Most people’s idea of a medical marijuana dispensary consists of shelves and shelves of buds, fun posters and other paraphernalia, plus the usual laid-back “vibes” associated with the world of cannabis.
Trulieve, a dispensary with branches in Tampa and other cities, looks nothing like the above scenario. This is due to Florida lawmakers’ conservative approach to approving medical marijuana. Oils, patches, and edibles are allowed, so long as the edibles don’t look like something that a child could mistake for a non-cannabis item, such as gummy bears.
But Florida’s lawmakers have made sure to forbid dispensaries from stocking any aspect of cannabis that can be smoked. Plus, based on the spartan appearance of Trulieve, whose stock consists of shelves of pills, patches and vaporizers, it might seem to the casual observer that decision-makers want medical cannabis facilities to look like medical facilities.
This apparently means no decor that might indicate any implied “counterculture” connections.
Florida’s cannabis restrictions have given both NORML spokesperson Justin Trekal, and area physician Dr. Christopher Newcomb, much pause. Trekal’s position is that Florida legislators are patting themselves on the back for how restrictive they can be. It isn’t just about prohibiting people smoking cannabis buds, but it’s also been about which people can qualify for medical cannabis.
Dr. Newcomb’s attitude is that the prohibition on smoking was “unwarranted,” and that he feels smoking marijuana, in some cases, makes sense. If people require instant relief from chronic pain for instance, smoking provides that. Edibles and other non-smoking methods, on the other hand, take time to get into the bloodstream.
Regardless of Newcomb’s disappointment with the way Florida legislators have worded medical cannabis legislation–he refuses to call it “marijuana” or “pot”–he believes Florida is taking the right steps, especially towards cannabis research and reducing opioid addictions.