Multiple Oregon Cannabis Retailers Fail Latest Sting Operation

Multiple Oregon Cannabis Retailers Failed Latest Sting Operation

Flickr / Spry / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

While central Oregon cannabis retailers passed the state’s sting operation on Dec. 19, 2017, with flying colors, retailers in the rest of the state didn’t fare as well in the latest sting operation.

On Jan. 10, 2018, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission announced that 16 out of 66 Oregon cannabis retailers failed its most recent minor-decoy operation that took place Dec. 20-21 and Dec. 28-29, 2017.

“These overall results are unacceptable,” said Steve Marks, Executive Director of the OLCC, in a press release. “One of the basic tenets of Measure 91 is the protection of children by discouraging their use of marijuana. Oregonians who voted for legalizing recreational marijuana implicitly told the cannabis industry to abide by public safety laws. Clearly they’re not, and we need to continue this type of enforcement activity.”

State law prohibits Oregon cannabis retailers from selling cannabis to those under 21, so the OLCC’s minor-decoy operation was meant to determine if retailers were abiding by this law.

During the sting, minor volunteers attempted to enter 66 Oregon cannabis retailers to buy cannabis, with the minor volunteers using their own legal identification cards that indicated they were underage.

On Dec. 20, in the Eugene-Springfield area, Buds, Sweat Leaf Cannabis and Hi Cascade sold to minors. On Dec. 21, in the Keizer-Salem area, The Grass Hut II, 7 Leaf Collective, Herbal Remedies 2, Hi Cascade and Re-leaf Cannabis Center sold to minors. That same day in Portland, La Mota, Roseway Organics, AmeriCanna Rx and Deanz Greenz also sold to minors.

On Dec. 29, in southern Oregon, Hijinx Cannabis Co., Cannabiz Experience, Rogue River Herbal and Rogue River Cannabis sold to minors.

The only bright spot of the OLCC’s minor-decoy operation was that central Oregon cannabis retailers again passed with a 100% rate of compliance.

For those retailers that sold to a minor, a first offense could warrant a 10-30 license suspension or a $1,650 fine; if they neglected to check ID before an attempted cannabis purchase, they could be hit with a seven-day license suspension or fined more than $1,100.

“This is a wake-up call to our licensed retailers. Oregonians have entrusted you with a responsibility that includes NOT selling marijuana to minors. By doing so you tarnish the cannabis industry and put your business in jeopardy,” Marks added.

Caroline Cahill was the Managing Editor of MJINews from June 2014 through February 2018. She earned her BA in Communications from College of Charleston and her MFA in Creative Writing from Virginia Commonwealth University. You can follow her on Twitter @CtheresaC.

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