BORDENTOWN TOWNSHIP-- Curaleaf, a leading cannabis operator that grows, processes and sells cannabis through dispensaries throughout the United States, presented its proposal to the Bordentown Township Planning Board Thursday night to open a new medical marijuana dispensary on Route 130.

The Massachusetts-based company, which serves more than 350,000 registered patients in twenty-three states, already operates eighty-eight dispensaries around the country, including one in Bellmawr, Camden County. At Thursday night’s Planning Board meeting, they sought preliminary and final site plan approval to modify the existing building for their proposed medical marijuana dispensary in the Township.

The site is currently occupied by Stony Brook Sew and Vacuums, located at 191 Route 130 North. Under the proposed plan, the existing building would be modified for Curaleaf to operate in a one-story, 9,315 square foot structure.

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Curaleaf recently became the biggest cannabis company in the world by sales, with an expected annual revenue of about $1 billion.

Chris Melillo, Curaleaf’s Senior Vice President of Retail Operations, noted that the proposed Bordentown site would be for retail sales only, and that cultivation, manufacturing and packaging would not occur there. Curaleaf would continue to grow its product in the Bellmawr location. Stressing that the product delivered to the proposed Bordentown site would be completely secure, packaged and in final-sales format, he emphasized that Curaleaf meets and even exceeds standards of procedures set by the state of New Jersey.

In order to purchase cannabis from the dispensary, customers must be registered with the state’s Medical Marijuana Program (MMP). Melillo noted that the average customer in the Bellmawr location is over 50 years old and is a patient in the MMP program for one or more qualifying condition, mostly pain and sleep-related issues, which are interconnected.

No vote was taken on Thursday night. Discussion will resume at the September 10 meeting of the Planning Board at 7pm. Members of the public will be able to attend and participate via teleconference on the Zoom platform.

Curaleaf will submit any amended plans to the Township’s Community Development Office on or before August 31.

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