Storefront Emblems Could Come to Pot Shops in City of LA

Walk into any cannabis dispensary in Los Angeles today and the odds are you’re walking into an illegal shop. Only around 184 dispensaries in the city are licensed. That’s less than 1 in 5.

To help consumers differentiate between legal and illegal businesses, two Los Angeles City Council members have proposed implementing the county’s Emblem Program for Authorized Cannabis Stores. It allows cannabis businesses to apply for an emblem, obtain a public health inspection, and then place the emblem in a visible location to verify their status.

"I have been working on getting this emblem program designed and implemented for the past few years because consumers have a difficult time discerning legal and illegal businesses by appearance and may be unknowingly doing business with unlicensed operators, many of which sell unregulated products that are tainted, contaminated or mislabeled, and could cause serious illness if consumed,” said Councilman Paul Koretz, who co-sponsored the motion with Curren Price.

“Establishing an Emblem Program will allow patrons to make an informed choice of where they want to shop and spend their hard-earned money. This initiative will provide a comfort level that they're at a business that is properly regulated and inspected by the county,'' said Price.

Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer praised the motion’s introduction. Adoption of the emblem program by the county’s largest city would advance public health and help ensure the safety of dispensary employees, she said.

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