Sure, consumers may like the cheap weed prices right now, but if growers start getting motivated to ship to black markets in neighboring states – the Fed will almost certainly intervene on weed being legal at all. So, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission just issued a report about all this, with some recommendations.
The OLCC report is required by law, and the intention is to call out problems just like these. Though, Oregon has been overproducing for some time, so there’s now a six year supply crowding backrooms throughout the state, and growers and retailers are scrambling just to stay afloat.
The OLCC report offers policymakers four possible responses, all having downsides. Firstly, to do nothing and allow the market to dictate which growers and retailers survive, or not. However, this approach would mean hiring more inspectors to make sure the oversupply does not stray to the black market.
The other three options would require legislative action The first of these would limit the amount of cannabis a license holder could grow, but there is concern there is no practical way to keep growers from buying multiple licenses.
The second of these would increase license fees, though this would only be effective if the increase is large enough to be felt, and this may have some unfair ramifications for growers.
Another option suggests OLCC cap the number of licenses or continue the current moratorium on granting licenses. This would put the OLCC in the position of picking winners and losers, which has people nervous, in and out of the agency.
The OLCC report was released just after Oregon’s Secretary of State issued findings that the state needs to strengthen its system for regulating marijuana sales.