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Cannabis legalization loses zest in New Zealand

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Cannabis legalization in New Zealand is losing is zest as other issues like euthanasia and covid-19 are gaining more attention.

Advocates of cannabis legalization were contemplating New Zealand to join in the ranks with Canada and Uruguay by sanctioning the sale, cultivation and recreational use of cannabis. Although the proposed legislative changes were expected to attract a lot of public interest but contrary to this belief, proponents of the idea have declined in the past few months.

In a survey of about 1000 people conducted by 1 News Colmar Brunton poll, the percentage of people supporting the proposed laws has fallen to 35%. This number stood at 40% in June, and 43% in November of 2019. As opposed to this, the proportion of those against the legalization of cannabis has increased to 53% .

In addition to this, Horizon Research has found a head to head competition on the legalization verdict by conducting a nationwide survey on the matter. According to its findings, about 49.5% respondents voted in favor of cannabis legalization, and an exactly similar aggregate voted against it. The remaining 1% gave no response.

Photosource: HorizonPoll

One of the main reasons for a decline of public interest on the issue of cannabis legalization is the COVID-19 pandemic. Ever since its attack on the world, the virus has become the most discussed topic among all governments, New Zealand being no exception. The pandemic has not only inhibited campaigns for popularizing cannabis, but due the gravity of its impact, most elections have focused on managing the crises at hand.

Therefore, many  in the government have chosen to avoid sharing their views on the subject.

Cannabis Legalization in New Zealand

Alongside the general election of 2020, voters in New Zealand will be handed two referendums asking for a simple “yes” or “no” vote on cannabis legalization. This referendum will also be accompanied by another one which will be focusing on euthanasia. New Zealand is going to be the first country to put up the matter for a public verdict. This has taken away some of the enthusiasm of voters from the issue of cannabis legalization. Voters will be free to vote on both or either of the referendums, or not vote at all.

For the cannabis referendum, the question asked from the voters is quite straight forward. It is worded as neutrally as possible to provide voters a complete understanding of the proposal at hand.

“Do you support the proposed Cannabis Legalization and Control Bill?”

If the referendum wins by more than 50% votes, it will be presented before the new government in the parliament. Therefore, keeping in mind all the phases which the referendum will pass through, actual legalization cannot take place before 2021. This will also depend upon the percentage of support it gets on the referendum.

What is in the bill?

In a nutshell, the legalization would do the following for the cannabis industry of New Zealand:

  • Make the use, purchase and exchange of cannabis legal for adults 20 years and older
  • Allow the use of 14 grams of dried cannabis or its equivalent per day
  • Permit the consumption and purchase of cannabis from licensed premises
  • Allow cultivation of up to two plants, with a maximum of four plants per household
  • Share up to 14 grams of dried cannabis (or its equivalent) with another person aged 20 or over

The restrictions on the cannabis industry will be stronger than those on tobacco and alcohol. Some of them are as follows:

  • Like USA, no advertising of cannabis products will be allowed
  • The products will be allowed to be only used at home
  • Only licensed premises can permit on location consumption of cannabis products
  • A regulatory body will be formed that would decide the location of retail outlets and consumption premises on a case by case basis

What will legalization mean for New Zealand?

Cannabis and its derivatives are considered illegal in New Zealand. This classification has lead to a conviction of about 45,665 individuals in the past decade, with about 6583 imprisonments.

“A ‘yes’ vote in the 2020 referendum will be positive for social justice and equity, contribute to reducing the country’s excessively large prison population, and enable those health issues associated with cannabis to be dealt with upfront,” says former Labour Prime Minister Helen Clark

Cannabis activists calling for reform say a lot of these statistics could change with the legalization of the drug. Not only will this free police resources, but will also leave more funds to be invested into other socially important causes like healthcare, education and infrastructure.

This industry could generate about $NZ1.4bn each year, according to reports by BERL. The agency predicted an influx of 400 cannabis stores and about 5000 jobs in the market.

Moreover, legalization would also address racial discriminations in arrests and police behavior. According to statistics, about 41% of cannabis offences were ‘recorded’ in Māori in the last 5 years. Most of the convicts were of a non-Māori origin.

The bill has had its fair share of opposition from politicians. According to Aaron Ironside from Smart Approaches to Marijuana NZ, opposing cannabis legalization was to protect the health of users. “The taxes and excises on alcohol have not been sufficient to cover the social harms of alcohol. We need to focus on the health … let’s not create more addicts to do that.”

Despite of a shift in the focus of voters in this year’s elections, the issue of cannabis legalization will likely rise again.

A graduate in Bachelors of Business Administration, Yumna Haq is an ardent researcher and a dedicated writer. Having lived in three different counties, her cultural exposure is vast, allowing her to reflect more knowledge in her work. She's currently working for Cannabis Health Insider as a news writer.

