Dozens of retailers started selling recreational marijuana on July 1 but a unique state law could quickly lead to empty shelves. The law dictates only alcohol wholesalers can transport pot from growers to store fronts for the next 18 months.
So far, fewer than 10 alcohol wholesalers have applied for pot distribution licenses and as of last week none had met the qualifications, the Nevada Department of Taxation said.
Most recreational retailers were previously licensed under a 2-year-old medical marijuana program and many were distributing to themselves. The medical marijuana dispensaries started stockpiling supplies months ago in an anticipation of high demand.
However, some of the 47 licensed retailers have reported twice as much business as they anticipated, said Nevada Tax Department spokeswoman Stephanie Klapstein.
“I have heard of some dispensaries running on fumes, if you will,” said Nevada Dispensary Association President Andrew Jolley.
The Nevada Tax Commission was scheduled to consider a new regulation Thursday in Carson City to license some pot retailers to serve as their own middleman if there aren’t enough alcohol distributors to do the job. [Read more at ABC]