Washington Changes New Marijuana Laws

Washington Governor just signed a bill updating marijuana regulations.

A few exciting changes made by Washington with Senate Bill 5131 will go into effect July 2017. And some of those changes could surprise you. For instance, it is now legal to share a bowl. Medical marijuana card-holders are now allowed to buy seeds and clones directly from producers. And, the state is now required to investigate the possibility for recreational consumers to grow weed from home.

Washington cultivators are also moving toward organic standards. In addition, dispensaries will have limited advertising. This is an effort to minimize the appeal of weed to youths. Dispensary owners are also getting a present. owners can now open 5 locations, the old limit was 3.

Washington kept their strict no public advertising rules. The people don’t want businesses to market weed that would appeal to children. Meaning no putting pot advertisements on toys and movie cartoons, no advertising cannabis out of state, or work at a dispensary before turning 21. And business owners who don’t open shop after two years of gaining a license will forfeit their permit.

It is finally legal to share a bowl.

In 2012, weed was legalized but no one could share a bowl, not even a single leaf. Now, anyone 21 years or older can gift to another adult 21 years and older cannabis. Up to a ½ oz. of flower, 8 oz. of solid edible, 36 oz. of infused liquid, or 3 ½ gm of concentrate. If the exchange is happening in public, then the products must remain in their original store packaging.

Consumers can also buy seeds from producers.

Before, cultivators could only sell seeds and clones to dispensaries. Now, patients can buy their seeds and clones from cultivators. This new change in the bill gives leeway to medical marijuana patients who prefer to grow their own plants from seeds.

Recreational home growing is still not allowed, yet.

The state liquor and cannabis board must conduct a study for recreational plant production. They must report their findings by Dec. 1, 2017. Until then, home growing is considered taboo.

Organic-grade cultivation is a new must.

Currently, cultivators are not allowed to use the word ‘organic’ when it comes to describing their cannabis products. However, the new bill suggests that cultivators attempt to match to the extent practicable to the Federal Department of Agriculture’s Nation Organic Program.

There is an advisory board being assembled to help draft the rules and regulations needed to comply with the FDA labeling.Anyone who wishes to take part in the advisory board should contact the WSDA Organic Program at [email protected] for consideration.

Other important changes to the bill.

When it comes to advertising rights, it’s about the children. Washington wants to protect children from seeking out weed because it looks cool. They don’t want commercial mascots or cartoons with marijuana related images on them.

Its ok to have billboards with a business name, location and description of business on the sign. But no weed images are allowed on anything including billboards, toys, costumes, or spiny signs. It may be legal everywhere in Washington but that doesn’t mean they want it marketed everywhere. 

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About Alley Rhodes

Alley Rhodes is a cannabis new correspondent. She writes about MJ news, culture, cannabis cups, medibles and more. Alley is also an avid glass collector, web developer, and computer tech.

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