In this new year, there’s one thing we’ve been thinking about more than almost anything else: what is on-premises consumption of cannabis going to look like in America? When will it happen, and how will marketing and branding change when it does?
In the alcohol industry, on-premises consumption builds brands while the off-trade grows volume. It brands an aura and creates opportunities to legally put your products in the hands of consumers. When cannabis companies can do the same thing, it will inevitably transform the business–and create incredible opportunities for great products and savvy marketers.
In today’s conversation, Rick and Jeff dig into the history of on-premises consumption in alcohol and tobacco (and how it relates to cannabis). They also discuss the laws and regulations that are likely to create unique issues with cannabis and the many different types of Cannabusinesses we could see opening up in the months to come.
- How DISCUS, the Distilled Spirits Council, self-polices the alcohol business.
- Why the cannabis industry is inevitably going to run up against smoke-free laws and how this conflict could possibly resolve itself.
- How marijuana tourism and social cannabis events exist legally in a small number of states.
- What operators of cannabis consumption lounges and other venues are most concerned about.
- Why Amsterdam has become less tolerant of cannabis tourism than it used to be.
- “Whenever there is a barrier that’s thrown up on how you want to do something, it sparks great creativity.” – Rick Kiley
- “The advertisements that they used to run for tobacco were just flat out misleading, lying and frankly denying the fact that this product was inherently deadly.” – Jeff Boedges
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Rick Kiley: Well, hello, everyone, and welcome back to our first 2022 episode of The Green Repeal. I’m Rick Kiley. I’m joined by Jeff Boedges. We’re a little bit late starting the New Year. Happy New Year, Jeffrey.
Jeffrey Boedges: Thank you.
Rick Kiley: I think our lateness is owed mostly to Omicron.
Jeffrey Boedges: Omicron. We both have COVID.
Rick Kiley: Not now.
Jeffrey Boedges: I say we both had COVID. Sorry. Yeah. And I was thinking that we both were like test studies for the efficacy of cannabis in the treatment of COVID.
Rick Kiley: Right? Actually, some articles came out about how cannabis might, the plant, might be able to help people not get COVID.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. I saw that as well. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Because if you know how, though, it’s hard to get COVID when you’re just laying on your couch eating Oreos.
Rick Kiley: Right. You think it’s a behavioral issue.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah, I think it is.
Rick Kiley: I read one of the interviews with one of these scientists, and it just again comes back to this plant just being a pretty amazing and unique plant. But evidently, some of the compounds in the plant bind with the proteins that the virus goes after and can sort of be preventative. It was likened to like a vitamin supplement that might enhance your immunity, like take an extra vitamin C or something like that.
Jeffrey Boedges: And that’s what all those the anti what do they call those that are in the pomegranate juice?
Rick Kiley: Antioxidants.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. Thank you. Antioxidants, that basically zap free radicals. It’s kind of the same concept.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. My problem is I really like free radicals. Is it a song?
Jeffrey Boedges: It is a really good song. It is a really good song. Yeah.
Rick Kiley: Okay. Well, we are talking today. It’s our first episode of the year. We actually do not have a guest today, and we kind of have two topics that I wanted to cover, Jeffrey. And they’ve come up a lot and I think that the one is just I wanted to talk a little bit about just the fact that we’re working in this industry that has so many just challenges in marketing and just kind of go back a little bit to how other industries and some that we’ve worked with, such as alcohol beverage have dealt with that. But I really want to turn the conversation to what I think is going to be a theme for all of 2022 for this podcast and for what we’re doing is trying to figure out what the future of on-premise looks like for the cannabis industry because of federal legalization. And then I think really marketing and branding I think we know is really going to look and feel different and much more mature when on-premise consumption is part of the natural course of events.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. I mean, the common wisdom that everybody subscribes to in the adult beverage industry is that brands are built in the on-premise. And then basically the volume is driven in the off-trade. So, on-premise just gives you a much better chance to badge your brand or to create an aura that your brand can convey. You just really can’t do that in a liquor store where you’re looking at 900,000 brands at once
Rick Kiley: And you’re also in and out like people are like hanging out in the liquor store.
Jeffrey Boedges: Well, I don’t want to talk about…
Rick Kiley: I’m not talking about the parking lot.
Jeffrey Boedges: Why are you guys hanging out in the parking lot at the Piggly Wiggly? We choose to.
