Meet the top 11 power players shaping Arizona’s new market for recreational marijuana, including executives, advocates, and regulators

  • Arizona voted to legalize adult-use, or recreational cannabis, on November 3.
  • Its new market could reach $790 million in annual sales by 2024, according to Marijuana Business Daily.
  • Recreational sales are expected to happen relatively quickly, likely sometime in 2021, and there are key power players to track as the program gets set up.
  • They range from lawyers to company executives to advocates in the state, who have all had a hand in bringing recreational cannabis to Arizona.
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Arizona’s new adult-use cannabis program is expected to roll out fairly quickly.

And core power players — who range from attorneys to company executives to advocates — had a big hand in crafting the bill’s details. Many of these same people will have a hand in shaping the program further as it readies itself to begin in the next few months and develops further in the coming years.

Read more: Arizona just legalized recreational cannabis, opening the door to a $790 million market for major marijuana firms

Many of the biggest names to watch are members of or otherwise associated with the Arizona Dispensaries Association (ADA), an industry group that includes big national cannabis firms like Harvest Health & Recreation and Curaleaf. 

The association is in large part responsible for bankrolling the campaign to legalize recreational cannabis in Arizona, and for drafting the language of the bill itself. Currently, around 80% of the 125 or so operating dispensaries in the state are members of ADA, according to Sam Richard, the director of the association.

Companies currently involved in Arizona’s medical cannabis market can submit applications to sell to the state’s recreational customers as early as January 19, 2021. From that point, the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) will have to respond to the application within 60 days. ADHS currently oversees the state’s medical marijuana program and will also be responsible for its recreational program.

Sales could begin as early as late March or early April, according to this timeline. ADHS is required to lay out the state’s adult-use cannabis regulations on or before April 5, 2021, according to Proposition 207.

Read more: The ultimate guide to marijuana legalization: Here are all the states that passed cannabis reform, the key dates to know, and which stocks could benefit the most.

Arizona has already seen a flurry of activity since the state voted to legalize recreational cannabis earlier this month, as companies eye the new market.

Already, multi-state operator Ayr Strategies and Arizona-based Copperstate Farms announced acquisitions to enter or expand in the state. Other giants like Harvest and Curaleaf, which already have heavy footprints in Arizona, have also announced construction and hiring expansion plans to prepare for the new market.

Business insider reached out to people involved in the campaign and other notable actors in the space and asked them who should be included on this list.

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