Calls for a boycott of several prominent brands circulated on social media after two executives questioned the value of Michigan's MED caregiver system.
Growing outside the licensed industry, by caregivers or homegrow hobbyists, can encroach on corporate revenue. Michigan has 30,000+ caregivers serving 250,000+ patients and they remain a source of frustration for some companies with a presence in the state.
- On May 10, Ryan Ori, an executive at grower Six Labs said in a podcast interview “We’re competing against people who are not only cheating, but putting the public at risk, and these are tax dollars not going into your coffers.”
- Steve Linder, executive director of the Michigan Cannabis Manufacturers' Association(MCMA), added that caregivers "don't test, don't create jobs and don't pay taxes." (Neither Six Labs nor Linder responded to requests for comment. MCMA's web site also reportedly went dark.)
While meaningful action action Michigan caretakers seems unlikely, homegrow activists on social media still called for a boycott of brands affiliated with MCMA.
- Their targets include prominent multi-state brands including Kiva Confections, Wana Brands and Sherbinskis which have partnered with MCMA members.
- Kiva and Wana, which have partnerships with MCMA member High Life Farms, declined to comment. High Life didn't respond to a request for comment.
- In a statement to WeedWeek, Sherbinskis founder Mario Guzman wrote "We stand with caregivers." He didn't reconcile the statement with Sherbinskis' partnership with MCMA member Common Citizen, which didn't respond to requests for comment.
- At least one MSO, Pleasantrees, discontinued its membership in MCMA.
Bottom line: Thus far consumer boycotts haven't been a meaningful force in the cannabis industry. It's not clear if this one has any traction.
- Florida's Supreme Court ruled that a challenge to state regulations, which have given rise to a market dominated by a small number of companies, did not have a "substantial likelihood of success."
Tampa Bay Times