Rick Kiley: The parking lot’s different inside. So, what I just think is interesting, you know, you and I, we’ve been working in alcohol beverage for a long time, and we likened the challenges that are in marketing that we face in alcohol beverage to what the cannabis companies that we’re talking to are dealing with. But I thought it might be worthwhile just chatting briefly about the sort of this idea of the necessity being the mother of invention when it comes to marketing and advertising in these heavily regulated industries. And you know, what I seem to recall in this, I started working in alcohol beverage maybe a little bit after you but I think it was 2000 when I started, and we were doing promotions, going into bars, going to liquor stores, giving away free drinks. And that was like it’s one of the only legally compliant ways to put your product in the hands of consumers or get liquid to lips in that industry is going in and doing sampling promotions at retail. Right?
Jeffrey Boedges: Right.
Rick Kiley: And there are a lot of limits to getting your product education done through other methods. And this, of course, was before the internet was a thing and mobile phones were a thing and, well, not the internet but you know what I mean. But I thought it might be interesting just to talk a little bit about, I think you know some about this, really how that industry was born because I feel like that’s what’s coming in cannabis’ way. The only sort of legal way to talk about it or put the product in people’s hands is going to be at retail in certain environments when you know when people are of a certain age. People are always saying, “I can’t advertise my prices on Instagram.” They get content taken down online all the time. But the safe space and the regulatorily safe space – is that a word, regulatorily?
Jeffrey Boedges: It is today.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. Is at retail. And so, I thought you might be in a position to talk about how did these industries arrive there.
Jeffrey Boedges: Most of those issues are very similar to wine and spirits. I mean there’s, you know, the one thing that I think right now that isn’t really out there, and we’ve talked about this a number of times for the cannabis industry is DISCUS. And DISCUS is the Distilled Spirits Council, and I’m sure that the brewing industry has its own version of it. But they self-police and they’ve come up with a number of guidelines that say where and how you can advertise or where and how you can reach customers and consumers. And I think cannabis is aware of that. I don’t know that they’re as organized yet but DISCUS does a great job of spelling out very clearly where and how to reach people. Well, they’re the ones that said essentially that we can’t have Spuds MacKenzie. He attracts underage drinkers. And I think while it wasn’t the same, but I mean, you guys remember Joe Camel when it died because, again, it attracted a very young consumer, and these things are sort of frowned upon.
Rick Kiley: Kids love camels that are cartoon people.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. Well, I mean, they did. I mean, if you walked down like high schools and look at people’s lockers, they had all kinds of Joe Camels hung up on those things. And that’s not exactly what the brands want to do. But cannabis has got to be thinking along those same lines. So, when it comes time to do out-of-home which whenever you go to a legal state, the out-of-home stuff is pretty aggressive but it’s got to be in an area that skews older. It’s got to skew legal age. And usually, the way that they figure out how much it skews is like what percentage of the population in a certain state is over the legal drinking limit and in this case, the legal consumption limit.
Rick Kiley: And those are the print advertising guidelines too so you have to have a certain readership of a certain age. And so, DISCUS what I think is interesting and maybe people don’t know this, the legal drinking age in this country is 21, but the Distilled Spirits Council’s internal regulatory definition of legal drinking age is 25. Like, they don’t even want to ere into the 21 to 24-year-old realm because it’s not safe. So, I feel like DISCUS has even put in place perhaps more strict standards internally governing itself than state laws, federal legal…
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. They have a huge buffer and they do it for good reason. And so, we talk a little bit about tobacco on the upfront here and tobacco, and this is one of those things you have to be of a certain age to actually remember. And I’m old as Methuselah but I still didn’t see some of these advertisements that used to be on television stuff. If you’ve watched Mad Men then you’ve seen them, but the advertisements that they used to run for tobacco were just flat out misleading and lying and frankly denying sort of the fact that this product was inherently deadly. And so, alcohol watched that and watched these guys and eventually, the federal government stepped in and they laid down the laws, the rules for engaging with consumers that were much more restrictive than what if they had watched themselves from the get-go than what they would have gotten. If they behaved responsibly from the get-go, it would have been much easier on them. And I think we all know that lesson from grade school, turn yourself in, you’re probably not going to get punished as bad as if you just get caught.
Rick Kiley: I keep trying to teach my kids that same lesson. It’s not easy for middle schoolers to really get that one.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. And the truth is, I remember I was like, “That’s a bunch of bullsh*t.”
