Most stoners know the feeling: The last bag is empty, the dealer's dry and there isn't a roach to be found. It's an emergency!
Well, that's basically the scenario in the entire state of Nevada right now. State voters legalized recreational weed at the polls last year and 47 retail outlets opened their doors about two weeks ago, seeing customers by the thousands stand in hours-long lines. The first four days alone of legalized weed in the Silver State saw $3 million in sales and $500,000 in tax revenue.
In short, pot was flying off the shelves. The only problem is that legal dispensaries can't restock, at least not without the help of licensed distributors. Under the regulatory framework hammered out by the state Legislature, only alcohol wholesalers are eligible to become licensed marijuana distributors — hey, it's Nevada, after all. At this point, not a single wholesale liquor dealer has finished the reportedly burdensome application process to receive a marijuana distribution license.
That leaves the state in kind of a sticky situation in which producers have weed and stores have customers, but there's no way to legally connect the two. It's kind of like when you were a teenager and couldn't find a friend to give you a ride to see your buddy who had extra dime bags for sale.
But unlike when you were a teenager, Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval seems totally unwilling to see all that weed go unsmoked and has signed a "statement of emergency" aimed at ensuring Nevadans can stay legally baked.
The statement allows the Legislature to craft emergency regulations temporarily easing distribution licensing requirements to ensure all that weed can get to market. But if you see this as some righteous move and paint Sandoval as the hip governor who showed up just in time to crank "Legalize It" up to 11 and smoke out an entire state, pump the brakes.
The move seems to have little to do with Sandoval, an espoused anti-pot Republican, having some empathy for the plight of the potless stoner. Instead, it seems far more likely he's concerned about the state losing a portion of the $100 million it projects in cannabis tax revenue, not to mention the prospect of hundreds of new industry employees losing jobs and the shuttering of nascent retail shops.
The Legislature is slated to take up the distributor licensing issue July 13.
If your minimalist, stoned hipster life is wanting for a simple way to consume marijuana and coffee at exactly the same time in single-serving batches, well, you're in luck.
The ever-growing cannabis retail industry was abuzz this week with news of the launch of Brewbudz, a company offering cannabis-infused K-cups that you can plop in your Keurig machines. The cups come in various dosage levels all the way up to ones with 50 milligrams of THC that a BuzzFeed reporter promises "will get you high AF."
The company is selling itself hard as an eco-conscious alternative to the average K-cup, some 14 billion of which are now sold annually. (Really, people? How hard is it to buy a reusable filter and brew a real cup of coffee?)
Brewbudz bills its cups as completely compostable, decomposing in "as little as five weeks" and boasts that its product is "good for you, good for the earth." The company's site somewhat laughably pledges its support of a "minimalist lifestyle" — what, after all, is more minimalist than a contraption that uses disposable cartridges to brew weed-infused coffee, one cup at a time?
Interestingly, though, for all the company's talk of its compostable cups, it says virtually nothing about where it sources its cannabis or its coffee. But, hey, it's not like marijuana and coffee are crops frequently grown with environmentally reprehensible agricultural practices, right? Right?
Thadeus Greenson is the news editor at the Journal. Reach him at 442-1400, extension 321, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @thadeusgreenson.
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