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NZ-Based Cannabis Clinic Launches Exit 420 Campaign

Exit 420
Image courtesy of the Cannabis Clinic


NZ-Based Cannabis Clinic Launches Exit 420 Campaign

A medicinal cannabis clinic in New Zealand creates a compelling 420 campaign based on a serendipitous road sign.

420 is recognized and celebrated by cannabis lovers around the world in all manner of ways. In New Zealand, a leading medicinal cannabis clinic is running a compelling “Exit 420” campaign based on a serendipitous road sign. The goal of the campaign, the clinic says, is part of its commitment to destigmatizing medicinal cannabis and championing accessible healthcare solutions nationwide. 

Exit 420: Your Journey Starts Here

The Cannabis Clinic, New Zealand’s largest healthcare provider dedicated to providing plant-based medicine, just launched the country’s first-ever 420 promotional campaign with nationwide billboards and a compelling video.

Co-founded by Dr. Waseem Alzaher and Lisa Peterson, the Cannabis Clinic is located in the Auckland suburb of Takapuna, which is accessible by leaving the motorway at Exit 420. The campaign slogan “Your journey starts here” is part of the clinic’s broader messaging of starting your journey to a better quality of life with medicinal cannabis.

“The Cannabis Clinic’s 420 Day billboards serve as a tongue-in-cheek approach as our head office is based off state highway exit 420 in Takapuna, Auckland,” said Dr. Alzaher in a press release. “And no, the building wasn’t strategically purchased because of this; it was a serendipitous event that makes new staff members and clients have a chuckle.’’ 

According to Alzaher, although 420 is generally an adult-use term, many people who use cannabis medically find that having legal access is a relief for them. “We bridge the gap for those who are doing things illegally for the right reasons,” he says. 

‘’The Cannabis Clinic has a pivotal role in reshaping New Zealand’s healthcare landscape; we are breaking down barriers of stigmatization,” said Dr. Alzaher. “Our dedication is to provide quality care to our patients but also highlight the significant strides we’re making in advancing medicinal cannabis accessibility across the nation.”

The Video

According to a spokesperson for the Cannabis Clinic, the video is multi-purposed: It’s a playful nod in recognition to 420 and cannabis culture and it showcases the beauty of Auckland, the city where it’s based. The video is a riff on the opening credits of HBO’s show The Sopranos, where protagonist Tony Sporano leaves New York City and travels back to his home in New Jersey. Instead, a well-groomed gentleman spots the Exit 420 billboard and is motivated to make the journey across Auckland’s harbor bridge to the Cannabis Clinic’s location on the North Shore.

Cannabis In New Zealand

Cannabis was marked as an illegal substance in New Zealand since 1927. Legal medicinal cannabis arrived in 2018 with the passing of the Misuse of Drugs (Medicinal Cannabis) Amendment Bill. Two years later, the Medicinal Cannabis Scheme came into effect on April 1, 2020. 

The number of medicinal cannabis patients in New Zealand continues to climb, with an estimated 266,700 Kiwis now prescribed various products in a range of consumption methods, from flower to oil to gummies.

“Medicinal cannabis is poised to become an integral component of modern medicine, regardless of differing opinions. We’re working to destigmatize the industry and to create more accessibility,” said Dr. Alzaher. “Some clients have faced unjust treatment from society and the healthcare system for seeking prescriptions. It’s our duty to take a professional stance and advocate for the utilization of this natural treatment option to potentially help more Kiwis achieve a better quality of life.”

On October 17, 2020, New Zealand had the opportunity to become the first country in the world to legalize cannabis via a national public vote. The cannabis referendum was held in conjunction with that year’s general election on the question of whether to legalize the sale, use, possession and production of adult-use cannabis. The referendum failed by the smallest of margins: “Yes” received 48.83% votes (1,406,973 votes) and “no” received 1,474,635 votes (51.17%).

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