Rick Kiley: Yeah. It’s just, “You’re just trying to be sneaky to catch me.” So, I’m glad we brought up tobacco because I think there are two things interesting about it, at least in regards to cannabis. The first is tobacco is really the OG of developing methods of reaching consumers that aren’t traditional advertising, and they were forced to do it.
Jeffrey Boedges: We owe our industry to the fact that they were irresponsible sh*ts when they were advertising.
Rick Kiley: Of course. Yeah. Surgeon General said their health problems, 1964, everything started changing, laws started changing, and I remember also during our early days there, you couldn’t go while you could still smoke in bars which I actually even do now in most places but I remember in New York that law went into effect in April 2003, and I remember because that was the time I was like, “Well, there’s no fun smoking anymore.” But that was during that time that lead up going into bars was the way tobacco companies connected with consumers like you couldn’t walk into a bar without someone offering you…
Jeffrey Boedges: A free pack of cigarettes.
Rick Kiley: Free pack of Camels.
Jeffrey Boedges: For your information, Marlboros and Camels.
Rick Kiley: Man, they were just beating everyone up. If you had a driver’s license and you said, “Yeah, I’m a smoker,” you just get a free pack of cigarettes right on there. And that’s how they developed a lot of their marketing and they just let their product, of course, addict you and hurt you afterwards.
Jeffrey Boedges: A quick aside. I’m old enough. I’ve smoked on an airplane and believe it or not, right out of college, I interviewed with Philip Morris in St. Louis, and I smoked in an interview.
Rick Kiley: What?
Jeffrey Boedges: I walked in, man. I was interviewing and they were like, “You want a cigarette?” I’m like, “Sure.”
Rick Kiley: Look, that may come back. Actually, I want to hear. Anybody in the cannabis industry who’s hiring people right now, if someone sparked up in an interview, how would that go? I want to know. Maybe it’s good. Maybe it’s bad. I don’t know.
Jeffrey Boedges: I think we need the cannabis H.R. episode. I think we’ll jot that down for Katie.
Rick Kiley: I want to hear that. But, yeah, I think it’s interesting. You know, we keep talking about the challenges, and I think what I find personally fun is I think whenever there is a barrier that’s thrown up on how you want to do something, it sparks great creativity. And I think you’re right, the experiential industry, the event industry, at least brands connecting with consumers, it was born because cigarette companies couldn’t communicate about their brands to consumers in any other way, at least the modern-day experience.
Jeffrey Boedges: The above-the-line stuff became greatly reduced where they could not advertise on television. And if you can imagine what the world would look like in a place where if gaming advertising were outlawed, that’s every other commercial now on sports. If Budweiser, sorry, if beer brewing brands or brewed brands weren’t allowed to advertise, I mean, that’s a humongous amount of money that all of a sudden is sitting idle, and that’s what happened with tobacco. I mean, they had more money, well, than a lot of that people put together.
Rick Kiley: I think that Warren Buffett said, “It’s a product that sold for $2 that cost $0.02 to make,” something like that.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. $2. Those were the good days. As a reformed smoker, I remember in New York paying as much as $13 a pack.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. And then the other interesting thing about tobacco, and I think as it relates to, as we switch this conversation, I think to what to the on-premise, it’s going to be really strange to see the tension that exists between smoke-free laws in the on-premise and like bars and restaurants today and smoke-free laws and how they apply to this industry. In fact, there’s an article saying that this is from – what was this? This is the Southern Illinois University Law Journal, which is basically chronicling several states where this tension exists that you have legal cannabis but you have smoke-free laws and they’re all addressing it a little bit differently in each state to see whether or not it’s going to allow cannabis consumption that’s smoking.
Jeffrey Boedges: I feel like the science behind those laws is really specious and frankly, consistently applied. They’re just not really going from state to state and applying the same type of rigor to these rules.
Rick Kiley: Well, I mean, I think there are a couple of states. Colorado, Massachusetts, and Alaska passed laws allowing onsite cannabis consumption in hospitality establishments and social consumption lounges and other venues where certain criteria are met. I’m sure certain criteria is really up to the person evaluating it. And there have been social use exemptions to many smoke-free laws to allow for consumption of marijuana: retail establishments, tourism venues, consumption clubs so private clubs, lounges, and other enterprises. And I think the general consensus of this article, which is strange, I mean, maybe it’s not strange but smoking cannabis or vaping cannabis is becoming more socially acceptable and less stigmatized than smoking cigarettes. And I think, I mean, I don’t know. I didn’t see it in the article but I think it’s perceived to not present the same public health risk.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. That’s the science part that I think is a little bit inconsistent because what they’re saying is and I’ve read a number of articles that say that smoking cannabis does not pose the significant cancer or other health risks that smoking tobacco does.
