The Big Freak-Out Over Oregon’s Marijuana Surplus

The Big Freak-Out Over Oregon’s Marijuana Surplus

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: The Big Freak-Out Over Oregon’s Marijuana Surplus

[Canniseur: Markets develop and evolve. IMHO, Oregon is doing their growing right. OK, there’s a surplus. A huge surplus. If some of the growers thrive, it will probably be because their product is superior. Perhaps not, but eventually a market rewards those who can grow the best cannabis or make the best concentrates or whatever. It rewards them with higher prices than commercial grow or extraction enterprises because they’re creating better product. People will pay more for the best…if it’s better.]

By now many of you have heard the devastating news: There’s too much marijuana in Oregon. Perhaps I should have told you to sit down first; for those who fainted after reading that sentence, my apologies.

All jokes aside, this is apparently a huge deal. State authorities put the surplus from last year’s harvest alone in excess of 2 million pounds of marijuana. With supply outpacing demand in the state, prices have plummeted, putting many businesses in the cross-hairs of failure.

The plan to rectify this is to cap the number of cultivation licenses. But the worry among state officials is that much of the surplus marijuana will end up on the black market out of state, where is can bring higher prices.

Under market conditions, much of the surplus would flow out of state, to areas where supply is not quite meeting demand. Some growers would go out of business and some would survive as the market continuously pushed toward equilibrium of supply and demand. But here we hit a problem that most legal products don’t face: Oregon growers can’t legally sell their product out of state.

This fact alone dictates much of what happens next. Faced with financial destitution, most growers will run the risk of selling their product illegally to other states. This is a big no-no in the eyes of the feds, something state officials in Oregon live in fear of.

So while the best solution – interstate commerce – is forbidden, the state will try to adjust the supply of marijuana relative to demand within the state while cracking down on the black market, i.e. prohibition.

Oregon is home to slightly more than 1% of the United States’ total population. This means that growers there are legally barred from selling their product to roughly 99% of the market. Will many fail under those conditions? Absolutely. How many growers in Oregon will turn to the illegal market? How many will get busted? How many lives and families will be destroyed?

While impressive in many respects, the rollout of legalization across the U.S. has been haphazard and incredibly inefficient. How much investment has been wasted because the legal cannabis market in the U.S. follows no logical sense?

Government is not the solution to this “problem”. The federal government needs to get out of the business of marijuana prohibition and let the legal cannabis market develop like every other legal market.

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: The Big Freak-Out Over Oregon’s Marijuana Surplus

The Future of Cannabis Consumption

The Future of Cannabis Consumption

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: The Future of Cannabis Consumption

[Canniseur: Smoke filled rooms of stoners is the first image that comes to mind. It’s not going to be a reefer smoke filled room when it happens. The coffee shops I visited in Amsterdam were like that. I believe social consumption will actually make it to many of the adult use states. We can consume alcohol in a bar, why should cannabis not be allowed in a social setting as well? A bar is a social setting. I’d put money on the idea there wouldn’t be as much fighting and violence problems with social cannabis.]

Recreational cannabis consumption is legal in 10 states in the United States as well as all across Canada for adults of a certain age. However, unlike other recreational choices like alcohol, in many places, there is no place for adults to socially consume cannabis together. This leaves tourists high and dry when it comes to a place to consume legal recreational cannabis.

The topic of cannabis consumption within the community and industry is an elevated one. For this article, I had the opportunity to talk to the founder of Top Shelf Budtending and a leader in the field of social consumption and cannabis, Andrew Mieure. Andrew has been very outspoken and a leader in the movement to legalize social cannabis consumption in the states. Last month Andrew celebrated as Las Vegas approved social cannabis consumption clubs. Some of the few other places within the United States where social cannabis consumption clubs exist are in within West Hollywood and various cities in California.

So, what is next for social consumption in the US and around the world? Will there one day be cannabis clubs in every state where consumers can partake with likeminded individuals? Find out more below in the Q&A with Andrew Mieure of Top Shelf Budtending.

Where do you see social consumption heading in the coming months and years?

