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The Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission approved licenses for two testing labs, a crucial step that moves retail pot shops an inch closer to opening. 

State regulators yesterday gave the green light for two marijuana testing facilities — CDX Analytics of Salem and MCR Labs of Framingham — to begin testing cannabis products that consumers could soon get in their hands.

“We’re excited to get ready,” said Michael Kahn, founder of MCR Labs. “Our lab will be testing the potency and contaminants from the samples we receive from adult-use establishments for mold to pesticide to metals.”

Legal marijuana sales are “getting really close” in Massachusetts, said Steven Hoffman, the chairman of the Cannabis Control Commission. “I have no specific date.” 

The oversight board’s approval is a crucial link in the recreational marijuana supply chain because state law requires all cannabis products be independently tested for potency and possible contaminants before they’re sold. The absence of approved labs had delayed the rollout of recreational marijuana sales, which had been targeted to begin July 1. 

Despite retail woes, adults in Massachusetts have been able to grow and use marijuana since December 2016, after voters approved a ballot initiative to legalize the drug in November 2016. While the approval means that testing of products can begin, Hoffman said it will be “some time” before residents can walk into a store and buy pot. 

The commission also approved six more provisional licenses at the meeting —  three for retail, three for cultivation and two for product manufacturing. 

In yesterday's meeting, commissioners discussed home delivery options of cannabis products, a topic that was tabled in February. CCC executive director Shawn Collins said the commission is researching how other states, such as California, New Jersey, Washington and Oregon, are implementing delivery systems for alcohol and marijuana products.

“It’s easier to do something right the first time,” Commissioner Shaleen Title said. “Keep it small first and tie it to a brick-and-mortar location.”

— jonathan.ng@bostonherald.com