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Four Tips to Secure Cannabis Dispensaries in Oregon Today

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cannabis dispensaries with grilles

Since the chain of cannabis crime is being beaded at a much faster rate in Portland, Oregano, there is a dire need to enhance the security measures. Robbery of a cannabis dispensary is as money-spinning as of a bank. Until an act is passed to allow the transactions, cannabis dispensaries remain the prime target of a robbery as all dealings continued to be done in cash.

Tips to Fortify Cannabis Dispensaries Security

The recent report by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission showed almost 120 robberies since march 2020  in Portland Metro alone. It resulted in a total loss of $500,000 in terms of both products and cash. To strengthen the security around the dispensary in a quick and easy way, a key step is to install rolling doors to keep criminal activities at bay.

Tip #1 – Tight Security Measures at Storefront

One of the most popular yet helpful ideas to prevent looting is to install heavy-duty steel doors, which can help add an extra layer of protection for the cannabis business. The plus point is that the manufacturer can directly mount it into the already existing buildings exteriorly. Also, these are significantly helpful in protecting the glass windows, which can be expensive to replace.

What’s more, it can block the view of the thieves to the merchandise. These are different from the other standard rolling grills. With these, the criminals won’t be able to see the stockware when the door is closed. Some of the dispensaries have tested their door against the Department of Defense to assure that even no violent attack can harm them. These doors are lift- and pry-resistant.

Tip #2 – Need of Visibility and Ventilation

If the cannabis dispensary owner wants to let the outside world see their merchandise, there is a need for more robust security. With compact impact glass and a heavy-duty grille, it is possible to stay away from the world’s sight when needed.

Easy custom orders and installation makes it an excellent choice to adhere to the security demands. Heavy-duty grilles that have rods closely spaced and strong interconnections are difficult to lift and attack than the standard grilles.

ALSO READ: First Medical Marijuana Dispensary Opens- Wait over for Missourians

The rolling grilles become even a much better option to protect the counters in the cannabis dispensaries. There is no need to do any modifications to adjust it behind the glass door. It can be easily installed in small places where the ceiling is low.

Tip #3 – Separating Cannabis Dispensary from the Store

Cannabis dispensaries in the high-end stores need extra protection, and thus, important to separate them from the rest of the shop. Cannabis dispensary separated from the rest of the shop can have different operational hours like some states have specifically specified.

The mesh metal grilles look much better and significantly affect the aesthetics of the store. It can deliver both beauty and security while customers can easily view the cannabis products of the store. There are manufacturers who are even designing logos on the grilles to give aesthetic pleasure.

Tip #4 – Secure Delivery to and from Cannabis Dispensaries

The cannabis dispensary owners usually tend to forget about secure deliveries that are most prone to attacks. Deliveries being made at the store back and the receiving areas are usually the areas of concern. It is extremely important to track down the time of delivery, people present there, and the stock delivered.

ALSO READ: Cannabis Home Delivery Services Likely to commence in Massachusetts

The heavy-duty service rolling doors provide exceptional security than those traditional sectional rolling doors. They are made to meet the demands of beauty and security, both as they are highly customizable and can be easily adjusted to limited spaces. They offer the idea of security by using stainless steel, galvanized steel, and aluminum in the grilles.

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Impaired Driving: A Must Consideration for the State’s Cannabis Bill

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impaired driving in New York

Even with the concept of Vision Zero and more raising concerns for the traffic rules, Albany legislators aren’t focused on it, while rushing to legalize the use of cannabis in New York. Silive shares the thoughts of how important it is to slow down the process of legalization and first pass on a bill that would stop impaired driving and hold marijuana-impaired drivers accountable for accidents.

Before the legalization of marijuana, to create a safer environment, it is extremely important to put pressure on the notion that studies categorize all intoxicating substances as unsafe for driving.

Impaired Driving Same as a Speeding Ticket

No consideration against the impaired driving would make people think it unimportant as a speeding ticket. This indirect message by the leaders would eventually lead to a greater number of casualties with each passing day.

It is nothing but a truth that marijuana has the potency to affect concentration, response time, motor function, and movement. Also, the science links a high concentration of THC in the blood due to cannabis intake to impaired driving. Surprisingly, marijuana is a second substance that has a major influence on driving capability after alcohol.

Need to Reinforce the Drug Definition in New York

Apart from considering classifying impaired driving due to marijuana as a minor criminal act, some light should also be shed on revising the term drug as other 45 states have done. Any substance should be called a drug that can compromise the ability to think, focus, and react.

ALSO READ: Marijuana Legalization And Decriminalization Bills Delayed By Murphy 

If this act is not taken, according to the law, they cannot be charged if the alleged impaired drivers refuse to have a chemical test. The dismissal would eventually result in chaos and poor law enforcement. Such impaired drivers could not be held accountable and would be back on the roads again, risking the lives of hundreds of people.

The legislators of Albany must think about the message they are conveying to the younger generation out there. Already, as shown by the personal accounts of many teenagers, marijuana is nothing big for them and seems harmless.

