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A recent article by the New York Times details the chronology of the current coronavirus pandemic. You can easily track how COVID-19 has spread to over 170 countries and the implication this has had on the global economy.
More countries are taking radical measures to reduce human contact through social distancing. Some countries have gone as far as declaring a state of emergency and instituting a lockdown. As a result, streets are empty, businesses are closed, and the effects of a looming financial crisis are already being felt.
While closing down businesses, most local and national governments have spared essential services such as medical facilities. In a surprising move, the legal cannabis industry has remained functional after being declared one of the vital functions. In some places, however, the cannabis shops were forced to close down, which led to a backlash from various organizations and institutions.
San Francisco, for example, initially excluded marijuana dispensaries from the list of the essential services. This led to a protest from various points, which eventually led to the reopening of the dispensaries after they were added to the list.
Are marijuana shops an essential service?
The looming question, however, is if pot shops are essential, in a time where social distancing is highly encouraged –and in some regions, strictly enforced.
There’s a case to be made on both sides of the divide. On the one hand, some argue the cannabis dispensary should be closed down, as they’ll only encourage more human traffic. Consequently, this would lead to more people being exposed to the COVID-19 epidemic.
On the other hand, however, some support the move by most state and national governments to include the legal cannabis industry as one of the essential services. The argument is cannabis has an array of both psychological and physical benefits that could prove helpful during the time. For instance, some people claim taking marijuana helps them relax, which then improves their coping mechanisms. Some have gone as far as advocating for marijuana to be used in the suppression of some of the coronavirus symptoms, such as fever.
Whichever side of the divide you lie, it is evident that most governments – and citizens are opting to keep the legal cannabis industry running.
Will COVID-19 affect the legal marijuana industry?
Initially, most people were not worried as they thought the pandemic would pass over after a short while. However, with the growing cases of infections and deaths from the virus, it is slowly sinking in that the pandemic may not be as mild as most thought or anticipated.
It is leading most people to stock up on their cannabis supply. Consequently, this will lead to high demand for the product while the supply is still limited. As a result, this will lead to a shortage of cannabis products in the market.
Additionally, it is essential to note the correlation between the closure of manufacturing firms in China. This set back has led to a ripple effect that has been felt the world over, including in the marijuana industry. Some of the products used with cannabis, such as vape pen batteries and cartridges, have experienced a shortage, as most of these products are sourced from China.
Is the cannabis industry a lifeline?
There have been cases where cannabis has come to the rescue and helped control the spread of coronavirus. One such example is California, where a leading extract maker in the cannabis industry provided hand sanitizers to medical professionals and health centers. Additionally, there have also been cases where marijuana dispensaries have come out to help out with gloves and other essential supplies.
The COVID-19 epidemic will affect all sectors of society, and marijuana is not spared. However, from what can be seen, the legal cannabis industry may –to some extent, help in the containment of the virus. The aforementioned extortion company is just an example of how the marijuana industry can help. It would be wise, therefore, to consider looking at the different ways to aid the cannabis industry in combating coronavirus.
In the meantime, you may want to stock up on enough cannabis, as the COVID-19 may lead to the lack of cannabis products in the market.
Most dispensaries are offering Delivery
Contact your local dispensary to find out their delivery options.
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