Colorado’s marijuana industry has seen rapid growth in recent years, and while one might assume it should be smooth sailing ahead, the future isn’t looking so rosy these days. In recent months, pushback against the industry has grown, particularly in the recreational cannabis sector, threatening marijuana supplies and the future growth of the industry.
Nearly 3 of 4 Colorado municipalities have banned recreational cannabis businesses since the state’s voters gave adult-use cannabis the thumbs-up over three years ago. Just a few weeks ago, the Denver City Council approved strict caps on the number of retail stores and cultivation sites that can operate within its borders. Adding insult to injury for those trying to bring the public recreational and medical marijuana supplies, regulations are constantly evolving – and new ones added to the books – in big brother efforts by lawmakers grasping for control.
An aggravating business climate
Such efforts by city and state lawmakers make it exceedingly difficult for companies to expand, let alone make future plans for their businesses. Industry insiders have been left fearing for their livelihoods and feeling like they are in a constant struggle to keep afloat.
More roadblocks ahead
Though the recreational and medical marijuana supplies provided to the Colorado public earned the industry nearly $1 billion in state sales last year, there are substantial efforts underway to alter the landscape of the industry and rein-in the substantial growth expected. Among them:
- A proposed statewide ballot initiative to ban any marijuana product – medical or recreational – with a THC potency of greater than 16%.
This would effectively set fire to Amendment 64, wiping the vast majority of concentrates, flowers, and edibles off the shelves. Proponents of the measure, including prominent cannabis industry opponent Smart Colorado, state they aren’t trying to shut down the industry however, simply “raise awareness.”
- A proposed Pueblo County ballot measure to ban all recreational marijuana businesses.
117 existing companies could go up in smoke, as would any chance of future growth in this area. Growing Pueblo’s Future, comprised of Pueblo cannabis companies fighting against the measure, is calling into question the number of signatures required by the county clerk to qualify the measure.
- The House-approved bill to prohibit edibles in certain shapes, making them less appealing to kids.
Animal, fruit, or human-shaped edibles may be off the shelves if the Senate approves the bill – though some have already begun reworking the shape of effected edible products already.
The trickle-down effect
Each time a change is made resulting from prohibitionist groups or state and local lawmakers seeking to exert more control over marijuana supplies, the resulting changes in business models, packaging, and availability increases costs, ultimately trickling down to be pulled out of the consumer’s pocket book.
Tearing through all that red tape wearing you out? MMC Depot can help. Our packaging professionals stay on top of the latest legislative changes involving packaging, so that the marijuana supplies and labeling you need to meet regulatory requirements are within easy reach. No matter what new hurdle changes in legislation have thrown in your way, we’re here to help you come out on top. Contact us for assistance meeting changing packaging demands today.