Rick Kiley: Well, I think there’s probably a lot out there and I’m going to agree with you and disagree with you and I think the idea that repetitively putting smoke in your lungs is not damaging is, I think, a fallacy. You know what? Now, I’m not going to get into cancer or whatever but like you’re breathing smoke, you’re breathing fire into your lungs and I think that that’s probably not really healthy.
Jeffrey Boedges: Probably bad. No, and we are actually on the same page. I’m saying that the science that says it isn’t, I don’t know if it’s exactly complete or accurate.
Rick Kiley: I think you put smoke in your lungs, you can get emphysema, you can get cancer and all that stuff. Now, someone who’s probably a two-pack-a-day smoker is probably putting more smoke in their lungs than somebody who’s like…
Jeffrey Boedges: Working in a coal mine.
Rick Kiley: Like in the movie, you know? But, yeah, the coal mine’s a different story. I don’t know anything about that. So, I think it’s going to be interesting. I think the question I have because this is the fun stuff to talk about because there’s no real answer. The question I have is, do we think that in the future of on-premise consumption lounges like let’s say marijuana is legal, cannabis is legal. You can go into essentially a cannabis lounge or bar. You can sit down, you can ingest cannabis any number of ways. Is smoking a joint in an on-premise, for all intents and purposes, public space. So, you don’t have to be a special member to walk in because you can carry a private membership for anything you want. But so, anybody can walk in off the street. Is smoking cannabis, lighting up a joint, is that going to be part of that?
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. I think that’s the big question. And so, I mean, there are so many ways we could take this conversation. The first is like when smoking became illegal, I always thought then and I still to a degree believe now that if an establishment chose to be a smoking establishment and just said on the outside, should you walk in? If you allow smoking and you are exposing yourself to it…
Rick Kiley: Right. That’s like the cigar lounge. Like, those exist today even though smoking is illegal, right?
Jeffrey Boedges: And I think that should be the case. You know, it becomes a little bit less clear to me when I start thinking about like anti-mask things and things like that that are going on because it seems to be in the very similar space and that you are sort of choosing to potentially expose somebody else to something hazardous if you go in and smoke, right? So, there is a sort of a self-policing piece of that that maybe is missing and I haven’t totally worked through that. But I think as far as also, the other thing that we haven’t really ever discussed and I’ve never really heard anybody discuss is technology to deal with to mitigate that risk. I mean, most of the old bars you would go to, their ventilation was either non-existent or…
Rick Kiley: It was the sawdust on the floor. That’s what’s absorbing all the smoke, guys.
Jeffrey Boedges: And the hair of the people in the account because if you’re old enough to have a drink in a bar where smoking was legal, you know they’re taking the shower. Later that night or the next morning your hair smelled awful. Right?
Rick Kiley: Even the clothes.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah, everything else is just disgusting. So, it’s all cleaned up by people being in there. But end of the day, I think that there is better ventilation technology out there everything from just having air that flows in and out more readily to having air purifiers in the account that can take that smoke out of the air and possibly even things like ionization and that would bind with the smoke and drop it. So, all of that stuff, it never really was a thing because there was never a chance. It was legal one day and it was illegal the next. So, there was never a period of saying, “How do we mitigate this risk?” And I think all of those things, if cannabis becomes something that people want to have as a smoking cannabis, as a social experiment or a social experience, I think all of those things could be brought to bear.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. I mean, I think about this question a number of ways, and the first is more than half of the people consuming cannabis are still smoking it. So, the answer is obviously yes. There has to be some sort of on-premise. If on-premise happens, smoking needs to be part of it. And I think the question is, how does that happen? And I think one of the things I was thinking about is do you take this, like as you said, do you take the cigar bar approach where everyone coming in is accepting whatever the risk is and that that makes it okay? And I wonder, would on-premise locations like might there be different types of licenses for on-premise locations or specialties? Like, this is an on-premise location where you can have beverages and edibles but no smoking or vaping. Would that exist? Like, that would be kind of weird.
Jeffrey Boedges: What would be funnier is if it’s just smoking, vaping. No edibles. Good luck policing that one. What’s in your mind?
Rick Kiley: But like smoking, vaping is the only thing you’re going to be able to see. Yeah. What I also don’t know is how do you make sure like when you go to a bar and you’re not supposed to bring your own booze with you.
