Aberdeen’s first medical marijuana dispensary is open and ready to help customers.
Dakota Herb is at 3307 Seventh Ave. S.E., Suite 110. That’s on the east side of town in a strip mall near the Holiday Inn Express and Hampton Inn & Suites.
The business had a soft opening on April 18 and now has regular hours.
So far, business has been great, said Ryan DeFea, manager of the Aberdeen shop. Local residents with medical cannabis cards have been traveling a couple of hours to either Huron or Watertown to get products. Now, he said, Dakota Herb in Aberdeen can help those folks without the long drive.
The store offers a wide variety of products, including pre-rolled joints, buds, flowers, concentrates or “hash”, edibles, vapes and cartridges. It also sells CBD products, including treats for dogs, and apparel.
DeFea said most marijuana items are either sativa or indica.
Generally speaking, he said, sativa encourages cerebral activity and creativity. Indica, he said, is calming and helps people who have insomnia.
But the effects aren’t the same for everybody, he said.
Kathy Gonsor, Dakota Herb human resources manager, said most customers are seeking pain relief or help with insomnia.
Marijuana is different than it was 10 or 20 years ago let alone 40 years ago, DeFea said. The benefits medical cannabis offers some users is life-changing, he said.
While there are opponents of medical marijuana, it’s not as dangerous as people think and there is also some bad information available, he said.
Dakota Herb staff can help new customers with products
If anything, DeFea said, staff is going to undersell to customers. Workers don’t want people to spend money on a product that doesn’t work for them or results in a bad experience.
Staff will listen to patrons and walk them through possible options, Gonsor said.
Customers have to have a medical cannabis card to visit Dakota Herb. But for those who are curious, a complete list of products is on the store’s website, dakota-herb.com.
People who want to use medical cannabis need to get a card from a medical practitioner. DeFea said the list of conditions for which it can be used is relatively small in the state.
To learn more about cards, the industry or to find a practitioner who offers cards to those who qualify, DeFea said, The Cannabis Industry of South Dakota website is a good resource.
Everybody on the Dakota Herb staff goes through training to be budtender-certified, Gonsor said. That prepares workers for a career in the cannabis industry.
All cannabis products grown in South Dakota
All of Dakota Herb’s cannabis products are grown and manufactured in South Dakota, per state law. That makes for more certainty and consistency, DeFea said. Stores and customers are still determining what’s most popular and will be in highest demand, he said.
Dakota Herb has dispensaries in Huron, Brandon and Vermillion. There’s also a cultivation center in Brandon. Next for the company will be a growing/cultivation facility and dispensary under the same roof in south Sioux Falls near Tea, Gonsor said.
The hours of the Aberdeen store are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.