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Comparing and Contrasting Medical Cannabis in Three Northern States

Written by Nicholas Demski

How the medical cannabis programs vary between Minnesota, Montana, and North Dakota.

You could go spelunking with your medical cannabis card in Minnesota. Deep below ground in a massive cave, you could see a waterfall, fossils, or even get married. Niagara Cave offers untold wonders to medicated travelers.

In Montana, one could get lost in Makoshika State Park and spend the day wondering at the marvels of the badlands.

In North Dakota, you could trawl through American history to see what life was like just a few centuries ago living in the same area.

There’s no end to what you can do once you have a medical cannabis card, as long as you follow the law.

Here, let’s take a look at the medical cannabis programs in Minnesota, Montana, and North Dakota.

The Varying Limitations on Medical Cannabis Access

Just because a state allows medical cannabis does not mean that patients have unfettered access to their medicine.

For example, in Minnesota, patients are allowed to have up to a 30-day supply of cannabis at any one time. However, their medicine is not allowed in forms that can be smoked. Vaporization, however, is allowed. Patients have access to both pre-filled cartridges and bulk supplies of oils for vaporizing.

Moreover, medical cannabis patients within Minnesota are not allowed to grow their own plants, nor can they use a caregiver.

Compare that to North Dakota where patients can get medical cannabis to smoke, but only if they have a recommendation from their physician.

Initially, it seemed that patients in North Dakota would be able to grow their own medical cannabis. However, the state legislature passed SB 2344 in 2017 which removed the provision that would have allowed for growing cannabis at home.

In North Dakota, in any 30-days, patients can possess:

  • 5 ounces of dried bud, and
  • 4,000 mg THC total from other products
  • Patients with cancer may be given up to 6 ounces of bud

On the other hand, patients in Montana can grow their own plants. In fact, they can grow up to four mature plants and four seedlings at any given time.

When it comes to products, Montana’s medical cannabis patients can possess:

  • One ounce of bud, or
  • Eight grams of concentrate, or
  • 800 mg of THC in infused products or edibles, or
  • Sixteen 0.5 mL cartridges, or
  • Eight 1 mL cartridges

Or combinations thereof using a formula provided by the state.

Every state’s medical cannabis laws are different, but patients in every one of those states can find some way to enjoy themselves to the fullest when they have access to medical cannabis in the wonderfully bizarre landscape just north and east of the badlands.

About the author

Nicholas Demski

Nicholas Demski's latest venture is He's a poet, author, cannabis writer, and budding entrepreneur. You can follow his travels with his daughter on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram @TheSingleDadNoma

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