Mass. cannabis manufacturer expands into R.I.

ANGELA BROWN is the co-founder and CEO of Massachusetts-based Coast Cannabis Co, which is expanding into Rhode Island. / COURTESY CHATTERBOSS COMMUNICATIONS

WARWICK – Rhode Islanders may already be familiar with Coast Cannabis Co. if they’ve crossed state borders for cannabis dispensaries. Soon, those products will also be available in Rhode Island.

Working in partnership with Warwick-based Aquidneck Harvest Company, Coast will soon establish itself in the Ocean State through a new facility within the Aquidneck Harvest headquarters at 38 Lockhart Ave. in Warwick.

Coast launched in 2017 as the first independent cannabis product manufacturer in the eastern United States, producing chocolates, gummies and vaporizers. The company focuses on using all-natural, organic and ethically sourced ingredients in its products, which co-founder and CEO Angela Brown saw as an often overlooked set of values in the market.

While Coast is one of the older players in a young market, the Rhode Island expansion will mark the company’s first venture outside of Massachusetts borders. In the Bay State, Coast’s products are currently sold through more than 200 dispensaries.

The out-of-state expansion has required some adaptations to varying policies between Massachusetts and Rhode Island, Brown said, such as adhering to different packaging regulations. 

Most notably for Coast, current Rhode Island regulations require cannabis product packaging to be “neutral in color,” and cannot contain any design elements that weren’t approved by the Office of Cannabis Regulation.

“That has been very challenging, because we love color at Coast,” Brown said, with the company using it for decorative and organizational purposes. “We had to step back and totally revamp, remove the color, some of our (images) on the packages in Massachusetts do not fall into the regulations here in Rhode Island.” 

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With Coast products already available in nearby Massachusetts communities, Brown hopes the expansion will help the company reach a new market while also providing easier access to existing customers.

“We’re hopeful that we’re going to make a lot of people excited that they no longer have to come to Massachusetts to get their Coast cannabis products,” Brown said. 

Jacquelyn Voghel is a PBN staff writer. You may reach her at [email protected].

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