The future is bright for AZ MMJ patients and companies alike; recent legislative and judicial decrees in the state are paving the way for a stronger, healthier market.
The future is bright: at least for cannabis patients and businesses in Arizona. With the recent landslide decision by the Arizona Supreme Court in State of Arizona v. Rodney Christopher Jones, Arizona patients and businesses can once again consume and produce a wide array of extracts and oils made from the cannabis plant in safety.
The Jones case hinged on whether the AMMA was intended to include resin extracts in addition to the dried plant material. The AZ Supreme Court affirmed that the “definition of marijuana includes both its dried-leaf/flower form and extracted resin”, solidifying the legal footing of many of the most effective, popular and profitable products in Arizona’s medical cannabis market.
This ruling has enormous consequences for patients and licensees alike in Arizona. For patients, the ruling represents a reaffirmation of the state’s commitment to offering patients alternative forms of medicine. Additionally, it ensured that countless patients around the state will continue to access their life-saving medicine without interruption, and without resorting to less-effective leafy forms of marijuana.
Cannabis businesses across the state are also breathing a sigh of relief in the wake of the ruling. While businesses across the state adopted a ‘business as usual’ approach throughout the duration of the Jones case, a stable regulator and legal landscape will only serve to bolster the cannabis businesses in Arizona.
With the question of the legality of concentrates now firmly in the rearview, many cannabis advocacy groups and trade associations are setting their sights on 2020, gathering signatures to get the Arizona Marijuana Legalization Initiative on the ballot for the 2020 elections. The 2020 initiative would legalize possession, consumption, cultivation and sale of marijuana, while allocating revenue from additional sales taxes to the school and healthcare systems. Additionally, the initiative proposes to provide for the legal relief of legal charges for prior marijuana offenses.