MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Two cannabis conferences took place in South Florida Saturday.
The conferences answered questions about marijuana laws as well as growing, prescribing, and distributing medical marijuana.
“We’ve got legal experts, medical experts, dispensary operators, growers and people are here to impart their knowledge,” said Robert Platshorn.
Platshorn, who spent 30 years in jail for marijuana smuggling, is a big supporter of legalizing medical marijuana. He organized the conference at the The Club at Emerald Hills in Hollywood.
Dozens attended. Jesse Edwards of West Palm Beach came to educate herself about the industry potential in Florida. “Just to learn about the dispensaries, what’s coming as far as extracts, learning the laws, taxes just education about what’s the potential business opportunities,” she explained.
Tom Gregory is also interested in getting into the business. “We supply natural food chains products so were’e interested in converting some of that capability to these types of products,” he said, adding, “If you can grow regular tomatoes for 40 cents a pound or you can grow marijuana for $2,300 a pound you have to really think hard which one should I be in.
The future of medical marijuana in Florida still remains uncertain, though.
Governor Rick Scott has already signed a bill which will allow a low THC strain of cannabis for medical conditions.
Amendment 2 on November’s ballot would allow more widespread use of medical marijuana.
Conference organizers are counting on that amendment getting the thumbs up. If it does, though, experts warn, getting into the pot business isn’t so easy.
“There’s no such thing as a lazy hippie growing top grade medical marijuana,” said Mike Boutin, a marijuana cultivator and educator.
Platshorn added, “This is a reality check. It’s not come on in and learn to get rich because it’s not going to happen. If you’re a good businessman this is going to be a fabulous business, but it’s not a get rich quick scheme.”
After hearing the speakers, Edwards said setting up a marijuana based business will require some work. “It sounds like in South Florida it’s going to be pretty difficult, quite a challenge. You need to have a good network of people build a good support group.”
Another conference to discuss medical marijuana was held in Doral.