Washington D.C. Archives - Green Market Report

StaffDecember 22, 2022


The Daily Hit is a recap of cannabis business news for Dec. 22, 2022.


Trulieve Settles Worker Death Investigation With OSHA

Florida-based Trulieve Cannabis Corp. (CSE: TRUL) (OTCQX: TCNNF) announced Thursday that it’s reached a deal with the federal government that will ramp up worker protections at its manufacturing facilities nationwide. The investigation stemmed from the death of Lorna McMurrey, a worker at a Trulieve facility in Massachusetts. Read more here.

D.C. Council Approves Massive Medical Marijuana Program Expansion

Councilors this week unanimously approved an enormous expansion of the medical marijuana program to ostensibly get quasi-legal “gifting” businesses into the licensed medical side of the trade. And it’s all a workaround to how Congress has prevented city leaders for the better part of a decade from standing up a fully recreational cannabis market. Read more here.

Detroit Awards 33 Marijuana Licenses After Yearslong Legal Battle

The city of Detroit on Thursday announced it had awarded marijuana licenses to 33 companies, capping a yearslong legal battle about who gets to sell recreational cannabis in the city. There were 90 applications for dispensaries, “micro facilities” that grow up to 100 plants, and consumption lounges in the first of three rounds of applications. Read more here.

MediPharm Labs, VIVO Cannabis to Merge

Canadian marijuana companies MediPharm (TSX: LABS) (OTCQX: MEDIF) (FSE: MLZ) and VIVO Cannabis Inc. (TSX: VIVO) (OTCQB: VVCIF) are on track to merge next year in an all-equity deal, as long as shareholders and regulators approve. The newly combined company is projected to bring in $36.5 million in revenue per year and become profitable by the second half of 2024. Read more here.


Trulieve Cannabis Corp.

Trulieve Cannabis Corp. (CSE: TRUL) (OTCQX: TCNNF) closed on a commercial loan secured by a cultivation and manufacturing facility located in West Virginia for aggregate gross proceeds of $18.9 million. Trulieve will pay interest at a fixed rate of 7.3% for the first five years of the 10-year loan. After five years, the rate resets at five-year Treasury plus 3.5% for the remainder of the loan. Read more here.

Deep Roots Harvest

Dispensary workers from Deep Roots Harvest in West Wendover, Nevada, voted this week to join United Food and Commercial Workers Local 711. The workers voted 14-to-8 in favor of the union. Deep Roots Harvest is the only dispensary in West Wendover. It sits on the border of Nevada and Utah, serving patients and customers from both states and visitors that pass through.

Dave HodesAugust 1, 2022


In yet another indication that lawmakers are continuing to step up their interest in psychedelics, Miriam Delphin-Rittmon, the assistant secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use, sent a letter to U.S. Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-PA) in May, saying that the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), a branch of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, will be exploring the prospect of setting up a federal task force to address and oversee functions of a private-public partnership focusing on “complex issues” with psychedelics. 


The letter addressed 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) specifically, since its closest to getting FDA approval (expected in the first half of 2023). But Delphin-Rittmon also said that “we must explore the potential of psychedelic-assisted therapies” (including psilocybin) to address the mental health crisis in the country.

But even more intriguing to movers and shakers in the psychedelics industry was a pair of amendments that would increase access to psychedelic treatments for veterans and active-duty service members with mental health conditions. Those amendments—from Reps. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY)—were adopted by the House of Representatives on July 12, and added for consideration in the 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

In July 2021, a related amendment about allowing research into psychedelics, sponsored by Ocasio-Cortez, failed. She has been working on other legislation to allow more access to psychedelics research since she assumed office in Congress in 2019.

Ocasio-Cortez is on the same page with her New York colleagues. In May, two psychedelics reform bills were introduced by state legislators in New York on regulating the use of psilocybin, plus the training of facilitators and other clinical settings details. 

Crenshaw appears to be more focused on mental health than the substances used to treat it. He sponsored a bill in March 2022, that reauthorizes through 2027 support for crisis care available under the Community Mental Services Block Grant program for adults with serious mental illnesses and children with serious emotional disturbances that will be administered by SAMSHA. 

But the state of Texas has taken a particular interest in psychedelics for veterans, passing HB 1802 in June 2021, which provides for a collaboration of the Health and Human Services Commission with Baylor College of Medicine, to conduct a study on the efficacy of using alternative therapies, including the use of MDMA, psilocybin, and ketamine, in the treatment of veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.

The two new bipartisan amendments, fairly similar in wanting to allow further studies in psychedelics, are now awaiting passage in the Senate and, hopefully, eventual inclusion in the 2023 NDAA. 

In a floor speech Wednesday as reported in The Intercept, Crenshaw—a Navy veteran—pleaded with members of his party to support his amendment. “Many hear the word ‘psychedelics’ and they think of acid trips from the ’60s,” he said. “What we’re talking about here is the proven use of psychedelics to treat PTSD.”

Crenshaw and Ocasio-Cortez’s amendments were approved via voice vote shortly thereafter.

The two amendments come at a critical time for veterans. In June, according to “Forbes,” the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) launched clinical trials to study the effectiveness of psychedelic drugs including MDMA and psilocybin as a treatment for military veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder, addiction and other serious mental health issues. 

The VA is now conducting at least five studies to gain more insight into the promising drugs. One of the first clinical trials of veterans using MDMA for PTSD was conducted in 2011.

And along with the mounting decriminalization of psychedelics efforts in more states, access to psychedelics has become a slow but steady drip-drip-drip process that is picking up steam among both state and federal lawmakers. 

