There has always been a conflict with the law when it comes to edibles in Hawaii. For some time, edibles weren’t permitted under the state’s medical offerings, even though it has a thriving medical market.
On July 10, the state legislature officially passed a bill that legalizes edibles. Products will be hitting the shelves of the island’s eight licensed medical cannabis dispensaries. As soon as Governor David Ige signs the bill into law, then the state will get to access its edible market.
“Passage of the bill is a victory for the state’s 30,798 medical cannabis patients,” Randy Gonce, Hawaii Cannabis Industry Association program director, said in a press release regarding the new bill.
“Coronavirus has prompted more patients to seek ingestible forms of cannabis to replace inhalation due to lung health concerns. So the approval of edibles is good news. Hawaii will now join 34 of 35 legal cannabis states that allow for remediation of cannabis plant material for biotic reasons, under specific conditions, as allowed by the DOH.”
The first time Hawaii legalized, the edibles were not in the list of approved dispensary products. The state legislators were very concerned about the edibles. They worried that edibles would trigger early consumption by children. The primary colors of some gummy edibles and packaging can look similar to candy.
But what prompted them to eventually pass the bill? It was the fact that the majority of cannabis patients prefer ingesting marijuana through edibles. This is because it has holistic effects. Ingesting is a safe way of taking it since it doesn’t involve smoking. It is also more convenient because it is discrete and no accessories are required.
The economic challenges faced by Hawaii due to the Novel Covid-19 coronavirus are similar to every state in America. Cannabis industry analysts predict that medical and recreational or Adult-Use cannabis will be on the November 2020 ballot for each state who has not yet legalized. The tax revenues from cannabis sales will help many states weather the economic impact of the pandemic.
“We were hopeful that the bill would come to be. Serious doubts existed that it would, based on the circumstances,” said Diana Hahn, communications director for Hawaiian Ethos, a Hawaiian dispensary that has made it through the COVID-19 pandemic. The dispensary will start offering edible and drinkable products when this bill gets signed into law.—Diana Hahn, Communications Director, Hawaiian Ethos
“The timeline for edible products to roll out under this new legislation is still not known. The bill that should be signed by the governor grants the DOH the ability to create rules around edible products,” Hahn said.
“Until the DOH releases those rules, dispensaries will not be allowed to sell edibles. So many of our patients have requested edibles,” she continued. “It’s great that the Legislature heard this request from constituents and delivered. On the mainland, edibles represent a significant and growing amount of revenue for dispensaries. We believe this will be true in Hawaii as well.”
Hawaiian Ethos is a vertically licensed cultivator, processor, and dispensary retailer on Big Island in Hawaii. They have two retail dispensaries located in Kailua-Kona and Waimea.
Apart from changing the game for edibles, this bill will also make it possible for publicity for educational and scientific events surrounding cannabis to happen. In the past, there were no such events that occurred. After this bill, cannabis news USA will have many activities to report happening in Hawaii.
The state of Hawaii still has a long way to go before they achieve similar milestones to other states. Still, with the bill in place, this is a great victory for patients within the state. In all consumer age groups, edibles are a preferred choice. And Hawaii’s registered patients would love to get edibles stocked as soon as possible in medical marijuana dispensaries.