Business of Cannabis, the host of quarterly events and annual cannabis conferences in North America and a premier publication of cannabis news, is gathering an esteemed group of leaders, policymakers, industry pioneers and investors for its second annual Business of Cannabis: New York conference. The one-day event will take place at the New York Academy of Medicine on November 3, just as New York’s Office of Cannabis Management is to begin distributing cannabis retail licenses.
Delays for New York’s Adult-Use Cannabis Market Launch
New York’s recreational cannabis market is still not off the ground 18 months after the passing of the state’s Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act, which is touted as one of the most equitable and robust programs in the US. The bill prioritizes racial equity, reinvesting 40% of tax revenue from adult-use cannabis sales into minority communities most impacted by the War on Drugs and automatically expunging or resentencing people with previous marijuana convictions that are no longer criminalized. The law also sets a goal of awarding 50% of all adult-use cannabis licenses to social equity applicants, which includes but is not limited to BIPOC, women and veterans.
However revolutionary, the rollout has proven burdensome. Originally expected to launch in the spring of 2022, bureaucratic delays have pushed back New York’s timeline. As voters in seven states get ready to vote on cannabis legislation, all eyes are focused on whether New York will remain a model for others to follow, or become a cautionary tale.
Residents of legal age in Arkansas, Missouri and Oklahoma will vote on the legalization of adult-use cannabis while those in Maryland, North Dakota and South Dakota will vote on decriminalizing cannabis. Nebraska Secretary of State Bob Evnen recently ordered a recount of the petition signatures acquired for the ballot proposal to legalize medical marijuana in the state. If all of these ballots are passed in November, it will represent a huge step forward for sensible drug policies which defend the rights of patients and users in the country. It would also mean a large influx of addressable consumers for the adult-use cannabis industry.
New York’s Cannabis Future
Business of Cannabis: New York will bring together 400+ leaders focused on creating the most successful cannabis market in the US. With a focus on three core pillars—social equity, policy and retail—curated content sessions will cover:
- The effectiveness of Governor Hochul’s $200M social equity fund
- New York’s Cannabis Control Board license application process
- The habits and preferences of the modern cannabis consumer
- Building an ethical and socially responsible industry that protects consumers
- Technology innovations on the horizon and how they will shape how cannabis companies do business
- The future of New York’s medical marijuana program
- New Jersey’s adult-use market roll-out and performance, and how it might impact New York’s industry
“The program at this year’s Business of Cannabis: New York is designed to challenge leaders on the best route forward while educating, connecting and motivating delegates to shape the future of New York’s cannabis industry,” said Stephen Murphy, co-founder of Prohibition Partners. “We’re approaching an important election season that will significantly impact the cannabis industry. I look forward to engaging with key industry stakeholders to discuss the future of New York’s promising market and the significant impact it will have both in the US and around the world.”
The opportunity of New York’s cannabis market is staggering. The state’s recreational market is projected to be worth $4.4B by 2025, overcoming Colorado’s established market that is estimated to reach $3.8B that same year. Approximately 19.41 million people live in the state of New York, with 8.9 million—nearly half of the state’s population—living in Manhattan. Cannabis has been an established part of New York’s culture for years, making for a potentially massive addressable market.
Tremaine Wright, Chairwoman of the New York State Cannabis Control Board, spoke to the injustices from cannabis prohibition they are now striving to correct.
“For decades, an unjust cannabis prohibition depleted this country of opportunity and denied communities access to resources,” Wright said. “We have set our sights on demonstrating how an equity-driven market reinvests in all communities creating the most inclusive cannabis industry possible. I’m excited to update attendees at Business of Cannabis: New York on our efforts in the Empire State to build a cannabis market that works for all New Yorkers.”
About Business of Cannabis
Since 2017, Business of Cannabis has highlighted the companies, brands, people and trends driving the cannabis industry in North America. Powered by Prohibition Partners, the Business of Cannabis team brings over 30 years of public and strategic communications, content and campaign creation, and deep sector expertise, relationships and insight.
For tickets and more information on sponsorship and speaking opportunities at Business of Cannabis: New York this year, visit: cannabisnewyork.liv