Will Medical Marijuana survive the storm of legalization?

Ever since recreational legalization was on the table, many activists and patients have whispered behind the scenes: Rec will be the death knell for medical cannabis.

Before diving in, let's clear the air. There really is no difference — physically, chemically, or otherwise — between a marijuana plant grown for medical use or one grown for recreational/adult use. They're both the same plant. The distinction between the two is largely legal — and economic.


Will Washington ever legalize marijuana home grows?

Washington state is a West Coast cannabis state. By this, we mean cannabis users have for a number of years in Washington enjoyed expansive rights compared to other states in the U.S., even compared the newly legal eastern states where the plant is often kept under strict lock and key.

But Washington state has one very significant exception to its lax cannabis regulations: no home growing. You can go to a recreational dispensary without a medical-marijuana recommendation and load up. You cannot, however, crack a seed from that bag of mid-grade and start your own grow. Unlike Oregon, California, Colorado, Alaska, and every other state where recreational marijuana is legal, adults in Washington cannot cultivate at home unless they have a medical-marijuana recommendation.


Legal Marijuana just can't catch a break From Washington

The marijuana industry has taken a couple of hits in Washington this month.

First, an amendment that would have stripped a part of the tax code that places extra financial burden on cannabis businesses was pulled at the last minute from the GOP tax plan approved by the U.S. Senate.

Also, Attorney General Jeff Sessions again made remarks that seemed to threaten a potential federal crackdown on the legal marijuana business any day now, maybe even by the time you read this. The events underscore the fact that even as the marijuana industry continues to grow by leaps and bounds, it still faces challenges.

No tax relief, yet.


United States tried decriminalizing pot before. Here's why it didn't work

In the past five years, eight states and Washington, D.C., have legalized recreational marijuana for adults. Today, 68 million people live in areas where marijuana is treated like alcohol or tobacco. The drug is sold in stores, millions of tax dollars are being raised from its sale, and an increasing number of businesspeople are profiting in this lucrative new industry.

Long seen as either a hippie accessory or a dangerous gateway drug, legal marijuana is booming. Pot is so popular that, in 2015, its sales surpassed Girl Scout cookies, Oreos, and Dasani bottled water. By 2026, analysts predict it will match, and eventually outpace, America’s $50 billion wedding industry.


California: Legal Marijuana sales are expected to grow 33% to $10 billion this year

Consumer spending on legal cannabis in North America is outpacing previous estimates, according to a new report out today from Arcview Market Research. According to the just released Mid-Year Update to The State of Legal Marijuana Markets 5th Edition, retail cannabis sales will grow 33% from 2016 to nearly $10 billion this year. By 2021 Arcview projects the legal market to reach $24.5 billion, a 28% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). The full original 200+ page report, as well as this 100+ page supplement to the original report, published by Arcview Market Research in partnership with BDS Analytics, is available for $597.


Washington state finally considers allowing recreational home-grows

The state's Liquor and Cannabis Board suggests a few paths that could permit homegrown weed, while hopefully keeping the feds out of their hair.

Recreational cannabis has been legal in Washington state since 2012, but while adult recreational users are free to purchase weed from retail stores, they are prohibited from growing their own. That may be about to change now that the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) has released recommendations on several possible alternatives for allowing recreational home-grows in the state. These recommendations are the result of a study ordered earlier this year by the state Legislature to assess the potential impact and legal ramifications of lifting the prohibition of home-grows.


Washington state tells British Columbia not to worry about legal weed as Canada releases draft rules

The Canadian federal government has released its proposed cannabis regulations ahead of the planned July 2018 deadline to legalize recreational cannabis across the country, reports CBC News. These regulations will control the licensing, tracking and security, and packaging and labelling of recreational cannabis, while also imposing new rules for medical and cosmetic cannabis products.

But as the date for legalization draws near, many Canadians have voiced fears over whether legalization will increase crime or increase children's access to the drug. In a recent meeting with British Columbia Premier John Horgan, Washington Governor Jay Inslee advised Canadians to ignore these fear-mongering rumors.


In era of legalization, illegal marijuana grows continue in northwest states

Recreational marijuana may be legal in Washington and Oregon, but police continue to bust illegal pot operations that aren’t licensed by the state.

The latest numbers from the Washington State Patrol show that 89 illegal marijuana grow operations were shut down in Washington in the past year. Some were indoor grows, most were outdoor.

In total police seized 24,000 marijuana plants, more than 100 weapons and made more than 100 arrests. The total value of assets seized was nearly $2 million.


Republicans block marijuana banking measure

Republican congressional leadership is blocking consideration of a measure to allow marijuana businesses to deposit their profits in banks.

Many financial institutions are currently afraid to serve cannabis businesses that are legal in a growing number of states because of ongoing federal prohibition and the associated risk of running afoul of money laundering and drug laws.

As a result, many marijuana growing, processing and retail operations carry out business on a cash-only basis, making them targets for robberies.


Marijuana legalization - What are the effects?

More and more Americans want freedom—the freedom to smoke pot. And more and more Americans are getting it: Eight states already allow cannabis for recreational use; 21 more permit it for “medicinal” use. Now 6 in 10 Americans support full legalization, and campaigns for it are gaining momentum nationwide.

If we were wise, before we rode this train any further, we would examine how things are working out. November 6 marked five years since Colorado and Washington State voted to approve pot use. What are the “fruits” growing from this weed?


Subscribe to RSS - Washington