Minnesota: Marshall council finalizes hemp beverage amendment

MARSHALL — A proposal introduced last month to allow limited manufacturing of hemp-infused beverages in Marshall got final approval from the Marshall City Council on Tuesday. Council members voted in favor of an amendment to the city’s temporary moratorium on the manufacturing and sale of cannabis products.

“This (amendment) was first introduced on January 23, in response to a desire and some opportunities to allow the on-site sale of some of the lower-potency hemp edible products, and also the manufacture of a specific product at the brewery,” said Marshall City Attorney Pam Whitmore.

“This is just that short-term amendment to allow this opportunity,” Whitmore said. She said the council could expect to see additional regulations on cannabis products and registration in the future.

At the council’s last meeting, council members had voted in favor of introducing the amendment.

After studying the issue, Whitmore said allowing businesses like the Brau Brothers brewery to make limited runs of hemp-infused drinks didn’t pose a danger to the community.

Under the amended ordinance, producing lower-potency hemp beverages will be allowed at breweries or distilleries in Marshall, with some restrictions. The process of making the beverages can’t involve actual cannabis plants, and production of the hemp-infused beverages can’t account for more than half of the brewery’s output. Breweries also can’t sell growlers of hemp-infused drinks.

At the same time, the amendment also allows on-site sale and consumption of lower-potency cannabis products at Marshall businesses that have on-sale liquor licenses.

The council’s Legislative and Ordinance Committee recommended approval of the amendment, said council member Steven Meister.

“There was a lot of discussion, and this was the best idea that we came up with to propose to the council,” Meister said.

The council voted in favor of approving the amendment.


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