By Joanne Ostrow — Harry Smith returns to his Colorado stomping grounds to explore “Marijuana Country: The Cannabis Boom” on CNBC, a one-hour documentary sizing up the state one year after legalization.
Smith covers pot as a treatment for seizures in children (“Charlotte’s Web”), the trouble with dosing edibles, the problem of enforcing zero tolerance in the workplace, the black market, the big businesses hoping to franchise, and sales stats in general — all with a critical eye.NBC Correspondent Harry Smith and Bob Eschino, Incredibles Founding Partner. Photo provided by CNBC.
Most of these topics have been chronicled extensively by local and national media (The Cannabist reports 9 percent of the state’s population can be considered regular users and counts $573 million in pot sales for 10 months of 2014), but the attention to underground sales is insightful.
Those making deals without legal sanctions call it “donating” and “caregiving,” not buying and selling, Smith notes. Those who choose to avoid dispensaries and call a dealer, er, “caregiver,” spend about one-third the cost of legal recreational weed.
An outsider taking a peek might conclude there has been no disaster, none of the predicted chaos, in Colorado since legalization. The state seems to be finding its way. Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper tells CNBC, “When you’re doing this for the first time, there’s no template.”