The Week Ahead
(July 8, 2019)

An update on the WSDA hemp program, no WSLCB Board Meeting this week, and small business opportunities on the agenda.

This week may be our first opportunity to get a look inside the new headquarters of the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) @ 1025 Union Ave, Olympia, WA 98501 as all agency public meetings were cancelled last week. Take a look at the map when planning your next visit; parking is easier and there is a local bus stop directly across the street.

The Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) posted a bulletin to the Industrial Hemp Research Pilot email listserv on Monday July 1st announcing a substantial update to their website and progress on the revitalized hemp program.

With harvest quickly approaching we will be putting out more guidance on how to request a mandatory pre-harvest inspection and WSDA’s 2019 sampling protocol using whole plant sampling. Additionally, with the pilot program regulations having a sunset date of January 1, 2020, we are also busy preparing our state regulatory plan to submit to USDA. We anticipate having draft rules early fall to share with this listserv. WSDA will be utilizing this listserv as the main communication tool regarding a commercial hemp program.

In early May with the passage of SB 5276, we predicted an increase in applications for licensure with the hemp pilot program.  There are now 105 hemp licenses listed on the WSDA hemp landing screen, which Cannabis Observer scrapes each night for easier access and download via Workbench. You can hear the latest WSDA policy and cannabis program updates from agency staff at The Cannabis Alliance general meeting on Thursday July 11th and the Washington SunGrowers Industry Association (WSIA) annual meeting next Friday July 19th. I’ll be speaking about traceability and government transparency at both events.

Here’s a look at the week ahead.

TUESDAY: On Tuesday July 9th at 10am PT @ WSLCB, the weekly Board Caucus recurs [ agenda ]. The Board has scheduled a call with Prosper Portland’s Tory Campbell to learn about that city’s cannabis social equity program, last discussed during the June 18th Board Caucus.

WEDNESDAY: On Wednesday July 10th, the bi-weekly WSLCB Board Meeting has been canceled.

On Wednesday at 1:30pm PT @ WSLCB, the three-member Board and agency leadership convene their weekly Executive Management Team meeting, currently on a bi-weekly cadence. WSLCB Board Member Ollie Garrett and Director of Licensing Becky Smith are scheduled to present their findings on “Small Business Opportunities” [ agenda ].

THURSDAY: On Thursday July 11th at 10am PT @ WSLCB, the bi-weekly Marijuana Traceability Project (MTP) Integrator Work Session recurs. This is not a formal public meeting, but is open to interested parties.