See inside the inaugural 'Harvest Cup,' the marijuana trade show drawing marijuana activists and advocates to Worcester
Hundreds of marijuana activists and advocates headed inside Worcester’s DCU Center for this weekend’s inaugural “Harvest Cup,” a trade show and competition celebrating one year of legal pot in Massachusetts.
Massachusetts voters broadly legalized marijuana for adult use in November 2016, and the next month, possession and home-growing provisions went into effect.
Selling it remains illegal, as state regulators on the new Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission work on the structure to oversee retail pot shops due to open in July 2018. Marijuana is still illegal on the federal level.
But gifting the controversial substance, as well as carrying up to an ounce outside your primary residence, is legal under the law approved by voters.
The weekend-long trade show, joining similar events happening with greater frequency in Boston, featured sellers of pipes, ties for plant-growing, lighting equipment, and marijuana-themed t-shirts, among other things.
George Richards, a real estate attorney, also had a booth at the Harvest Cup.
He’s partnered with a lobbyist, Tara Hopper Zeltner.
“People are going to need legal services,” he said, pointing to the “regulatory maze that is still being developed as we speak.”
Out of 80 clients, five to seven are interested in recreational marijuana or have worked on the medical marijuana side, Richards said.
“It’s obviously an emerging area,” added Richards, who has worked in real estate and zoning in Natick for 25 years.
Massachusetts voters legalized medical marijuana in 2012 and placed it under the state Department of Public Health. The Cannabis Control Commission will eventually take control of the medical marijuana program along with the regulatory structure for retail pot.
There’s misinformation and paranoia about marijuana, and it’s still viewed as a dangerous drug, according to Richards. “I totally