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Medical Marijuana Center Resumes Processing After Food-Safety Inspections

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TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) – One of Florida's largest medical marijuana treatment centers has resumed processing cannabis after meeting a food-safety inspection deadline, according to company officials.

The Miami Herald reported Thursday that Surterra halted its production of new items last week after it was notified that the state Department of Health was enforcing a provision requiring medical marijuana treatment centers to get third-party inspections.

The statute requires Good Manufacturing Process certification.

Devin Galetta from the Florida Department of Health released a statement:

"Surterra has communicated to the department their continued efforts to meet the Good Manufacturing Process certification, as required by statute, and has ceased processing at this time. Patients will continue to have access to existing medical marijuana inventory until Surterra has obtained the required certification."

Surterra operates eight locations around Florida. Only Trulieve has more locations with 15 dispensaries.

Late Thursday, Surterra spokeswoman Kim Hawkes released a statement to CBS4 saying it completed the required inspections.

"ASI Food Safety has completed Surterra's third-party inspections and we have received our required GMP certification, allowing us to resume production.  During this process, we maintained plenty of inventory on hand and experienced zero interruption to operations for our patients. Surterra is now fully compliant with all regulations set forth by the Florida Department of Health."

Many marijuana businesses ignored the inspection requirement, believing it was part of the state's guidelines on edible medical marijuana.

The Department of Health is still working on rules for edible marijuana.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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