PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — In 2014, Oregon became the fourth state in the U.S. to legalize recreational marijuana. Since then, a number of changes have come to the way cannabis products are sold.
Big changes came in 2020, with the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing faster and easier access to recreational marijuana to match with the swiftly increasing sales. However, there are still some changes coming to the local industry in 2023.
Starting Jan. 1, 2023, the Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission has a number of changes coming to recreational marijuana rules and legislative changes, impacting not only how it is produced but how it is bought and sold as well.
When buying or selling marijuana, OLCC has decided to allow the continuation of on-site delivery, which began in 2020, allowing retailers to operate walk-up or drive-up windows.
However, there are still rules about the presence of minors when using one of those on-site services. The OLCC prohibits the sale of marijuana if a minor is present in the vehicle unless that minor is over 18 with a medical marijuana card, or with a parent or guardian who holds a medical marijuana card.
Originally, the OLCC placed restrictions on sales and selling marijuana at discounted prices; however, some of those restrictions are being lifted.
According to the new rules, prices may be discounted, but those discounts can’t be reliant upon the purchase of other items, so dispensaries couldn’t hold a buy one get one half off sale, for example.
There is also a specific rule prohibiting discounts based on the purchase of non-marijuana items. An example of this provided by the OLCC says “requiring a person to buy something like an empty jar, to receive discounted marijuana (that goes in the jar.)”
When it comes to the production of recreational marijuana, the OLCC now requires a special work permit for anyone working in a lab who handles or secures marijuana; records the delivery, possession, sampling or testing of marijuana; or supervises anyone doing those activities.
Anyone working in those environments is required to have their permit by Jan. 1, 2023.
The OLCC is also expanding audit testing, ensuring the potency of products. They said this new process includes holding onto samples for 30 days so that samples can be retested to check for potency.
The OLCC also reminded in their rules update about the license moratorium for new permits.
These rule changes, along with a number of minor changes to grammar or formatting, take effect at the beginning of the new year, and the OLCC says that all marijuana licensees are responsible for reading, understanding and complying with the new rules.
Visit the OLCC website for the full list of new rules and changes.