Jeffrey Boedges: Right.
Rick Kiley: Like, how do you stop that?
Jeffrey Boedges: And how are you going to stop the contact? I say you go in and you’re like, “You know what? I’m just coming in for a mellow bust after work to something to cool me down before I go home.” But then the guy next to you is like smoking like…
Rick Kiley: He’s hotboxing you.
Jeffrey Boedges: He’s hotboxing you with some serious chronic. Next thing you know, you’re like…
Rick Kiley: No. It’s really interesting to me to wonder how that’s going to work. And I think there are some questions that I don’t know if there are studies out there about this but for tobacco, secondhand smoke that’s the public health risk. That’s why it was eliminated from bars. I mean, I think it also helped people quit smoking, which I know that it did, but I don’t know. Is second-hand cannabis smoke as much of a risk as second-hand cigarette smoke? Like, I don’t know.
Jeffrey Boedges: I remember being at an Allman Brothers concert that was right next to, what’s the Disney one with the genie?
Rick Kiley: Aladdin?
Jeffrey Boedges: Aladdin. So, it was in the theater next door to Aladdin. And I remember that somebody came on and said that the people from Aladdin were complaining about the amount of bleed-through from the Allman Brothers show. I’m like, “Wow. That’s a lot of people really enjoying Aladdin a new way for the first time.”
Rick Kiley: I mean, then you’re going to be talking about districts. That would be kind of crazy too.
Jeffrey Boedges: That’s another idea. But I think, what about hookah bars? I mean, hookah bars were a thing very briefly but where you would go in…
Rick Kiley: They’re still around.
Jeffrey Boedges: Are they?
Rick Kiley: Yeah, I think so.
Jeffrey Boedges: Okay. Because like, what do they put in the hookah? I mean, was it tobacco?
Rick Kiley: Yeah. It’s tobacco but it smells of fruit, so it’s like a strawberry or you can get different flavors I think.
Jeffrey Boedges: So, it’s more like vaping.
Rick Kiley: Yes. I mean, it’s still smoke but it doesn’t smell quite as bad. Let’s just say that. It smells a little bit better. That’s my experience. I don’t have a lot of experience with it.
Jeffrey Boedges: But again, I’m just assuming that they had worked out some of these issues like how do you prevent bleed? Because if you’re in and you’re like, “I want the strawberry,” and then the person next to you is smoking something that’s not strawberry. How do you create an experience that is unique that’s got some fidelity?
Rick Kiley: Many shots of vodka but people stopped caring. I’m not sure people care. So, that’s the interesting thing. So, I think when you go to a place where you’re going to smoke a hookah, you know what that environment is and you’re just saying, “This is the ride I’m going on.” And that also begs the question, perhaps, when people go to bars or at least when people went to bars in the 90s in Philly where I was and smoking was allowed, not everyone smoked. That wasn’t the prime reason of being there. So, a small percentage of people smoked depending on where you were and so there is definitely a distinct number of humans who would have liked it to go away. I wonder about the percentage of people who are going to go to the future cannabis lounge and not partake. You know, like, I think everyone who’s going to go to that hookah bar that you described or anyone going to a cigar lounge, they’re 100% going to be participating or 95. Like, it’s a high percentage. Whereas if you were at a bar in the 90s, maybe it’s 60% aren’t smoking, right? So, I wonder about the future like how enjoyable is the on-premise consumption, on-premise cannabis lounge experience going to be for someone who’s just hanging out with somebody? And will that happen?
Jeffrey Boedges: Well, it’s possible but they’re going to have to wear a frickin gas mask in there because otherwise, you’re getting a contact high anyway. But I think a bigger question for me when I start to think about the future and what these things look like because really right now we’re not talking about like the cannabis beers or cannabis-infused cocktails. We’re really talking about smoking inside of a lounge. So, to be honest with you, it takes about all of that. I mean, if you’re slow, maybe about 30 seconds to get really stoned.