Different treatment for impaired drivers than those drunken drivers would further strengthen this perception among people. Since neighboring states have already legalized marijuana for recreational and other purposes, New York seems to be next.

Strict Laws and More Investment in the Traffic Sector

Along with the modifications in the law to serve a better criminal justice system, there is a need to pass on better provisions to ensure safety on roads. No person should become a target of  people managing a 3,00 pounds vehicle while being impaired by marijuana, asserts the source.

ALSO READ: Denver’s Cannabis Ordinance Will Jeopardize Hard Earned Public Health And Safety

There should be provisions in the law to hold such people against the criminal act. To run a smooth traffic system, it is mandatory to design out complete traffic safety rules. There should be more people, funding, and resources to train the Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) officers and create awareness of the possible effects of drug abuse, including marijuana. As time has changed, the use of synthetic drugs has made it difficult to articulate a specific one; thus, the need for DRE officers has become as important as the need to include the provisions in the bill.

The legalization in New York for cannabis should be set straight from the start. Before the bill includes and assures safety on roads, the legalization of recreational cannabis is a non-starter. All the roads

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Cannabis Sales Reaches Skies, Set Highest Mark With $17.5 Billion Sales

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Cannabis Industry On Rise

The novel coronavirus has been devastating for most industries. For some industries, however, it was bliss. Concerning cannabis, 2020 was a breakout year. Across the United States, 15 states granted permission for adult use, while 35 states allowed medicinal use of cannabis. According to a recent  report by Forbes, there was a 46% incline in cannabis sales and use in comparison to 2019, with a budget of $17.5 billion.

Cannabis Sales Increase In Different States

Generation of sales or profit occurs from both medical and adult-use of cannabis. However, recreational or adult-use generates the highest portion of sales, especially in markets like the Colorado marijuana market. In Colorado, the sale of marijuana increased by 26 percent resulting in business involving $2.2 billion. 

According to BDSA, an improvement in sales of Oregon occur by 29 percent from 2019. Moreover, the Oregon market makes a business of $1.1 billion. The cannabis market in Illinois is under progress and development. Yet, it was able to achieve the highest sales in 2020. 

ALSO READ: Know Doctors Recommended Marijuana Tips

Moreover, during 2020 Illinois marijuana industry expanded from medical use to adult use. As a result of legalizing adult-use, an increase of $784 million occurs in sales. Besides, now Illinois is doing sales of over $1 billion in its marijuana market.

Sales in California and Florida also increased. $ 586 million increase in sales of marijuana in the California market occurs, a total of about $3.5 billion business is happening in it. Moreover, the rise of $473 million occurs in the Florida marijuana market. 

What causes The Rise In the Economy Of the Marijuana Industry And Market?

According to BDSA’s insights and analytics department, the cannabis industry is recession-proof and continues to progress. Moreover, it has the most potential of evolving and flourishing. 

According to Kelly Nielsen, the rise in the marijuana industry was due to three reasons. Firstly, during the coronavirus pandemic, dispensaries were major-businesses, and many individuals built their own. 

Secondly, more devoted customers enter big markets like California, Colorado, and Oregon. Third, multiple states legalize the use of cannabis for both medical and adult use. As a result, the overall sale of marijuana products increased remarkably in the previous year. 

Moreover, another major factor is that individuals have begun to consume cannabis in larger amounts. Furthermore, more and more people are now involved in marijuana consumption.

Cannabis users agree that their consumption of cannabis has increased by 25 percent since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, the demand for cannabis in legal markets has risen since legalization. According to Nielsen, alcohol penetration is 60 percent, while marijuana penetration is 50 percent.

Cannabis Industry Achieves Mega Sales Hits

Urban Leaf co-founder Josh Bubeck states that 2020 has been a tough year due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, Urban Leaf was able to enhance the market penetration of its cannabis products from 37% to 39%. Moreover, according to Bubeck, the company had its best sales during the last week.

Cannabis companies that have dispensaries at the places of tourists’ attraction suffer the most losses. Similarly, Urban Leaf‘s flagship location near Sea World suffered the biggest-drop. 

ALSO READ: Massachusetts To Enjoy Marijuana-Infused Seltzers

The legalization of marijuana enables doing business legally and prohibits doing illegal activities. As a result, legal-activities rise, and the pressure of high demand in legal setup rises. Similarly, the closing of illegal dispensaries moves more individuals towards legal dispensaries, leading to a further rise in sales. 

Like other cannabis companies, Sava also gets involved deeply in the market. Moreover, according to the founder of Sava, the company observes 60% more growth in their sales during 2020.

According to Andrea Brooks, people are getting comfortable with new legalization and decriminalization policies. Moreover, as people are getting-used-to cannabis policies, the demand for cannabis products is rising, and so are its sales. Despite large profits and sales during the pandemic, no marijuana industrialists want to relive the stressful 2020. 

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