alternative to their therapy," Pharmacist Ruston Henry said.
H&W dispensary is the only one in New Orleans and Henry said he saw about 300 patients in his store on Monday, the first day smokable marijuana was available for sale.
“We knew flower was a more desirable dosage form,” Henry said.
“There’s probably twice as many people in here as there had been a month ago,” the patient we spoke with said.
Prices range across the state.
“The price is set by each dispensary,” Henry said.
At H&W, a gram costs $15 to $25.
“This is more expensive than any dispensary I've been to in the country,” the patient said.
Those prices are about twice the cost of some reported street prices.
“The street, you don’t know what you’re getting,” Henry said. “It could be herbicides, pesticides. This way, you are participating in a legal program and you’re getting from a reputable pharmacy.”
Henry said the smokable form is still cheaper than other forms of legal marijuana.
“Flower, since it’s so cheap to process it, it’s more affordable to patients,” Henry said.
Before going in, patients must have a physician recommendation to help with certain conditions including cancer, glaucoma or chronic pain.
Louisiana has two legal growers, the LSU AgCenter and Southern University AgCenter.