MJBizMag May-June 2023 - 38

Reimagining Retail
Hustle
Side
klahoma's
cannabis retailers
enjoyed booming
sales during the
first three years of the state's medical
marijuana program. But by late 2021,
sales had fallen off sharply, leaving
many store owners facing uncertain
futures.
Once-booming cannabis businesses
in one of the nation's most laissezfaire
marijuana markets saw sales
plateau because of oversaturation.
More recently, hopes for a recreational
rescue were dashed when Oklahoma
voters rejected an adult-use
legalization bill in March.
" There's just so much competition,
and rec didn't even pass, so we're all
hurting, " said Denise Mink, who owns
and operates the MedPharm dispensary
in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.
But MedPharm is hurting less than
its competitors, thanks in part to an
in-store bakery, where two self-named
" kitchen wenches " make infused goodies
such as cookies, cheesecakes and
award-winning Oreo Balls, all of which
customers can watch being prepared.
Sales from infused products made in
the kitchen, branded as the Pharmer's
Market, earn the dispensary about
$20,000 per month. That figure
doesn't include sales of Dope Drops,
an infused liquid additive that has
unexpectedly become such a hot seller
that MedPharm now sells Dope Drops
36 May-June 2023 | MJBizMagazine
wholesale to other stores as well as its
own customers.
" I'm so glad we (opened Pharmer's
Market) because it's provided a draw
that we wouldn't have otherwise. It's
been a big boost to our business, " Mink
said. " Our little bakery has almost a
cult following. People come over to say
hi to the girls in the kitchen and then
shop. It's been such a draw. It goes well
beyond that 20-grand a month. "
Getting there was no cakewalk,
however.
Regulations and Approval
After having the idea for a viewable,
in-store infused-goods bakery in 2019,
Mink started pursuing the concept in
2020.
The first steps involved getting a
processing license from the Oklahoma
Medical Marijuana Authority (OMMA),
approvals from local planning
and zoning departments as well as
approvals from local and state health
and safety departments, city boards
and other regulators.
Since the in-store bakery concept
had never been tried, Mink had lots
of questions for city and state officials
as well as regulators. But government
administrators hadn't dealt with these
questions before, so it often took a long
time to get answers.
" No one had really done anything
quite like what we were doing, " Mink
said. " We got inspected by everybody
- Denise Mink, MedPharm
Two years later, the inspections
continue. For example, a U.S. Food
and Drug Administration inspector
evaluates the kitchen facilities and
food products.
" They care about the eggs, the flour,
everything that goes into it, " Mink said,
explaining that the agency wants to
keep track of ingredients in case any
are recalled because of contamination
or some other problem.
She said it cost about $60,000 to
renovate and equip the kitchen,
including a $15,000 frying hood that
In-store infused
bakery keeps
Oklahoma
dispensary's
business cooking
By Omar Sacirbey
and their brother. Nobody knew what
to do, so they just made sure everybody
got involved. "
After MedPharm filed its first permit
and license applications, it took about
six months to open the store, said
Mink, who launched Pharmer's Market
on Jan. 1, 2021.
No one had
really done anything
quite like what we
were doing. We got
inspected
by everybody
and their brother.

MJBizMag May-June 2023

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of MJBizMag May-June 2023

MJBizMag May-June 2023 - 1
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