I'm sure processors and producers can relate when I say banking in the cannabis industry can be, more often than not, a daunting task. Fortunately, it seems that legalization and regulation are creating normalization in more areas than one. Slowly but surely, we're starting to see our industry treated as an equal among other businesses.
With every update to the rules, I spend hours digesting them. More often than not, I end up penning a lengthy email to the Oregon Health Authority (OHA), Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC), and Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP) asking for clarification. It feels like I am following the white rabbit from Alice in Wonderland to a mystical land of regulations, rules, and laws – seeking out the truth behind pesticide regulation. In this article, I am going to decipher these rules, but more importantly I want to breakdown the responsibilities of each state agency. As the old saying goes, knowledge is power. Well in our industry, knowledge also costs a lot of time, energy and money.
The first thing to understand when navigating Oregon’s expansive rule set, is everyone falls into two categories. A producer or processor will either fall into the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program or the Recreational Program. Even though both of these programs deal with the handling of cannabis products, it is important to note they have some different interpretations of the pesticides rules published by the OHA. To better understand why this is, we need to rewind the clock a little bit.