Bypassed medical marijuana producer sues state over data

Published 10:26 am Tuesday, January 5, 2016

ST. PAUL — A cannabis producer left out of Minnesota’s medical marijuana program is suing the state over the planned public release of information submitted as part of an unsuccessful bid.

Abatin Minnesota was established as a limited liability company in September 2014 for the sole purpose of bidding to be a medical marijuana manufacturer in the state. Abatin dissolved less than a year later after it wasn’t selected for the job. California-based BHC Group, a company closely aligned with Abatin in its Minnesota pursuit, filed the lawsuit late last month.

The company is seeking an injunction to stop posting of application information on the Health Department’s website on Jan. 22, as the agency has said will happen. The lawsuit, filed in Ramsey County District Court, also seeks unspecified damages and attorney fees.

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When the Health Department sought manufacturers following passage of a 2014 medical marijuana law, the agency asked for extensive information from companies bidding for state certification.