Despite the progress made on cannabis policies within legislative chambers and ballot boxes across America, the rollout of successful regulated cannabis markets has been stymied in several jurisdictions, and the illegal market has remained strong.
Simply put: if cannabis consumers cannot conveniently access the regulated market, they will continue to purchase from the illegal market, be it the unlicensed dispensary across the street, or the dealer around the corner.
Reasonable tax rates, availability of delivery services and social consumption lounges, as well as rational advertising standards that allow licensed businesses to differentiate themselves from illicit operators also play a role in the strength of the legal cannabis market.
No matter the city or state, a successful launch of a legal, adult-use cannabis systems hinges on consumers accessing the products and brands they need or want without having to drive into a neighboring town, navigate the depths of a far-off industrial park, or wait in long lines at the small handful of licensed retailers fortunate enough to receive state and local-issued licenses.
Until policymakers across the country realize this and treat cannabis businesses like a legitimate industry, cannabis consumption will remain in the shadows.
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