ST. PAUL (AP) -- Twelve businesses have applied to grow and cultivate marijuana for the state's new medical marijuana program.

Friday's deadline for interested manufacturers kicks off weeks of weeding through applications before the state announces its two manufacturers on December 1st.

Applicants had to provide detailed plans for growing and converting the plants into medicine, lay out stringent security protocols and pay a $20,000, nonrefundable fee.

29 potential applicants previously expressed interest to the state.

Patients are expected to be able to get the medicine starting in July 2015.