With United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions criticizing Oregon’s cannabis policies and an Oregon marijuana processor busted in Nebraska recently, the black market in Oregon has been giving the state some bad press; however, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission is trying to change that with the launch of a new video series that aims to convince participants in the black market to go legal.
On Dec. 1, 2017, the OLCC announced the launch of the “Go Legal!” video series where OLCC licensees share how their participation in the regulated cannabis market enhances public safety, builds consumer confidence and bolsters Oregon’s economy, as state economists have forecasted cannabis revenues to hit $80 million or more per year over the next couple of years.
“This is a very modern and scientific industry, one that values community and transparency,” said Steve Marks, OLCC executive director, in a press release. “We hope that prospective cannabis business owners will appreciate hearing directly from their peers about the importance of operating within the regulated market.”
As the regulated industry grows, the OLCC and some licensees believe the black market in Oregon will shrink because illegal operators will either convert to legal operations or be squeezed out by participants in the state’s regulated market.
“The Go Legal campaign underscores the importance of marijuana consumers and the industry choosing to participate in the regulated market, while working together to eliminate the illegal market and its criminal activity,” said Mark Pettinger, OLCC spokesperson, in the campaign’s first video in the series.
“I feel like everything that we’re doing, especially people like myself that are really pushing for the regulated market, to create jobs and industry, there’s not going to be room for the black market,” said Rosa Cazares, Chief Executive Office of La Mota, a dispensary chain with 15 locations in the state of Oregon.