Marijuana Moment reports..
A pair of congressmen filed a bill on Wednesday that’s intended to help small marijuana growers compete against large corporations when cannabis is federally legalized, proposing to give them the ability to ship and sell products directly to consumers within and across state lines.
Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA) is leading the legislation—titled the “Small and Homestead Independent Producers (SHIP) Act”—alongside Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR).
As Congress continues to work toward ending cannabis prohibition, there have been concerns that smaller businesses will struggle to compete against the handful of multi-state operators that have the resources and infrastructure to quickly expand, threatening to further consolidate the market when the federal floodgates finally open.
The SHIP Act is designed to minimize that risk and maximize opportunities for those smaller farmers and producers.
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Small Marijuana Growers Could Sell Directly To Consumers Across State Lines Under New Congressional Bill
REP. HUFFMAN INTRODUCES BILL TO ENABLE DIRECT TO CONSUMER CANNABIS SHIPPING, PROTECT INDEPENDENT CANNABIS FARMERS
Washington, D.C. – Today, Representative Jared Huffman (CA-02) introduced legislation to enshrine the right for small cannabis producers to ship and sell their products directly to consumers. The Small and Homestead Independent Producers (SHIP) Act would allow small famers and producers to operate their agricultural businesses within and across state lines. The legislation is specifically targeted to support the smallest family farmers and provide them the certainty to sustain their businesses under a larger federal legalization law.
“Too often, the federal government falls behind, and the gears of Congress work too slowly to keep up with the pace of a changing economy,” said Representative Huffman. “Under my bill, folks in our state will be able to ship their products straight to consumers when the antiquated federal prohibition on cannabis is finally repealed. As large, commercial cannabis operations squeeze out local producers from the market, this legislation is critical for farmers to survive and expand their small businesses. We cannot leave our smallest family-farmers behind under full legalization.”
What Supporters are Saying
“The direct-to-consumer model is a necessary resource for any small-scale craft-producing community that is deeply tied to the land on which it creates — whether it produces wine, whiskey, cheese, beer, cannabis, or honey,” said Genine Coleman, Executive Director of Origins Council. “The legacy cannabis community that has worked so long in the shadows should have the opportunity to join the ranks of other artisan producers across the United States and enjoy the privilege of connecting personally with their adult customers. As is always true with each step cannabis takes towards legality, the greater community stands to reap enormous benefit in the process.”
“For small craft producers in nearly any context, direct-to-consumer shipping is the critical tool that enables a diversified market to survive and thrive. Cannabis is no different,” said Ross Gordon, Policy Director of Humboldt County Growers Alliance (HCGA) and Policy Chair of Origins Council. “The SHIP Act moves the conversation beyond the question of who can get a license to cultivate cannabis and addresses the practical reality of building an equitable and accessible market for small cannabis producers.”
“As a legacy cannabis producer and family farmer located in the heart of the Emerald Triangle, I see the direct-to-consumer retail pathway as the only future of my small farm, and indeed — of all rural communities like my own whose cultural heritage is rooted in craft cannabis cultivation and artisanal medicine making,” said Karla Avila, owner and operator of Flowerdaze Farm in Trinity County and Executive Director of the Trinity County Agriculture Alliance.
“The Parabola Center is proud to endorse the SHIP Act – the first federal marijuana bill we have ever endorsed. This is the only legislation so far that takes cannabis policy beyond the Big Tobacco model of industry domination and toward the craft cannabis model that benefits both small businesses and consumers,” said Shaleen Title, Founder, Parabola Center for Law and Policy.
The bill is cosponsored by Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Co-Chair and Founder of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus.
It is endorsed by the Origins Council, Humboldt Country Growers Alliance, F.A.R.M.S. Inc, Washington Sun & Craft Growers Association, Vermont Growers Association, Maine Craft Cannabis Association, Farm Bug Co-Op, Big Sur Farmers Association, Nevada County Cannabis Alliance, Mendocino Cannabis Alliance, Trinity County Agricultural Alliance, and the Sonoma County Growers Alliance.
Full text of this legislation can be found here.HUFFCA_059_xml