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California Dreaming: Weed, Food & Alcohol Together

New bill could allow food, drinks, and cannabis in one place.

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PHOTO COURTESY OF WIKI COMMONS

California is considering a new bill that could bring together food, drinks, and cannabis in one place. The state’s assembly recently passed a bill that would allow local authorities to approve the sale of food and non-alcoholic beverages in legal cannabis dispensaries.

The bill, which now awaits approval from the state senate, also includes provisions to allow live music inside dispensaries, reports ABC News. Assemblyman Matt Haney, the bill’s sponsor, highlighted that even though legalized cannabis stores have been popular since the first legal sales in 2018, they still face competition from illegal marijuana sales. Illegal sellers have managed to bypass the regulations and offer food, creating an advantage for the illicit market.

Haney says he believes that current regulations are outdated and nonsensical, with many legal cannabis shops missing out on potential revenue due to these restrictions.

If the bill becomes law, food and drink consumption would be limited to well-ventilated indoor areas within cannabis shops. However, regular cafes and restaurants in California would not be allowed to offer cannabis in their establishments under the proposed legislation.

Municipalities would have the option to decline the implementation of the food and drink rules in dispensaries. However, some cities, including San Francisco, have already passed ordinances to permit such activities.

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