California is about to open its first legal cannabis shops and it’s posing a huge problem for local pot farms

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Wow! Check this out! These people are just openly admitting that they will sell to the black market in CA. Do these people expect us to feel sorry for them that decades long businesses of growing and selling pot ILLEGALLY (clearly drug dealers!!!) is going up in smoke because of legalization???? This is so amazingly absurd that it’s hard to believe it’s real. They cry when marijuana is illegal and now they are complaining that making it legal is too much of a hardship for them to follow through on.

Legalizing Weed creates three markets, now –  ‘legal’  – ‘Grey’ –  ‘Illegal’ (unregulated)… so much for ‘legalizing marijuana will stop the illegal trade!’ mantra!

From the Article – “It’s putting us in a situation where if we’re not able to sell to that market anymore we’re having to find new, illegal channels in a saturated market,” says June. “We would either have to shut down or find new avenues of sale on the black market or the unregulated market.”

“It’s been a lot more difficult than we thought,” says Shivawn Brady, operations director for an Illinois-based medical cannabis company called Justice Grown that operates a farm in Sonoma County. She urges financial assistance to be given to smaller-scale growers, noting a single permit can cost $10,000 to $20,000 — not to mention land use requirements that can compel people to relocate. “It’s hurting a lot of people,” she says.

Brandon Levine, director of a dispensary called Mercy Wellness, says he doubts 10 per cent of the hundreds of growers he currently works with will be able to get licensed.

“There won’t be legal outlets for all the people that cultivate and have gone to dispensaries, so the black market is going to explode,” Levine says, calling the situation “hugely urgent”.

Suppressing the black market was a central argument for proponents of legalisation, who argued that legal outlets would undercut the illicit trade. While it is an open secret in marijuana country that the black market absorbs some of what is grown, many cultivators have embraced legalisation as a way to come out of hiding and grow conscientiously, touting environmental protections and a way to finally jettison the ever-present threat of prosecution.

But some of them won’t be able to get their products into the regulated market, and “people who work with dispensaries and can’t get permitted aren’t going to stop growing,” says Sonoma cultivator Julie Terry, voicing a widely shared sentiment.

“Many, many people will not be in that regulated market,” says Sam Magruder, a Sonoma County grower who has sunk millions into obtaining properly zoned land and getting it up to code for his growing operation.

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