The state of Ohio has awarded a provisional processing license to cannabis grower and retailer Cresco Labs (CRLBF -2.79%). With the new permit, the company will be able to make and sell a wider range of offerings such as cannabis edibles and oils. At present, it only sells marijuana flower products in the state.
As Cresco explained in the press release trumpeting the new license, "our operations are now fully vertically integrated in Ohio. The expansion of our cultivation and production facility, along with the closing of four additional operating dispensaries, sets up an exciting year for Cresco Labs in Ohio in 2021."
The 25,000-square feet cultivation and production complex is located between the cities of Columbus and Dayton. These days, Cresco is its tenant, having sold the facility in a sale-leaseback deal to marijuana industry real estate investment trust Innovative Industrial Properties.
Cresco considers Ohio -- the seventh-most-populous state in the U.S. -- to be a "strategic state" for the growth of its operations. The company is already active in Illinois (the location of its headquarters) and Pennsylvania, which are No. 5 and No. 6, respectively, in terms of population.
Last month, Cresco reached a deal to purchase four dispensaries in Ohio from privately held Verdant Creations. That arrangement, which is subject to approval by the state, has not yet closed. Dispensary operators are allowed to own a maximum of five stores in Ohio.
Investors seem pleased by Cresco's latest news. On Monday, the company's shares rose by 3.7%, exceeding the gains of the wider stock market.