California’s hashish exodus to Oklahoma

What does the best way ahead for cannabis appear to be in California and all through the nation? A attainable reply lies in an unlikely place. Oklahoma is a politically conservative, medical-marijuana-only state throughout the South that’s a beacon of hope, a cautionary story and a strategic prolonged recreation .

When Sooner State voters legalized medical marijuana on the ballot discipline in June 2018, enterprise exploded resulting from combination of issues that included low infrastructure costs; a low value of entry to the market (enterprise licenses value merely $2,500); no cap on the number of dispensaries (there are at current better than 8,000 throughout the state compared with about 900 in California, which has 10 events the inhabitants); and the relative ease with which state residents can obtain a medical card (spherical 10% of Oklahoma residents now have one).

In addition to, the one hurdle for out-of-state corporations attempting to rearrange retailer is the requirement the enterprise be 75% owned by an Oklahoma resident.

On account of Oklahoma and California are three time zones apart and by no means lots as a cannabis seed can cross state strains (on account of weed’s standing as an illegal drug beneath federal regulation), you gained’t assume what’s occurring throughout the Panhandle State would have lots the least bit to do with what’s occurring throughout the Golden State.

That’s what I believed until remaining August, when Chris Ball, founder and chief govt of L.A.-based Ball Household Farms, suggested me in an interview that he’d purchased 75 acres in Oklahoma, secured a license there and was planning ahead — strategy ahead — for a time when weed was federally approved and the state’s central location would make it the right hub for low-cost, coast-to-coast cannabis commerce.

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Inside the months since, I discovered more and more extra California producers had established a presence throughout the state. One among them is L.A.-based Tradecraft Farms, which was an early entry into the Oklahoma market, establishing a seed-to-sale operation beginning in 2019 and now has cultivation providers and 5 dispensaries.

One different is Venice-based Stone Highway Farms, which has inked a licensing deal with Tulsa-based Stash Home Distribution. The latter is accountable for the cultivation end and locations the ends in Stone Avenue packaging. (Stash House at current has the identical set-up with a 4 totally different California producers.)

Lastly, it turned clear that I wished to position (cowboy) boots on the underside to find the California-Oklahoma connection in further depth.

Last month, I joined “The Inexperienced Room” video crew (producer Erik Himmelsbach-Weinstein and videographers Mark Potts and Cody Prolonged) for a four-day, three-city tour that took us from frozen fields and opulent inexperienced develop rooms to the hallowed halls of the Oklahoma State Capitol. Alongside one of the simplest ways we talked to bureaucrats, regulation enforcement, cannabis consultants, recreational-use advocates and businesspeople trying to make a buck in what’s been dubbed the Wild, Wild West of weed.

Alongside one of the simplest ways, we found heaps regarding the cannabis enterprise native climate there — and what it would portend for the approved weed enterprise proper right here.

The video above is the first episode of Season 2 of our assortment. Welcome (once more) to “The Inexperienced Room”!