Oregon lawmakers are expected to consider legislation this year that would allow the state to export cannabis products into other state-legal cannabis markets, according to a Statesman Journal report.
The bill would be a cooperative effort between Oregon state Sen. Floyd Prozanski (D) and The Craft Cannabis Alliance, which defines itself as a member association of cannabis and allied businesses.
Draft language of the proposal would allow cannabis wholesalers to ship across state lines provided that Oregon’s governor reaches an agreement with the receiving state. Products would not be allowed to cross through states where cannabis remains prohibited, and product transport via airplanes would be prohibited.
Sen. Prozanski introduced similar legislation in 2017 but his proposal died in the statehouse.
“There are plenty of markets that would be thrilled to have world-class cannabis. But prohibition keeps us from sending it into those markets.” — Adam Smith, founder and director of The Craft Cannabis Alliance, via The Statesman Journal
The Oregon cannabis market suffers from an over-saturation of cannabis products, which has resulted in some product diversion to the black market. Meanwhile, wholesale and retail cannabis prices have plummeted.
According to Beau Whitney, a senior economist for New Frontier Data, allowing interstate exports “would either slow or stop the price declines, because there wouldn’t be any more excess.”
“It would create more of a market in which quality and branding and other things would come into play more so than just pure price,” Whitney told The Statesman Journal.
However, the proposal would be a risky step in light of the plant’s ongoing federal prohibition. Since the first state-legal markets launched in 2014, cannabis businesses have operated in accordance with the since-rescinded Cole Memo, which specifically forbade state-legal cannabis products from crossing state borders.