Ever since the San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club was established in the United States, the public awareness of the beneficial properties of cannabis has grown exponentially. Nowadays, it is possible to find both large and small dispensaries in most states and territories. While the earliest significant changes to federal legislation started happening in the late 1970s, comprehensive reforms have only taken place during the past few years.
We often believe that online markets will end up replacing physical stores, but when it comes to both recreational and medical cannabis, many customers still prefer to visit a local dispensary and be advised by an expert who can recommend the best product for their specific needs. Therefore, we can only predict that marijuana dispensaries will continue to appear across the entire country throughout the following years.
Are Marijuana Dispensaries Legal in the United States?
While the legality of cannabis products and stores in the country has been the subject of a strong debate, it is nowadays possible to legally open a marijuana dispensary which complies with both local and federal regulations. Nowadays, more than twenty states in the country have regulation schemes for medical marijuana dispensaries, while seven more regulate recreational shops. Furthermore, the territories of Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and other dependencies have also legalized the consumption of cannabis products, setting the ground for new dispensaries to open their doors.
In the states where medical marijuana dispensaries are regulated, local health providers cooperate with them to prescribe cannabis-based products for a wide range of conditions. This has positive effects not only for consumers, but also for the local economy which benefits from a new growing market that attracts more investors and entrepreneurs every year.
Which Products can be found in a Marijuana Dispensary?
Depending on whether your home state has legalized marijuana for medical or recreational use, the products at your nearest dispensary will vary from those which fall under different jurisdictions. Medical marijuana shops sell only specific strains and usually require a prescription from a licensed doctor. Some of the most common restrictions include limits on the THC concentrations and other psychoactive components which are naturally present in the hemp plant.
On the other hand, recreational dispensaries often have a much wider variety of products for their customers. Unlike head shops, these establishments have tenths and often hundreds of different strains of marijuana plants which can be found in long menus with detailed descriptions of their effects and usage recommendations.
At every medical or recreational dispensary, there is at least one budtender who is there to guide you and provide expert recommendations on the products and prices offered by the facility. Just as in other industries, becoming a budtender requires extensive preparation and a deep knowledge of the chemical components of the different marijuana strains.
Finally, apart from pure cannabis plants, medical and recreational dispensaries might also offer a few edibles, sublingual tinctures or topical products infused with CBD and other components of the hemp plant. These alternatives are recommended for those who want to enjoy the beneficial properties of marijuana without its characteristic smell.