Washington State’s Cannabis Industry is a “Team” Effort
News from www.WashingtonMy420Network.com
Washington continues to show their ‘team’ mindset, no matter what adversity they happen to face. For example, much of last year was spent dealing with the havoc that raging fires brought to the state. The wildfire season began in March 2020, and by September, over 713,000 acres were burned. When it finally came to an end, the 2020 season saw more individual fires than in any other recorded year, and picking up the pieces was more than difficult.
The one thing that perhaps saved the state’s economy was the cannabis industry. In fact, recent reports stated that since legalization, the industry has grown at a “staggering rate” and now contributes approximately $2 billion a year to their economy. Not only that, but a report titled “2020 Contributions of the Washington Cannabis Sector” found that the industry was also responsible for $1.85 billion of gross state product and supported around 18,700 jobs.
It is encouraging to see that even with the painful experiences the state had to deal with when it came to the wildfires, the industry not only remained successful but was actually bordering on phenomenal, with sales tripling from 2015 to 2020. And while offering praise for the past, experts also speak about continued growth in the future. Forecasts are being made that in 2021, contributions to Washington’s gross state product from the cannabis sector will end up being more than $2.13 billion.
A spokesperson for the WSU Impact Center and the Washington State Cannabis Alliance, Caitlein Ryan, said: “There is still substantial growth to come as the industry matures.”
One of the next steps she’s referring to that would further benefit the economy, is for Washington state lawmakers to legalize home cultivation for recreational use. The practice remains banned at the moment (although limited home grows are allowed for medical marijuana patients), but a bill to make this change is currently in the state legislature.
Unlike what Michigan recently reported (stating that one of the reasons their sales numbers are falling is because more people are growing plants at home), the report done for Washington state shows the exact opposite. After ample research, it turns out that allowing recreational marijuana home grows would not detract from existing businesses whatsoever. Instead, it would be beneficial and expand the industry through consumers’ experimentation and innovation.
It can never be said that Washington does not do its research and studies, while also throwing their full support behind the industry. A recent headline announced cannabis regulators were forming a compliance task force to assist marijuana businesses in following state laws. The press release noted that the goal of the group is to help licensees understand and comply with state cannabis requirements, laws and rules, and to help licensees achieve and maintain compliance.”
This is yet another “team” effort to help the industry be a continued success. Not to be confused with law enforcement officers, this group was designed for support and to offer technical assistance to licensed marijuana growers, processors, retailers, researchers and transporters; they cannot issue administrative violations of any kind. And with consultants being assigned to various geographic areas, they will provide statewide coverage and build strong working relationships. They will also offer their services in several areas, such as conducting inspections; they will set up planned visits with licensees where they will walk through a business, identify any compliance problems that may exist, and provide suggestions and ideas to help the owner correct them. The consultants will also assist in training staff members, as well as participate in industry association meetings.
When looking at the states that have legalized the cannabis industry, Washington is definitely one that deserves high marks for consistency. Standing behind their business owners and residents, just as they do when negative things happen, this state continues to run like a well-oiled machine.
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