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Nevada Pot Sales

Retail sales began today in Nevada, mainly Las Vegas and Reno. They hold the record for passing an initiative to opening stores collecting tax money, 7 months. Whether wise or not they did this by cutting the regulatory bullshit, skipping a lot of the issues important in other states, in the interest of generating income to the state.

We’ll see how well that strategy works. I’m always looking for what states do to contribute to the body of knowledge and experience in de-prohibition. This strategy is worth watching, but they are going to contribute even more because of their unique situation in the US. They’re expecting 2/3 of cannabis sales will be to tourists. Which means that their customer base will be the biggest in the west until California comes online.

When the previous four states began selling cannabis, the customers were somewhat experienced and the operators had some experience and knowledge in the subject. That’s not the case in Nevada: they are predicting their customers will be inexperienced and ignorant. I concur with that prediction.

Smoking pot on the streets is illegal everywhere in the west, and has a very costly fine. Smoking in your hotel room subjects you to substantial de-odorizing fees, plus a costly fine. Taking a stash back home can lead to federal trafficking charges (felony), as well as a sanction from your home state depending on where you are. Edibles are attractive to avoid a lot of this, but the risk of “over-consumption” is high with inexperienced consumers, leading to a spike in emergency room visits.

These are lessons learned from the other states. If you take those lessons, combine it with the inexperience of the customers, and the holes in the regulatory structure, I’m watching carefully how this works.

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