Oh man, that’s a complex question.  I’ll answer it in a few parts. As it stands, much of the legislation surrounding social consumption has been focused on adding lounge models to existing adult-use models. For example, Colorado attempting to add a statewide hospitality bill and the million changes that California cities made to their consumption ordinances.

Within the coming months, I foresee existing social consumption models being built upon and developed further.  Places like West Hollywood have licenses and will launch this year, giving us a proper taste of what detached lounges will feel like in a more free form environment. Beyond West Hollywood, markets like Colorado, Nevada, Massachusetts and Alaska will attempt to finalize legislation and add-on social consumption ordinances to their existing adult-use models.  Within the next few years I expect lounges/social use venues to become the next industry gold rush.

Once the legislation passes and the groundwork is laid, major investment will arrive, operators will begin to open and these businesses will be able to thrive as intended. Even further down the line, I predict we will be creating major destinations for consumption. As a Las Vegas resident myself, Its only natural to dream of the biggest, most ridiculous lounge models we can think up. Within 5-10 years is where I think we will really see these come to fruition.

Aside from the social use venues opening themselves, I predict we will see a new wave of standards and requirements within the venues themselves.  Things like DUI/OVI prevention, consumption safety practices and sanitation protocols are top of mind.  Not to mention, the shift from handing someone a joint to a full blown cannabis hospitality with A—Z services like bottle service, valet and personal shoppers.  Our future is very exciting.

What are the biggest obstacles that need to be faced for cannabis to be as socially acceptable as alcohol?

Right now, the biggest obstacles the cannabis industry is faced with in regards to being treated like alcohol are complex and multi-faceted.  First off, cannabis is federally illegal [in the United States], alcohol does not have the same restrictions. Folks are afraid of being arrested for their choice of intoxicant. This, in my opinion, is what holds cannabis back from being a as socially accepted.

The other side is a little more… hazy.  So when we smoke or vaporize cannabis it creates smoke and vapor. Smoke/vapor does not stay in one place and can invade the airspace of other individuals near where the consumption is taking place. With a drink, it stays in your cup, and only you get the effects when you consume it, liquids don’t travel through the air.

DUI detection and impairment while driving are two more major issues that cannabis needs to tackle before it can be as accepted as alcohol.  Without reasonable rules set in place for responsible consumption, we are still sitting at square one.

Semantics and methods of ingestion aside, I believe cannabis is gaining the acceptance it deserves. My whole life has been centered around bringing cannabis to the mainstream. I have been very keen on making sure that we play nice with existing hospitality and alcohol-forward business in order to create a smooth transition into the mainstream spotlight. All in all, I believe cannabis is here to stay within our small social circles and the mainstream.  If we remain patient and vigilant, the future of social consumption will be grander than we could have ever imagined.

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: The Future of Cannabis Consumption

Pot Owners Plead Guilty in Unique Charges vs. Legal Business

Pot Owners Plead Guilty in Unique Charges vs. Legal Business

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: Pot Owners Plead Guilty in Unique Charges vs. Legal Business

[Editor’s Note: This won’t be the last fraud case in the legal cannabis industry. This serves as a warning to cannabis dispensaries to stay on the right side of the law.]

The owners of a Denver marijuana business pleaded guilty Friday to drug and racketeering charges and will spend a year in prison in what city officials called the first local prosecution of a legal pot enterprise in the U.S.

A yearlong investigation of Sweet Leaf’s sales practices centred on a practice known as “looping,” where a customer purchases the maximum amount of marijuana that Colorado law permits and repeatedly returns to the same retailer to purchase more on the same day. Prosecutors believe people using the strategy at Sweet Leaf locations purchased more than 2 tons of marijuana intended for sale on the black market.

The case is unique in that Denver authorities charged a pot business in one of 10 states plus Washington, D.C., that broadly allow marijuana use by adults and a commercial market to supply cannabis products. The majority of such businesses “are reputable and responsible and strive to obey our marijuana laws,” Denver District Attorney Beth McCann said in a statement.

“Sweet Leaf is an exception,” she said.

Under a plea agreement, Matthew Aiken, Christian Johnson and Anthony Sauro will serve one year in prison followed by a year of parole tied to the drug charge and a year of probation for the racketeering charge.

