Valley Wellness is celebrating the grand opening of the first medical cannabis dispensary in Somerset County.
Located at 407 Route 202 in Raritan, Valley Wellness will begin welcoming customers Dec. 9 following an 11:30 a.m. ribbon-cutting event.
Founded by West Windsor native Sarah Trent, the dispensary is a woman business owned enterprise (WBOE), as well as one of the state’s few dispensaries not run by a multistate operator (MSO).
According to Trent, Valley Wellness aims to offer a range of medical cannabis products available in various forms, such as flower, vape cartridges, lotions, concentrates and tinctures.
The dispensary will also have a pharmacist on staff to assist patients, by appointment, with questions on ingestion methods and dosing as well as understanding the various properties associated with various strains carried by Valley Wellness.
Once Trent’s application for a provisional permit from the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission (CRC) was approved in December 2021, she began working to transform a 2,500-square-foot space in the building shared by longtime local retailer Uneeda Appliance into Valley Wellness.
Though New Jersey has 29 medical cannabis dispensaries registered with the CRC, Raritan River Valley-area patients still “have to travel quite a distance to access medical cannabis,” said Trent, an attorney and former public defender with the Legal Aid Society.
She went on to say, “We are pleased to be able to provide those who seek relief through cannabis a place much closer to home.”
As part of a commitment to promote “the responsible use of cannabis” and “create an educated workforce” in the budding industry, Trent founded NJ Cannabis Certified, a 15-hour educational certificate program taught in conjunction with eight community colleges across the state. Since its launch in March 2020, more than 1,000 students have completed the course.
Valley Wellness will be open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.