In January 2015, cannabis became legal for medicinal use or decriminalized in 27 states and Washington D.C. Colorado allows legal recreational weed sales with Alaska and Oregon joining Colorado in 2016. Twenty-three other states prohibit marijuana use entirely.
Under the Federal Controlled Substances Act – passed in 1970 – it has been illegal to manufacture, distribute or possess marijuana in the United States. However, in 2013, the United States Justice Department indicated it would not challenge Colorado or other states on laws legalizing cannabis.
These patchwork laws have created confusion and consternation for casual users but also create numerous business opportunities for interested entrepreneurs.
This post is not an opinion on the merits of legalizing marijuana, weed, pot, Mary Jane, cannabis, 420 or any other term used. As a small business blog, Homepreneurs posts options and ideas, not editorials.
If so inclined, one can do the obvious – grow pot plants at home or in an approved location.
There are other options:
– Software and applications – mobile apps are popular for any transactional business, cannabis or not. Write and sell one that is customized for pot growers and distributors.
– Consulting – many industries use consultants to get started and cannabis is no exception. Do you know the rules and regulations? The ins and outs of growing and distributing? Risk management and insurance plans? If the answer is no, hire a consultant. If you know all answers, become a consultant.
– Real estate – pot needs to grow somewhere, be stored securely, and be sold in retail stores. Each needs real estate expertise and potentially, knowledge of local zoning laws.
– Security – like any cash-flush business, marijuana and its proceeds are at risk of theft. Start up a security company to guard the goods.
– Tourism – much like medical tourism, cannabis tourism is taking off. Other than a great state to visit, Colorado with its liberal weed laws, attracts many visits just for its cannabis-friendly environment.
There are other options: cannabis-infused products, restaurants and cafes, baked goods, pot-friendly bed and breakfasts, and many more.
According to Forbes, legal pot will be worth $8 BILLION dollars by 2018. Wrap your stoned brain around that figure and get started!