Last year was a big year for cannabis, with the legalization of medical cannabis in Oregon and the opening of the state's first medical marijuana dispensary in Portland.
Last year, the cannabis industry and recreational users in Oregon passed the $1 billion sales mark, closing the year with sales of more than $2.5 billion for the first time in the state's history. This sudden increase in sales should not come as a surprise, but what about the future of the industry as a whole?
A pandemic may have been the source of the industry's sudden boom, but it could also be the source of many unforeseen obstacles. Thousands across the state are suddenly quarantined and have much more time. "There are many challenges on both sides because of all the problems we have had with COVID", he said.
Cannabis shops have adapted to the new normal and have moved to the intake and distribution of cannabis, but they have had to adapt and follow the rules and regulations that surround the industry and respond to and adopt them. Overall, business with the newly classified "essential services" went smoothly. For example, there is no limit on the number of services provided as long as they are licensed in the jurisdiction and they could be exploited if people choose to do so.
The protests against racial justice in Portland this summer gave the process a new boost, as there has been talking for some time of investing more taxpayer money in social justice programs. Important changes are in sight, including the legalization of medical cannabis and the expansion of the state medical marijuana program.