States Ban Flavored Vaping Products and Nevada Gets Its First Cannabis Lounge! Job opportunities and revenue in the cannabis industry seem aplenty, but legalization has also stirred up unforeseen issues such as vaping health concerns. Pair that with a volatile stock market and you have a recipe for unscrupulous activity and financial instability. If you’re looking to stay abreast of the latest cannabis news of the day, here’s a brief summary of today’s top cannabis news stories.
Massachusetts Approves Home Cannabis Delivery
Massachusett’s Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) recently approved regulations that allow recreational home delivery. Medical patients can already buy from home marijuana delivery services. Part of the reason that lawmakers decided to approve the delivery bill was to reduce black market delivery services that cut into legal taxes and increase criminal activity.
The new rules indicate that during the first two years, delivery licenses shall be prioritized for applicants in the social equity program with a few exceptions such as small and local businesses. Applicants must live in a community that qualifies as “an area of disproportionate impact,” have income that does not exceed 400 percent of the federal poverty level, or have a recent drug conviction.
Here are a few other key takeaways from the home delivery regulations:
- The CCC can extend the social equity program for an additional year
- Customers must visit a dispensary in-store to confirm their age before getting delivery from the location
- Operating hours are between 8 am and 9 pm
- Drivers must travel in pairs
- Delivery employees must wear body cameras
MedMen Ends Major Deal
MedMen’s multi-state network of dispensaries can be found in Arizona, California, Illinois, Nevada, Florida, and New York. Their move toward domination of the cannabis retail industry was stalled when they pulled out of the industry’s most lucrative deal to date. MedMen had previously agreed to buy PharmaCann, a Chicago-based cannabis company, for $682 million.
MedMen cited a lack of confidence among investors in the cannabis industry and a fledgling stock market for the deal’s collapse. In a news release, MedMen said that “the underperformance has made it increasingly more critical to allocate capital efficiently, given the current industry headwinds.”
Although the merger fell through, MedMen will still be able to make their mark in Illinois’ marijuana market. MedMen agrees to forgive $21 million in PharmaCann debt in exchange for a cultivation facility, retail store, and license to open another dispensary in Chicago. That will give MedMen a handful of locations in Illinois, which may be able to turn around the company’s falling share price and leadership instability.
States Ban Flavored E-Cigs
Amidst a health scare of unprecedented proportions, multiple states are taking initiative toward protecting consumers from tainted vaping products. Over 1,080 cases have been confirmed in a recent spate of pulmonary illnessesattributed to nicotine and THC vapes. Out of these cases, 21 deaths were directly attributed to e-cigarette use.
Montana Governor Steve Bullock instituted a 120-day ban on flavored vaping products that goes into effect on October 22, 2019. In Washington, Governor Jay Inslee called for a ban on flavored vapes. Massachusetts governor ordered a four-month ban, becoming one of the harshest responses to the vaping epidemic so far. Other states who have taken similar actions include Oregon, Rhode Island, New York, and Michigan.
East Coast’s First Outdoor Cannabis Harvest
Outdoor cannabis cultivation has been flourishing in the West Coast for decades, but it wasn’t until recently that the East Coast decided to weather their less-than-ideal climate for cannabis cultivation. The Washington Post reports how Culta, a cannabis cultivation company in Maryland, is planting the East Coast’s first outdoor cannabis field. About an acre of land is reserved for outdoor cannabis cultivation.
Outdoor cannabis farming can save cultivators on massive indoor energy costs needed to provide airflow, water, nutrients, and light to cannabis plants. Unfortunately, the East Coast’s humidity and fluctuating temperatures have made cultivators resistant to pursue this avenue. Culta plans on using its sustainable outdoor-grown weed to make concentrates, tinctures, and vape cartridges instead of smokable flower buds.
Nevada’s First Cannabis Lounge
Right after the nation got its first cannabis cafe in Los Angeles, Nevada opened its first cannabis lounge, NuWu Cannabis Marketplace. Currently, Nevada doesn’t allow cannabis lounges, but NuWu is located on tribal land that remains under the Paiute Tribe’s authority. In 2017, NuWu became the state’s first dispensary on tribal land and first to have a drive-thru.
Since its opening on October 5, NuWu has welcome cannabis consumers into their brewery and wine tasting room atmosphere. Inside, customers can sample their selection of strains before they commit to a purchase. Servers will also be offering smoking, vaporizing, and edible products. Nevada was close to getting pot lounges, but Governor Sisolak signed a bill that put a two-year hold on lounges while research is done.
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