To get amendments like these two new ones over the finish line means working on an informed and data-heavy presentation for a lawmaker buy-in. That takes time, according to Kevin Nicholson, CEO of Ketamine Wellness Centers (KWC). “I think one of the benefits of being a little slower to the market is that the psychedelic community has taken some of the lessons learned from the cannabis industry,” Nicholson told Psychedealia. “They utilize that knowledge to make sure that they don’t put themselves in some of the same potholes or delays in certain areas that the cannabis people had. We can see where some of those barriers might be. So we can take a little different approach.”

KWC began operations as Ketamine Wellness Centers in 2015 with a single building in Phoenix, and then expanded into their first satellite office in Tucson in 2017 and set up clinics in Colorado, Washington, Minnesota. Now they have expanded to 13 clinics in nine states, and are looking to add more this year, Nicholson said.

He applauds the two amendments and was asked what he would say if asked to testify in defense of these amendments. “The biggest thing that I would bring up would be data,” he said. “We’re averaging right now anywhere between 1,000 to 1,100 ketamine infusions a month. The majority of these patients have tried and failed all other options up to and including electroconvulsive therapy. So they’re really left with no other option other than maybe trying another cocktail of traditional medications.”

He says that KWC can offer irrefutable data that shows significant improvements in patient responses, but also reductions in suicide rates. “So that data I think would be overwhelming to start with, because our success rate is north of 75 percent.”

He said that they are seeing more and more meta-analysis of smaller studies of psychedelics that are coming out on ketamine and other psychedelics. “I love the fact that there’s more interest, there’s more conversations, and we can ultimately help more people now in a mental health crisis that we’ve been experiencing over the last couple of years,” he said. “There are no better people than the men and women of our military and our first responders and all those people, that if we can reduce their rates of suicide and also all the other afflictions that they’re dealing with by using a very safe medication, it’s tremendously rewarding.”

Cynthia SalarizadehOctober 12, 2017


For anyone who truly understands the art of influence, they understand that the most effective form of communication for any brand, idea or movement is grassroots based and best achieved through basic word of mouth, and ideally in person. That is the secret sauce to influential bodies for anything I can think of.  This is also what defines our nation’s capitol, Washington D.C. This is the heart of where our federal government resides and therefore where cannabis requires the most influence and lobbying effort on a federal level.

In our fourth study for the Green Economics series, analyzed in collaboration with our partner data provider Consumer Research Around Cannabis, we took a look at the consumer profile and opinions of those who live and operate in the D.C. Market. We dove into what the patterns and data provided on their opinions and behavior. What we found was a little more than interesting indeed.

The data that was collected used a sample size of 1,368 survey respondents within the D.C. Market that representing an estimated 5,187,362 adults and includes adjacent portions of Virginia, Maryland, and West Virginia along with the District of Columbia. Of that group 8.0% of the market responded that they had purchased cannabis from a legal retailer/dispensary.

In response to what the numbers revealed for this market, Jeffrey Stein of Consumer Research Around Cannabis stated that, “I think it’s clear that the data debunks many of the negative connotations attached to cannabis use – whether for medicinal or recreational use.  They are well educated, have good jobs and are financially sound.  Cannabis consumer data like this should be a wake-up call to government officials and companies that have thus far ignored this growing consumer group.”

The legal cannabis consumer was 30% more likely to be employed full-time versus the average adult in the D.C. market. As far as the occupations for this consumer, we found that almost 32.3% are considered professional, 55.3 % are labeled “white collar” while only 7.5% were considered “blue collar”, 30.5% own businesses, are a partner in a business or are at the level of corporate officer. These are occupations that are far from what the old stereotype of a “stoner” was thought to be doing with their careers.

In regard to political affiliation, 48% of the D.C. market cannabis consumer consider themselves as Independents, which is 16% higher than the local DC market average.  They are less likely than average to have voted Democrat last time around (77 index, 23% less likely vs. the average DC market adult).  They are also slightly less likely to consider themselves liberals than the average (96 index, 4% less likely vs. the average DC market adult).

When looking at the income of cannabis consumers in the D.C. Market, we see that almost 76% of them make a household over $50,000 a year or more, with 37% saying they are making over $100,000. As far as education, the numbers were impressive. 68.3% have at least an undergraduate degree or more with 36.3% have advanced degrees, which is 47% higher than the market average for D.C.

What we found extremely interesting in this study, was that that 38% are more likely to have a government job than the average person. Of that amount of government employees, 64% approve of either legalized adult use or medical only regulation, with 11% disapproving of legalization of both. Almost 25% are of no opinion on the issue.

“Considering Washington DC is where our federal legislation is created, results that indicate a significant number of government employees favoring the legality of its consumption as well as consuming it themselves, is clear indication that prohibition is outdated,” said Stein.

Government employees represent 17.9% of cannabis consumers who use cannabis for relaxation when alone, 20.5% purchase cannabis to enhance their experiences on their free time and with friends, and 18.1% buy cannabis to use it for its ability to suppress depression and anxiety.

Of the people who visited a cannabis retailer or dispensary 3 or more times a month. 34.1% were government employees. This same group represented 31.2% of customers who visited 3 or more times a week. 37.3% spending between $100-299 on flower and 50% spending $300 or more on concentrates are government employees.

So, we can conclude that a large segment of the D.C market cannabis consumer is smart, comfortably employed, educated, a government employee or professional, and loves their concentrates! Let’s hope this sophisticated group can help influence on federal policy toward cannabis prohibition in a positive way. They are arguably positioned best to help influence advance the industry with better legislation best.

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