California Legislators Defeat Ban on Cannabis Advertising

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Last week I reported the California legislature was meeting in special session, and that one of the measures moving forward included a somewhat strict prohibition on cannabis branding and labeling. As legalization moves forward and states invent new regulatory frameworks, we seem to be doing a bit of a balancing act regarding health and safety, particularly with youths.

I agree we need to minimize youth exposure to recreational substances, but I was opposed to the recent effort by many in the California legislature to enact such a strict ban on cannabis advertising. The proposed bill suggested cannabis images should not be used on merchandise such as hats and t-shirts, which young people have been known to wear.

Today, I am pleased to say that the bill proposed by Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) has failed.

From the LA Times:

“Opponents of Allen’s bill, including the California Cannabis Manufacturers Assn., said such a law would be a financial burden, depriving them of legitimate profits.

“The groups argued that the advertisement of medicinal marijuana should not be restricted in the same way as adult-use marijuana. The group wrote that the bill ‘undercuts a legitimate revenue center for cannabis licensees,’ and that it impinges on free speech.

“…The Assembly Appropriations Committee, which evaluates bills that will cost a lot of money, put the measure on hold without explanation.”

In an era when free speech seems to be under attack, its nice to see some legal weight being thrown in its defense. It’s also quite interesting to see the tide turning with respect to these kinds of decisions.

Now if only we can get rid of all the unnecessary extra “child safety” packaging with the sasquatch-sized environmental footprint….

Stay informed on the latest cannabis market regulations at the International Cannabis Business Conference happening in Kauai, Hawaii on December 1-3, 2017, and in San Francisco on February 1-2, 2018, and more!

advertising, ban, California


  • Once again we have the cart before the horse. If the new bar for child safety requires child proofing for this product that is not harmful to any human, and has never caused a death to a child, then we need to consider the safety of other consumer products that kill and or cause great bodily harm to people. If something is truly dangerous to children we should protect them. example: sugar processed foods kill thousands every year yet we let children consume it openly. In this latest study, led by Gitanjali Singh, an assistant professor at Tufts,
    Sugary drinks cause 184,000 deaths worldwide annually, including 25,000 deaths in the United States, according to a new study.
    The finding — a revised estimate of numbers first presented at a scientific meeting in 2013 — represents a tally of deaths from diabetes, heart disease and cancer that scientists say can be directly attributed to the consumption of sugar sweetened sodas, fruit drinks, sports/energy drinks and iced teas. Yet any child with cash can buy as much as they want. Apparently, the Cannabis rules makers are creating solutions for problems that just don’t exist.

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