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A quick look at Delaware’s cannabis regs

Plus, social equity troubles in Massachusetts

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Good morning.

We’re looking forward to today’s Cultivated Live with the New York Office of Cannabis Management’s former deputy communications director Aaron Ghitelman.

We’re going to get into what it was like working at the OCM, his perspective on the big shakeup last week, and where New York’s push to center social equity in the burgeoning cannabis market goes from here.

-JB & JR

This newsletter is 881 words or about a 4-minute read.  

💡What’s the big deal?

A first look at Delaware’s cannabis regulations

Driving the news: Delaware legalized cannabis last year in April. Until then, it was one of the few non-legal holdouts in the broader Northeast, aside from Pennsylvania and New Hampshire. 

What happened: Yesterday, we got our first look at the proposed rules for the state’s cannabis industry, as reported by Delaware Public Media.

The regulations outline the requirements for licensing, packaging, and inspection standards. They also outline the state’s social equity licensing program, which applies those convicted of a cannabis-related crime, or have lived in an area disproportionately impacted by policing and the War on Drugs for five of the last ten years. 

What’s next? The regulations will be open for public comment until June 3, and are set to be finalized by July 30.

The state’s Office of the Marijuana Commissioner says it’s on track to award retail licenses by March 2025.

The final word: Ohio, Minnesota, and now Delaware. That’s a lot of potential cannabis consumers entering the legal fold in the next year. 


🗨️ Quote of the day

“How much you make off a gram of weed is actually not worth it,” said Sean Hope, the owner of the Cambridge dispensary Yamba. “It’s so hard to open a dispensary. People don’t know that. It’s their life dream and they want to get there. But the pot of gold is not at the end of the rainbow.”

This quote comes from a deep-dive story in Commonwealth Beacon about the promises and pitfalls of Massachusetts’ cannabis social equity program.

Worth your time, especially in light of what’s happening in New York. 

Quick hits

Florida’s Smart & Safe campaign to legalize cannabis in the state in November put out its first TV spot focused on giving Floridians the “freedom to make their own choices.” You can watch it 👇

Pharmaceutical, manufacturing and big agriculture interests have spent more than $400 million lobbying Congress on a new farm bill, The Hill reports

Federal investigators arrested three men in Massachusetts who are accused of robbing a cannabis delivery courier of $436,000 in cash, per local news reports. Cannabis delivery drivers are especially at risk of robbery, given the cash-intensive nature of the business. 

NY Cannabis Insider reports that New York’s Office of Cannabis Management approved a chemical for use in the extraction process — but didn’t notify business owner Jenny Argie, who’s facility was shut down for using the chemical. Argie alleged that the OCM retaliated against her. Read the story here.

A woman was arrested with 70 pounds of cannabis trying to board a flight from Boston to London, the second arrest in two months, reports NBC Boston.

📊 Earnings round-up

Glasshouse Brands, a cannabis cultivator and retailer, reported an $18 million net loss on $30 million of revenue — a 9% increase from the year prior — for the first quarter of 2024. 

Springbig, a cannabis software firm, reported a $400,000 profit on $6.5 million revenue for the first quarter of 2024, down from $7.2 million the year prior.

Ispire Technology Inc., a cannabis vape and dosing company, reported a $5.9 million net loss, up from $2.3 million the year prior, on $30 million of revenue for the quarter ending March 31. 

🚀 Deals, launches, partnerships

Weedgets, a medical cannabis device company, will partner with the American Cannabis Nurses Association (ACNA) to release co-branded marketing and educational initiatives this year. Earlier in the year, we welcomed Weedgets CEO on Cultivated Live.

🤣 One fun thing

Colorado Sen. John Hickenlooper (and former governor) wants you to know that rescheduling marijuana is a step in the right direction for Colorado — but just a step! 

He’s advocating for fully removing cannabis from the list of federally controlled substances, and says the time for federal legalization is coming. 

📈 Chart of the day

Cannabis analytics firm BDSA forecasts that the global cannabis industry will be worth $58 billion, including both medical and recreational use, by 2028. They forecast a nearly 10% compound annual growth rate.

📰 What we’re reading

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