The D.C. cannabis business association is moving full steam ahead


Welcome to The Outlaw Report’s new Q&A series, focused on the cannabis landscape of the Mid-Atlantic. Our series aims to shine a spotlight on the trailblazers and experts who are shaping the local cannabis industry. Through their first-hand experience and insights, we explore the successes, challenges, and stories of businesses and individuals at the forefront of cannabis policy, business and innovation in the region.

Our third interview features D.C. Cannabis Business Association, a mix of passionate residents, experienced entrepreneurs and dedicated activists building a D.C. cannabis market that prioritizes local businesses, sustainability and fairness.

Lisa Scott, D.C. CBA’s president, says she organized the first D.C. cannabis pop-up event in 2017. This event, along with subsequent pop-ups, helped pave the way for the gifting cannabis scene in the city. Scott was one of the first to recognize the gifting loop-hole of I-71. She also founded Bud Appetit Edibles, her own line of edibles.  Read the full interview below!

Welcome and thank you for joining us! To start off, could you tell us a bit about D.C. CBA and the mission?

We started several years ago in anticipation of the Rider being lifted getting local wannabe ganjapreneurs ready for legal business. But the Rider wasn’t lifted and all we could do was advocate for change, like testifying to the D.C. Council on finding an easy and affordable pathway into the industry. And the council eventually decided to pass the current expansion. So now that so many people have applied for licenses, we’re doing our best to ease and inform and educate people on the difficult process of transitioning from illegal to legal and just opening up a business in general.

What is your favorite part of D.C. cannabis market?

We are excited about the current transition from the gray market to the legal market as something that will benefit the local community: lifting us all up.

When it comes to connecting members, what are you most excited to help them with?

We are looking forward to building an industry community. We’ve had several TOWN HALLS where we brought in government officials to help
inform and educate and answer specific questions from the community on all aspects of getting into the cannabis industry. The next event starts May 31, 2024.

What makes D.C. CBA unique? 

We are a non-profit that has been advocating for the local cannabis community from day one and the only organization that has put for solutions and still working hard to make this new industry work and benefit us all. Our board members have been working tirelessly, volunteering our
own time and paying for everything out of pocket. We do this because we truly believe that we can create a great association with the cannabis industry.

What are some of the unique benefits for cannabis businesses that work with you?

We’re creating a lot of benefits for our members and creating a directory of service providers that will help reduce some of the costs of running a business.

Can you share an example of when your services helped a client?

We’ve helped two of the first I -71 stores transition to get licensed and opened (Green Theory in Palisades and Wash Hydro in Adams Morgan). Also, after several months of working with the Department of Buildings and ABCA on zoning issues we’ve finally got them to open the door to 33 more zones where cannabis businesses can set up shop.

Thank you for joining us, Lisa!

To learn more about DC CBA, visit their website. Register for the upcoming workshop on Facebook.


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