A major industry group representing the alcohol industry urged lawmakers to federally legalize adult-use marijuana in a letter sent to congressional leaders on Wednesday. According to the WSWA, the current disparity between federal and state law not only has negative effects on both cannabis users and nonusers, but it will also have prolonged effects on public safety and health.
In its letter, the association emphasized two major points: first, cannabis regulation could be modeled after the current alcohol system, and second, piecemeal cannabis reform is unworkable, so legislators should take a comprehensive approach to the problem.
Additionally, the letter emphasizes the need for states to maintain their independence in deciding whether or not to legalize marijuana within their territory. Moreover, it endorses the proposal for the national government to permit interstate cannabis trade, which is a view that is broadly shared by lawmakers and business leaders in the majority of states.
The WSWA cited a 2021 policy brief that outlines the regulatory priorities it believes legislators should consult as they work to find a framework for legalization. According to the policy brief, legislators should borrow experiences from alcohol regulations and guidelines to create a marijuana regulatory framework that fosters public safety, innovation and industry competition.
WSWA outlined four major guidelines for federal control over a supply chain for marijuana for adult use: the federal licensing of marijuana growers, importers, testing labs and distributors; the control and approval of marijuana products; the effective and efficient collection of excise tax at the federal level; and the effective implementation of strategies to promote public safety.
In its policy brief’s conclusion, WSWA — which in 2018 spoke out in favor of states legalizing marijuana — explained its decision to offer advice on federal marijuana reform. According to the report, a secure and prosperous market has since emerged after the end of alcohol prohibition, one that meets the requirements of consumers and regulators alike.
Cannabis regulation and legalization bills at the federal level have twice passed through the House but failed in the Senate due to the latter’s failure to pass comprehensive reform. WSWA’s involvement, according to proponents of legalization, could strengthen efforts to persuade lawmakers to take the matter more seriously.
A significant distinction between the WSWA’s proposal and that of Chuck Schumer, Senate Majority Leader, is the allocation of regulatory responsibility. Advocates have expressed concern about the Senate proposal’s deference to the FDA, and it is likely that many stakeholders would find WSWA’s position on having TTB handle basic oversight to be more agreeable.
That jostling aside, a less controversial path is being explored by various enterprises, such as India Globalization Capital Inc. (NYSE American: IGC), in which efforts are being deployed to produce FDA-approved medicines from cannabis constituents such as THC for several indications.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to India Globalization Capital Inc. (NYSE American: IGC) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/IGC
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