Marijuana legalization is now in full force. However, one of the recurring struggles for medical and recreational dispensaries is their reliance on cash transactions. This dependency is a result of the federal government’s stance on the sale and use of marijuana.

 

Dispensaries: more money, more problems

Basically, even though Colorado and 24 other states have determined to support marijuana legalization, “Big Brother” still considers it a Schedule 1 substance at the federal level, which means the manufacturing, distribution, possession and dispensing of marijuana is illegal. As a result, banks aren’t willing to assume risk for transactions that are illegal at the federal level.

But, being cash reliant poses a problem for both the dispensaries and the consumers. Fore example, in 2015, in Colorado, marijuana sales were close to $1 billion in what were largely cash transactions (no big deal.) This means that dispensary owners must invest in bank-grade safes and lock down their shops with intense security systems like it’s Alcatraz.

On the consumer side, many people in 2016, don’t always have cash on their person, so going to the dispensary also necessitates a trip to the ATM. If you’re going to buy an eighth of weed, having $40 in your pocket is not a big deal, but if you want to buy an ounce, then using a non-cash method would be awesome.

Linx to the rescue

So this is where the Australian-based company Linx comes in and saves the 420 day! Basically here’s how it goes. If there is a Linx kiosk at a dispensary (which there are quite few), a customer can load their Linx card using cash, credit or debit. Then the Linx kiosk dispenses the activated Linx card with your money on it. You can then use the Linx card at approved dispensaries to purchase your cannabis products. The whole process is safe and compliant for the consumer.

For the dispensaries, the Linx guys will collect the cash from the machines with secure armored cars. Linx can also help dispensaries with the accuracy of dispensary tax reporting right out of the system.

Progress in the cannabis industry

This is a big deal for the Cannabis Industry. Remaining cash dependent is unsafe, sketchy and detracts from the legitimacy and sophistication of the business. The widespread use of Linx, will help to standardize and make more transparent all dispensary transactions. It will also help to minimize the risks associated with handling bundles of cash, which is not only risky, but it feels very Mafioso.

Bottom line, Linx is a very welcome and innovative solution to a big issue that has plighted the legal Cannabis Industry at large. Better yet, as soon as there is a Linx kiosk at all Denver dispensaries consumers will be psyched to use their Linx cards. Not only it is it easier than going to three 7-Elevens to find a functioning ATM, but it is essentially a designated adult weed allowance. The future has arrived!

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