Cannabis dispensaries in the United States are a local government regulated physical location, typically inside a retail storefront or office building, in which a person can purchase cannabis and cannabis related items for medical or recreational use and/or consumption. There are many cannabis dispensaries spread across the United States including the state of California.
California was the first state to establish a medical marijuana program via Proposition 215in 1996 and senate Bill 420in 2003. With California being a pioneer in the regulation and decriminalization of cannabis, dispensaries began to open up in the state. One of the most notable cannabis dispensary in the state of California is the Harborside Health Center, with locations in both Oakland and San Jose, California — which is considered the “largest pot shop” in California, according to the Huffington Post.Harborside Health Center has been doggedly pursued as a criminal enterprise by the western region Department of Justice Attorney General for the Northern California Region. According to the Huffington Post, the City of Oakland tried to help the marijuana dispensary by filing a lawsuit against the Department of Justice, but the effort was thrown out by a federal magistrate.
Regardless of this little hiccup, the cannabis dispensaries in California still gain notoriety and are in fact so popular that they have been featured in reality television shows. The show WeedWars, a four-part reality show broadcast on the Discovery Channel, highlights the Harborside Health Center in Oakland California. The series focuses on the employees of the marijuana dispensary and how they run the dispensary on a day to day basis. It also chronicles the various customers to the store, as well as both large-scale growers and smaller, patient cannabis growers who are allowed to grow a limited number of plants.
Although there have been some failed proposals regarding the legality of cannabis in the state of California, the dispensaries continue to forge ahead and provide regulated cannabis for patients; for both medical and recreation use alike.