Michigan Native American Tribe Announces Retail Partnership With Cannabis Company

The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians has partnered up with Lume Cannabis.
Michigan Native American Tribe Announces Retail Partnership With Cannabis Company

The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians announced on Friday that it has reached an agreement with vertically-integrated Lume Cannabis Co. to open a retail cannabis dispensary on tribal land in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Joel Schultz, the Sault Tribe Economic Development executive director, said in a press release that the partnership has been awarded a license to operate an adult-use cannabis retailer on its tribal lands near the Canadian border.

“We are honored to work with the top cannabis operator in Michigan to bring high-quality cannabis products to medical patients and adult-use consumers who live in or visit Sault Ste. Marie and the Eastern Upper Peninsula area,” he said. “The Sault Tribe is working progressively to diversify economic development to enhance revenues to expand services to Sault Tribe Members. Lume has the expertise, passion, values, and philosophy that make them the ideal company to work with to bring recreational cannabis to Sault Ste. Marie.”

Under the retail partnership, Lume will offer more than 20 strains of cannabis flower as well as vape cartridges, pre-rolls, edibles, and a line of CBD products to members of the largest Native American tribe east of the Mississippi and visitors to the community.

“We are excited about our partnership with the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians and pleased to announce we’ve received an adult-use marijuana retail license to open our newest Lume location,” said Doug Hellyar, president and COO of Lume. “We look forward to introducing our high-quality cannabis products to adult-use customers and medical patients aged 21 and up with a valid medical card in Sault Ste. Marie and the surrounding communities.

Economic Opportunity For Indigenous Communities

Under the new partnership, Lume plans to open five additional retail cannabis stores on tribal land over the next two years. Lume, based in Troy, Michigan, currently operates 10 adult-use marijuana dispensaries in the state.

“This is a big moment for our tribe for the opportunities it represents. Until now, we have been on the outside of this thriving industry and we look forward to working with Lume to help Michiganders experience the numerous health, wellness, and other benefits of Lume’s high-quality cannabis products,” Schultz said.

All of Lume’s cannabis flower is grown at its cultivation facility in Evart, Michigan. 

“Our newest partnership with the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians will take our operations to the next level and establish us as the state’s go-to source for all things cannabis, including our commitment to educating our customers and making it as convenient as possible for them to access the best, safest products to meet their individual needs,” Hellyar said.

Lume also has a partnership with the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians that is bringing retail cannabis shops to tribal trust lands in Petoskey and Mackinaw City, Michigan. Mackinaw City village manager Patrick Wyman said that while the township had decided to opt out of retail cannabis commerce, the local government has no control over the site.

“Once it becomes in trust, it becomes a sovereign area within our village limits which means they do not have to comply with any of our ordinances or restrictions or anything like that,” Wyman said, adding that the village has a fairly positive relationship with the tribe.

“They are allowed to do what they want and we understand that,” Wyman said.

Lume also has plans to open stores in Bay City, Cheboygan, and five other Michigan communities.

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