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Look Out California Growers, the Weed Walmart is Coming

There’s a lot of information to digest in this excellent piece on the ups and downs of the California Medical Marijuana trade, but I wanted to draw your attention to this: We now know one of the people who will benefit from Oakland’s licensed grow warehouse proposal:

The Council will consider the new plan in July, and if it passes, the AgraMed company will be poised to apply. The company proposes to build a 100,000-square-foot medical marijuana megafarm beside Interstate 880 near Oakland International Airport that, according to projections, could generate 58 pounds of pot a day and $59 million a year in revenue.

As we learn in the article, AgraMed’s President is Jeff Wilcox. He is also a member of the steering committee for the initiative to legalize marijuana. Some of us want to legalize marijuana because it’s the right thing to do. Jeff Wilcox wants it legalized because he stands to make almost $60 million per year.

Now we know why this proposal was written this way. It benefits a few well-connected political players while leaving all the small producers, grower’s collectives and other medical marijuana entrepreneurs to twist in the wind.

People like Chris Smith, for instance:

“To me, it’s a money movement now,” said Chris Smith, who is part of 40 Acres Medical Marijuana Collective, an underground medical marijuana group in Berkeley. “Most of them probably got a little political pull or a little political networking; they got lawyers; they got money for lawyers; they jump right in to position.”

The 40 Acres Collective consists of about 100 growers and users who gather to share pot, money and plants.

Smith said the collective would like to be able to get a city permit and become a licensed dispensary. But the city has capped the number of pot clubs at three, and all the spots are taken. Smith said he worried that 40 Acres Collective might ultimately be shut out.

What happens when Smith’s collective is “shut out”? He’ll be forced to pay a premium price to get his medicine from the same mega-business that ruined his livelihood.

This proposal is a slap in the face to the thousands of small growers in California, the very people who created and improved some of the strains that have proven so effective for medicinal use. The more I read about it, the more I’m opposed to it. I’ll take no law over entrenching big business any day.

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Life Really is Better in California

In the middle of a good primer on evaluating bud, I saw this little gem:

Chances are if you are on the West Coast or in Colorado, you have a great sense of what’s good and what’s bad.  If you live somewhere else in the US, I hate to break it to you, but the weed just isn’t that good where you are.  Now I’m not saying good weed doesn’t exist anywhere else in the US, but I am saying that it is hard as hell to find, costs an arm and a leg, and doesn’t come in large supplies.  There are always home cultivators in any part of the nation that are producing top quality nugs, but that doesn’t always mean that they share!  On the West Coast and in Colorado, due to SO MANY GROWERS, top quality marijuana flows like water, and therefore, the consumers in those areas are exposed to many more top quality strains.  As a result, they are much more educated on the topic of cannabis quality.

I don’t mean to toot my West Coast horn or anything, but this is undeniably true. In most of the country, you simply smoke what’s available, because obtaining it is so difficult. In California, on the other hand, there is so much superior weed going around that Humboldt outdoor isn’t even up to snuff anymore for many California medical marijuana dispensaries!

Just a reminder that despite the many problems in the world of medical marijuana, those of us lucky enough to live where cannabis can be obtained safely and legally are blessed with an abundance of high-quality medicine.

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