Massachusetts’s first regulations concerning recreational cannabis came Monday, November 30, when the state’s Cannabis Control Commission approved limitations on home delivery services. According to WCVB, the new law enacts two types of delivery licenses:
- Cannabis couriers will be allowed to charge a fee to make deliveries from a retailer or dispensary to the customer.
- Cannabis delivery operators are permitted to buy wholesale products and make deliveries from their own warehouses.
These new regulations weren’t met without controversy as they allow courier companies to purchase and exchange cannabis on a wholesale level. In turn, this would drive up an online retail market that could have a major impact on mom-and-pop dispensary shops.
However, there is one positive aspect of this bill. The law promises an introduction to the cannabis industry for those who have been most affected by the War on Drugs. People of this category have priority when it comes to license approval.
“We’re way behind,” Marion McNabb, Ph.D., president of the Cannabis Center of Excellence, told the Boston Herald. “There are very few social equities or economic empowerment candidates actually issued licenses compared to other applicants. This is an opportunity for the commission to take a bold stance to advance equity.”
Unfortunately, while the law gives priority to those most affected, it doesn’t provide any extra assistance. One of the biggest challenges individuals are going to face is producing the up-front capital necessary to start a cannabis business. And, as we’ve discussed before, that’s extremely difficult when banks refuse to lend loans for cannabis start-ups.
Kobie Evans, the first economic empowerment candidate to open a recreational cannabis dispensary, understands this difficulty: “There are more obstacles in this path for people of the minority community and the last vestige is delivery and trying to get that set up is an obstacle in itself.”