Aiken, 40, was sentenced immediately, and courtroom deputies placed him in handcuffs following the hearing. Johnson, 50, and Sauro, 33, will be sentenced in several weeks.

They and their attorneys left the courtroom without speaking to reporters.

Senior Deputy District Attorney Kenneth Boyd said investigators found evidence that Sweet Leaf’s owners knew about and encouraged the illegal sales. Employees would even contact buyers known as “loopers” to notify them of medical marijuana deliveries to dispensaries, he said.

“Once the practice was authorized by ownership, it was pushed at the highest levels,” Boyd said. “It was sell, sell, sell. This was about greed and making money, and that came from the top.”

Denver police began investigating the chain of dispensaries in 2016 after a neighbour of one Sweet Leaf location complained about repeat customers visiting the dispensary day after day.

Investigators scrutinized Sweet Leaf’s sales practices by using data collected by state regulators and material collected during December 2017 raids of several company properties. Several months earlier, the company’s owners told Marijuana Business Magazine that they had 350 employees and $60 million in revenue.

Boyd said the 12 low-level employees arrested during the raids have since reached plea agreements contingent on community service. Two former managers received 30-day jail sentences in November as part of a plea agreement that required them to co-operate with investigators.

Boyd said Denver prosecutors still are pursuing cases against 10 people accused of using looping to buy excess marijuana at Sweet Leaf locations.

The investigation prompted Colorado regulators last year to clarify rules limiting how much marijuana an individual customer can buy in one day.

Attorneys for the company’s owners had argued that the rules only limited the amount of product a customer could buy during a single sales transaction. City and state regulators rejected that argument, and Denver revoked all 26 of the company’s city-issued licenses after the police investigation began.

Colorado regulators later reached a settlement requiring the owners to surrender all of their state-issued business licenses. The deal also bans the owners from working in Colorado’s marijuana industry for 15 years.

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: Pot Owners Plead Guilty in Unique Charges vs. Legal Business

First Marijuana Recall Issued for Michigan

First Marijuana Recall Issued for Michigan

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: First Marijuana Recall Issued for Michigan

[Editor’s Note: Attention lower Michigan medical cannabis patients. Patches and tinctures have been recalled. Find out if your medicine is part of this recall.]

The Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) has issued a voluntary recall on marijuana products.

According to LARA, the recall includes non-laboratory tested marijuana products that were supplied to provisioning centers by Choice Labs, LLC in Jackson. Patients or caregivers who have these affected medical marijuana products in their possession are advised to return them to the provisioning center from which they were purchased for proper disposal. During the recall, provisioning centers are encouraged to notify patients or caregivers that purchased these medical marijuana products of the recall.

LARA said Choice Labs will dispose of or retest the recalled medical marijuana products. All affected medical marijuana has a label affixed to the container that, at a minimum, indicates the license number of the marijuana facility that manufactured the marijuana product, as well as the production batch number assigned to the marijuana product, said LARA.

This recall affects the following batches under Processor License PR-000005:

  • 1A4050100000900000000035
  • 1A4050100000900000000046
  • 1A4050100000900000000064
  • 1A4050100000900000000073
  • 1A4050100000900000000075
  • 1A4050100000900000000077
  • 1A4050100000900000000138
  • 1A4050100000900000000164
  • 1A4050100000900000000167
  • 1A4050100000900000000340
  • 1A4050100000900000000339

The following products sent to the provisioning centers listed are subjects to the recall:

Mary’s Transdermal Indica Patches

  • 5 & Dime
  • Compassionate Care by Design
  • Om of Medicine
  • 3843 Euclid, LLC – Dispo
  • Montrowe, LLC – Greenhaus
  • Exclusive PR Center
  • Bloom City Club
  • Cannarbor, Inc – Arbors Wellness
  • Five Star Relief, Inc.
  • Green Skies – Far West, LLC
  • Green Skies – Hoover, LLC
  • Green Skies – Healing Tree, LLC
  • Utopia Gardens, LCC
  • Choice Labs – Ann Arbor Rd
  • The Green Mile Detroit

