People strolling along Atlantic City's boardwalk can now see something that's never been there before -- a marijuana dispensary. Acreage Holdings (ACRGF) announced on Tuesday it has opened The Botanist by Compassionate Care Foundation, the New Jersey municipality's first retail cannabis store.
The dispensary actually opened for business on Saturday in a ceremony that was attended by local dignitaries. As per New Jersey law, it can only sell medical marijuana to qualified patients; recreational cannabis is still outlawed in the state.
The Botanist is an upscale dispensary and product brand, and the Atlantic City branch is designed to be reminiscent of an old-fashioned botanist's laboratory. It features a green foliage wall, a "Seed Bar" where consumers can get educated about marijuana and the various options available, and a private consultation room.
Acreage operates the store in partnership with a local nonprofit organization, the Compassionate Care Foundation (CCF) -- hence its rather long-winded name. Last year, the two entities agreed that CCF would become an Acreage subsidiary; that deal is still pending final regulatory approval.
The opening of The Botanist by Compassionate Care Foundation brings the number of operational dispensaries Acreage either manages, consults or provides other services for, to 31 across 12 states. Of those, 13 carry The Botanist brand name in some form.
Acreage will be acquired by peer marijuana company Canopy Growth (CGC 10.36%) if and when marijuana is legalized in the U.S. at the federal level. Canopy Growth agreed to pay $3.4 billion for Acreage in April 2019.
On Tuesday afternoon, shares of both Acreage and Canopy Growth were down, the former by 2% and the latter by slightly more than 3%.