California lives up to its progressive, innovative spirit
Cannabis remains illegal in the United States (U.S.) at the federal level. However, the majority of U.S. states, along with the District of Columbia, have legalized cannabis for medical purposes, while 10 states and the District of Columbia have legalized the drug for recreational use.
In 1996, California legalized medical marijuana, making it the first U.S. state to do so. Exactly 20 years later, Californians voted in favor of Proposition 64 to legalize the use, production, and sale of recreational marijuana. As of January 1st, 2018, cannabis use became fully legal in California. The state, for the most part, has always been quite progressive, and so it was only natural to expect full legalization to eventually occur.
The progressive nature of California makes it a hotbed for innovation. Such a fact is true even in the cannabis industry. Several innovative cannabis products and accessories originated in California even before the recent legalization of the drug for recreational use.
The state has also taken a further step in the innovation department with an attempt to move the cannabis industry into the digital era. It’s only right that such a technological hotbed would eventually move the cannabis industry on to the Internet.
And it has indeed, as we explore below:
Get it at your door- EAZE!
Eaze has been in the business of delivering medical marijuana since 2014. What started as a simple idea in Keith McCarty’s apartment, its founder and former CEO (Chief Executive Officer), has since expanded to a business chain supplying to 100 cities within California, and at least 500,000 customers.
As a result of its partnerships with various dispensaries, the digital marketing platform allows its users to order legal cannabis products on a mobile app, and their purchases get delivered to their doorstep.
Customers can order a broad range of products that would usually be available in a walk-in cannabis store — vaporizers, edibles, capsules, prerolls and concentrates, to name a few.
The San-Francisco company takes its cannabis business seriously, and there’s plenty of evidence in the fact they have since diversified to offer what we might call auxiliary services to their clients. Most notable of these additions is the EazeMD, a service that helps those interested in acquiring a marijuana card do so. The service comes in the form of telemedicine, as physicians can assess patients through an online video chat to determine their eligibility for a marijuana card.
Eaze has also launched EazeWellness, a separate platform that delivers hemp-derived Cannabidiol(CBD) to 41 states other than California. In the words of CEO Jim Patterson, the platform intends to “provide a destination where consumers can find the (high-quality CBD) products that are right for them.”
Opponents of cannabis delivery
Even though marijuana delivery is a regulated and legal market in California, delivery companies have seen their fair share of challenges, especially with law enforcement agencies.
The most prominent opposition so far has been a coalition of Police Chiefs from the California Police Chiefs Association. This resistance came at a time when the state’s Bureau of Cannabis Control passed a regulation to allow home deliveries across the state, even in largely conservative communities that had banned the commercial sale of cannabis.
According to the police association, allowing a ‘blanket’ delivery of the marijuana raised the risk of an increase in crime rate, an undermining of local regulations in gray market areas, and an ‘unruly’ market so to speak.
The Police Chiefs aren’t the only opposing force, however. Delivering illicit drugs, in general, is an alien idea in the United States, especially across state lines. Because most major mailing services in the United States are federally regulated, there is a conflict created with cannabis delivery via the mail because recreational cannabis is still illegal under federal law.
How they’re trying to stop it?
In 2018, a few Police Chiefs took to the streets to oppose the proposed state rule given by the Bureau of Cannabis Control. Joining the League of California Cities which was the instigator of this campaign, and the Commercial Workers Western States Council, the group launched a campaign to push their anti-delivery agenda, even launching a website dubbed “Stop Wandering Weed.”
Negative effects of stopping legal delivery
According to a report published by Eaze in July 2018, 18 percent of California’s cannabis consumers were getting their supply from illegal channels.
With the police breathing down the necks of delivery companies and actual cannabis stores, it would make sense that there would be less of the legitimate products allowed on the shelves. This move would, in turn, translate too many buyers feeling unsatisfied and looking for options elsewhere — including the black market.
With what seems to be a bumpy start to California’s legal cannabis market, it would be interesting to watch how the delivery companies and law enforcement work together in coming days to facilitate a smooth, yet legal, working of the marijuana delivery market. In general, only people who are 21 and older are allowed to possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana at any given time. Perhaps that should be the only concern to law enforcement officials, as far as what’s legal or illegal cannabis behavior in California.