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Mass. Vaping Ban Takes A Bite Out of Legal Weed Business

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Marijuana retailers in Massachusetts say the state's ban on vaping products is taking a bite out of their business. The vaping ban is also having an impact on the supply of legal weed.

Some cannabis retailers say since the ban went into effect their customers have been shifting from buying vaping products to buying what's known as "flower" — buds from a marijuana plant.

That's echoed by Steve Hoffman, chairman of the Cannabis Control Commission.

"The vaping ban has clearly had an impact in terms of supply since, you know, that [vaping products] represented about 30 percent of what was being sold at the stores," Hoffman said. "And that is obviously no longer the case. And I think that's created a little bit of a of a product shortage. But I'm pretty comfortable people are adapting to it."

Hoffman, who supports the vaping ban, said he thinks it will draw people to the legal marijuana market because of concerns over the health risks of buying products illegally.

But at least one cannabis company CEO, Brandon Pollock of Theory Wellness, said he thinks some of his vaping customers are turning to the black market because of the ban.

Nancy Eve Cohen is a senior reporter focusing on Berkshire County. Earlier in her career she was NPR’s Midwest editor in Washington, D.C., managing editor of the Northeast Environmental Hub and recorded sound for TV networks on global assignments, including the war in Sarajevo and an interview with Fidel Castro.
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