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The Cannabis Catch-Up: Will Weed Tourism Take Off in Vermont?


Published August 17, 2018 at 4:30 p.m.

  • Kawee Wateesatogkij |
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Take note, Vermonters: Cannabis tourism is taking off in states that have legalized the drug.

Forbes this week examined some of the ways Colorado, California and Nevada entrepreneurs are working to attract cannabis-consuming travelers. A group got together south of San Francisco in May for a Ganja Goddess Getaway, replete “with yoga, educational classes, spa treatments — and unlimited cannabis in every form imaginable, including smoothies, body creams and vapes,” Nick Kovacevich writes.

The state also boasts “wine and weed” tours and “puff and paint” events. And in Las Vegas, where weed is banned from the Strip, a cannabis theme park will open in November.

“Cannabis attracts everyone, from lawyers to truckers,” said Deidra Bagdasarian, the cofounder of the Ganja Goddess event.

So will the green flow into the Green Mountain State? Probably not just yet. All those other places have one thing in common: a legalized cannabis marketplace. That is, you can legally buy weed. Vermont’s legalization is more of a half-measure. You can possess, grow and consume cannabis, but you can’t sell or buy it.

Here are some other cannabis stories we followed this week (or so):

August 9: Captive insurance companies based in Vermont won’t write policies for cannabis-related businesses because of marijuana's status as a Schedule 1 drug, according to David Provost, the Department of Finance’s deputy commissioner of the captive insurance division. [Gloria Gonzalez, Business Insurance]

August 9: Is legal weed in Vermont changing things for local medical marijuana dispensaries? Not so far, apparently. [Ike Bendavid, WCAX]

August 14: Could extracting THC and CBD from cannabis be as simple as making a cup of joe? Maybe! Scientists in Spain used an inexpensive espresso machine to perform quick, easy extractions. [Kyle Jaeger, Marijuana Moment]

August 15: Across the country, budtenders and edibles chefs are among the top jobs created by the cannabis boom. Ohio is seeing a wave of new job listings for its 56 licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. [Randy Tucker, Cincinnati Enquirer]

August 16: There was a primary election on Tuesday! What are winning candidates' stances on weed? Glad you asked. [John Young, Heady Vermont]

August 16: This one’s long, but worthwhile. "Higher Office: How Republicans Learned to Love Marijuana." [Alexandra Hutzler, Newsweek]

August 16: Sterling College recently held a weeklong hemp and CBD course called “Healing Hemp: Cannabidiol From Field to Product.” About 10 students took part. [Rob Williams, Heady Vermont]

August 16: Constellation Brands, a company that makes Robert Mondavi wine, Svedka vodka and Corona beer, has invested $4 billion in a Canadian cannabis company. Yes, billion with a B. [Michael J. de la Merced, New York Times]

August 16: Mormon opponents of Utah’s medical marijuana ballot initiative have filed a lawsuit arguing that the measure would create religious issues for property-owning church adherents who would be forced to rent to medical cannabis users. [Taylor W. Anderson, Salt Lake Tribune]

August 17: Speaking of weed tourism, Rob Williams at Heady Vermont recounted his recent trip to Denver, where he checked out the city scene. “Clean, well lit, and noticeably legit, Native Roots felt like just another shop doing its thing,” he writes of one dispensary on a main drag. [Rob Williams, Heady Vermont]

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