The Remedy Tincture-Mary’s

  • Bigfoot Wellness
  • 5 & Dime
  • Five Star Relief, Inc.
  • Choice Labs – Ann Arbor Rd
  • Choice Labs – Page Ave
  • 3843 Euclid, LLC – Dispo
  • 3843 Euclid, LLC – Dispo
  • Om of Medicine, LLC
  • Green Skies – Far West, LLC
  • Compassionate Care by Design
  • Green Skies – Healing Tree, LLC
  • Cannarbor, Inc – Arbors Wellness
  • Bloom City Club

Mary’s Transdermal Patches CBD

  • Montrowe, LLC – Greenhaus
  • 5 & Dime
  • Compassionate Care by Design
  • Om of Medicine, LLC
  • 3843 Euclid, LLC – Dispo
  • Exclusive PR Center
  • Bloom City Club
  • Green Skies – Far West, LLC
  • Green Skies – Hoover, LLC
  • Green Skies – Healing Tree, LLC
  • Utopia Gardens, LCC
  • The Green Mile Detroit
  • Cannarbor, Inc – Arbors Wellness

The Coltyn 1:1 Tincture

  • 5 & Dime
  • Five Star Relief, Inc
  • Choice Labs – Ann Arbor Rd
  • Choice Labs – Page Ave
  • 3843 Euclid, LLC – Dispo
  • Utopia Gardens, LCC
  • Exclusive PR Center
  • Green Skies – Far West, LLC
  • Green Skies – Hoover, LLC
  • Compassionate Care by Design
  • Bigfoot Wellness
  • Green Skies – Healing Tree, LLC
  • Bloom City Club
  • Cannarbor, Inc – Arbors Wellness
  • 5 & Dime

Mary’s Transdermal 1:1 Patches

  • Compassionate Care by Design
  • Om of Medicine, LLC
  • Exclusive PR Center
  • Bloom City Club
  • Five Star Relief, Inc
  • Green Skies – Far West, LLC
  • Green Skies – Hoover, LLC
  • Green Skies – Healing Tree, LLC
  • Cannarbor, Inc – Arbors Wellness

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: First Marijuana Recall Issued for Michigan

Oregon’s Marijuana Industry is Creating More Jobs than its Tech Sector

Oregon’s Marijuana Industry is Creating More Jobs than its Tech Sector

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: Oregon’s Marijuana Industry is Creating More Jobs than its Tech Sector

Ed. Note: Portland is a hotbed of tech right now and cannabis is hiring more people. Not everyone who works in a cannabis shop is a techie, nor is everyone who works in a cannabis shop a stoner.

Oregon’s marijuana industry is adding more jobs to the economy than the state’s tech industry, albeit at a lower average wage rate.

Since 2007 – the beginning of the Great Recession – the economy of Oregon has added more jobs via the alcohol and marijuana industries than its popular technology sector, according to the state’s Office of Economic Analysis (OEA).

While the average wage for tech workers is still significantly higher than for alcohol or cannabis workers, the data underscores the state’s thriving alcohol and emerging cannabis sectors. Oregon state economist Josh Lehner noted that tech workers in the state earn three times higher than employees within the marijuana and alcohol sectors.

Oregon’s alcohol industry continues to boom in the state primarily because of the development of a cluster of brewery system manufacturers.

“So when a new brewery opens up elsewhere in the country, there is a good probability they are buying and using Oregon-made equipment,” said OEA’s Josh Lehner.

While the alcohol/weed and tech industries are not related or comparable in any form, their different abilities to create jobs is a talking point for further economic discussions. Lehner hopes that the marijuana industry in Oregon will develop like the state’s alcohol industry – into a cluster as well and similarly become a source for the national marijuana industry.

“Prices continue to plunge as the market matures and marijuana commoditizes,” Lehner revealed. “But increasing market activity in extracting oils, creating creams, making edibles in addition to hopefully building up the broader cluster of lab testing equipment, and branding and design firms, means Oregon will see a bigger economic impact from legalization.”

OEA’s employment data shows there are between 11,000 to 12,000 marijuana-related jobs in Oregon at the moment.

Original Post: 420 Intel Business: Oregon’s Marijuana Industry is Creating More Jobs than its Tech Sector

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