The team at Drizly, a Boston-based alcohol e-commerce marketplace, has launched a new company to deliver marijuana.
Lantern is the first on-demand cannabis e-commerce company in Massachusetts, according to a news release. While it was started by the team at Drizly, the two companies are separate.
The company is starting with delivery of cannabis to certified medical patients in Greater Boston, the news release said. Recreational marijuana shops are not yet able to offer delivery — though that licensure option will soon be available through the Cannabis Control Commission — and are currently not operating amid the COVID-19 pandemic per an order halting businesses considered non-essential by Gov. Charlie Baker.
Orders on Lantern will initially go through Revolutionary Clinics, which operates medical marijuana dispensaries in Cambridge and Somerville.
Meanwhile, discussions are underway with other licensed dispensaries as Lantern looks to serve patients throughout Greater Boston, Massachusetts and the nation, according to the press release.
“Lantern is uniquely equipped to bring the long-sought discretion and convenience of online ordering and home delivery of cannabis to patients in Massachusetts, and to evolve as regulations evolve,” said Meredith Mahoney, the president of Lantern. “We launch today with an intuitive digital experience focused on delivering high quality products at the best prices within an hour.”
Mahoney said Lantern is gearing up for recreational e-commerce and delivery once the regulations are in place.
Lantern works with medical dispensaries to bring their full inventories online and was developed to assist patients in finding products through simple navigation, step-by-step questionnaires and testing data, the news release read.
While Lantern is a separate entity from Drizly, “it will apply the same rigor and strict compliance to cannabis regulations that Drizly is known for in alcohol commerce—first offering the service to medical cannabis patients, and eventually, to recreational consumers of legal age,” the news release read.
Patients can make a Lantern account by going online and entering a state-issued medical cannabis prescription number. That will give patients access to product listings for licensed dispensaries in the patients’ area.
“Over time, the platform will offer increasingly personalized product suggestions based on each individual’s preferences,” the news release read. “Delivery is handled by trained dispensary personnel who accept debit cards or cash and require a state-issued medical marijuana card and photo ID at the point of delivery.”
Currently, only medical marijuana companies can deliver in Massachusetts. The Cannabis Control Commission has a meeting scheduled Thursday and a vote on delivery is on the meeting agenda.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Drizly has reportedly seen sales surge 485% through mid-April, with customers stuck at home and opting in for delivery services.