California Will Expand Its Marijuana Eradication Program

California is expanding its forty-year-old Campaign Against Marijuana Planting (CAMP) program. It's a response to a surge in black market cultivation that threatens people, the environment, and the legal market. The seasonal marijuana eradication program currently runs for 13 weeks each year and has eradicated more than 33 million illegal cannabis plants since its inception.

CAMP will become a permanent Eradication and Prevention of Illicit Cannabis (EPIC) task force that will operate year-round, Attorney General Rob Bonta announced last week. The task force will work with state Department of Justice prosecutors and other agencies to investigate and prosecute crimes, including labor violations, environmental destruction, and human trafficking.

This is “an important shift in mindset and in mission” said Bonta, who noted that the black market has completely eclipsed the legal one.

“It’s upside down and our goal is complete eradication of the illegal market.”

Counties across California have urged more robust action by the state to combat widespread illegal marijuana activity since penalties were downgraded under Prop. 64.