Posted to the Berkshire Edge on October 16, 2023.
By Kevin Pink, Deputy Director of Economic Development
Recreational Cannabis has come a long way since the voters of the Commonwealth legalized it in 2016. What was once viewed as the province of teenagers in basements has been steadily losing its stigma as more and more people try cannabis products for everything from recreation to help dealing with serious medical problems, or just to relieve aches and pains. The explosive growth of cannabis retailers across the state has put downward pressure on prices and made it easier than ever for adults aged 21 and older (as multiple respondents noted, the largest age group of new consumers is seniors) to give it a try. Product innovations, from new strains to new methods of delivery, continue to push the envelope with regard to how Bay Staters enjoy cannabis.
In contrast to the rapid pace of change on the industry side, regulations have not kept up with the speed of adoption and innovation. With the industry still contending with the deliberate pace of policy changes by the Commonwealth’s Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) and federal illegality, retailers find themselves in a bit of a push-pull situation.
We reached out to a number of Berkshire retailers to get a sense of the regional landscape, including the current state of the industry, what is and isn’t working, the status of some upcoming changes, and what has them excited and apprehensive for the future. Berkshire Roots’ Chief Revenue Officer Zach Helms, Bloom Brothers’ founder and CEO Nathan Girard, Canna Provisions’ co-founder and CEO Meg Sanders, Farnsworth Fine Cannabis Company’s co-founder and CEO Alexander Farnsworth, The Pass’ Chief Operating Officer Bill Packer, and Theory Wellness’ Chief Marketing Officer Thomas Winstanley were kind enough to share their insights with us.
Read the full story here.