Are you thinking of joining the Green Rush and opening your own marijuana retail business? Know your product — and know your business options!
Cannabis, Marijuana, or Pot?
In various jurisdictions “cannabis,” which is the name of the genus of a flowering plant some of whose subspecies contain the psychoactive chemical tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), is referred to as marijuana for legal purposes. For many in the medical marijuana community, “cannabis” is the preferred term because of its scientific connotations. “Marijuana” is a more colloquial term and, for various reasons, is sometimes seen as somehow slighting or derogatory. “Pot” — and the many other slang terms for cannabis — is used all the time informally but generally in business a degree of formality is appropriate.
Dispensary, Pot Shop, Compassion Club, Cannabis Center?
When medical marijuana first emerged in the 1990s, a lot of the activity operated as compassion clubs or dispensaries. The term itself has no special legal significance, although in medical situations, it can denote an in-house pharmacy in a hospital or other care facility. The key thing was that “dispensary” sounded medical but did not get the medical marijuana people in trouble with the private pharmacies in their area. Over time, the word has come to designate both medical marijuana and recreational marijuana stores. However, in jurisdictions where recreational pot has become legalized, stores tend to be called everything from pot shops to cannabis centers.
If you’re serious about going into marijuana retail business, do your research and know what to expect before you enter this very unique field. To help you navigate through various aspects of starting and running a marijuana retail business, we’ve published Start & Run a Marijuana Dispensary or Pot Shop by Jay Currie. Read it if you want to know where to start, how to write a winning business plan, and market, brand, and advertise your store. The book is available on our website, Amazon, Barnes&Noble, Chapters Indigo, and in better bookstores across the country.