Rick Kiley: It depends on what you’re doing. It depends on what you’re ingesting and all that thing.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. But I’m just thinking that smoking, for the most part, that’s about as direct intake as you can get. And I think that’s why it’s still so popular. It’s just that I don’t have to guess on how high I’m getting. I’m doing it and it’s like I take a puff, I get a little high. I take another puff, I get a little higher. You have that sort of instant feedback loop that’s very different than drinking. How many times have we all been out there and been like, “I’m going to go ahead and have another drink,” even though that’s probably a bad idea but you didn’t know until it was a little too late. And I think that’s going to be, for me, what happens in an on-premise experience when you do smoke and say, “I’ve done them. I’m plenty high and I’ve got an hour to kill before I want to have another hit or another puff.” So, you’re going to have to have Oreos and milk, I guess, but some kind of nosh that’s going to keep people sort of engaged. I feel like in a social engagement when the behavior that’s ingrained in many people in the United States and probably globally is this sort of there’s something to do with your hands and mouth the entire time that you’re in there.
Rick Kiley: Right. Well, look, I’m glad you brought that up and I’m going to pivot slightly here but Katie, who works with us, did some research and I want to make sure we got it in there. So, there are some states that are allowing cannabis and vape consumption, smoking and vaping, on the premises of recreational retailers right now, which are dispensaries. So, Alaska and California and Colorado, you can smoke on-site and there is what’s being called marijuana tourism, where there are special venues where you can do that, be it beyond dispensary tasting rooms and grow rooms. Evidently, in some places, you can sample marijuana on a bus or another vehicle. In California, Colorado, and Washington state, there are weed and wine events and cannabis cooking and painting classes and private cannabis party limos, which that’s a business opportunity right there.
Jeffrey Boedges: I got to tell you, private cannabis party limos have been a thing in New York, New Jersey for like the last 35 years.
Rick Kiley: Well, speaking of New York, evidently, one of the things happening is there are some private clubs that are popping up called smoke-easies, like the speakeasies of the day where you can be a member and go in and smoke on site. And evidently, there are some states, California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Nevada, Washington that are starting to set the stage for Amsterdam-style social consumption lounges. But I’m saying all this because I want to get to the point you brought up. One of the things that is happening at most of these places is they are typically prohibited from selling food or alcohol right now. And I know because it comes up all the time when we’ve heard from folks who are trying, who put the cannabis consumption lounges at sponsorships at music festivals and whatnot, there is a great amount of concern, especially between the crossover of cannabis and alcohol. So, I cannot imagine at any point in the near future that there is going to be an on-premise location where you can go and order some weed and also some whiskey from the same spot. Like, I don’t think those two are going to crossover for quite some time.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. I don’t know, though, man, because like I could definitely see going in and having a little weed and then some wine, for sure. But I mean, again, it’s not for everyone.
Rick Kiley: I’m not saying what you or I would like to do. I’m just saying what the tolerance for the governing body.
Jeffrey Boedges: And we’re not talking about how you spend your Fridays. We’re talking about what’s responsible.
Rick Kiley: No. Look, you know how I enjoy my whiskey and I totally get it. I’m just getting the sense that this idea of you need something else to do with your hands.
Jeffrey Boedges: It may be tea and coffee. And really sort of it might be a new boom or a new day for tea and coffee. Not that they need one, but you know. Go and have some.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. I think food, though, that has to be like, I mean, you can just see. Can you imagine not being able to get nachos? Like, that just seems wrong.
Jeffrey Boedges: Man, some truffle fries really would hit the spot, but yeah, I get you.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. But I just thought that that’s interesting like that’s where we stand right now. And funny aside, you’ve been to Amsterdam at some point in your life, is that correct?
Jeffrey Boedges: That is correct.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. Evidently, today in Amsterdam, the sale of marijuana products is less tolerated than it was like two or three decades ago.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. That’s when I was there.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. So, evidently, just as an aside, it’s a little bit tolerated. Right now, I think the governing bodies of Amsterdam think that the demand is too high.
Jeffrey Boedges: Well, it was a huge, huge cannatourism for them like cannatourism for them was humongous. I mean, I would say that a full probably 50%. Now, mind you, the Van Gogh Museum is there. The Rijksmuseum is there. I mean, there are some outstanding cultural things. I wouldn’t even scrape the surface with what I just said but still, 50% of people coming there, legal weed.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. And so, they don’t want that as much but everybody should be going to California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Nevada, and Washington instead.
Jeffrey Boedges: I’m sure. Well, and I do say, I mean, I remember like walking around Amsterdam, there were some definite what I would call sort of weed bums. I mean, they’d like ski bums. They were just there for the weed and they didn’t really have a lot of money or any way to get any money. They were kind of like living on the fringe just enough to smoke doobies every day. And maybe that got to the point where it became anti-productive for the tourism industry. I mean, no one wants to walk around if there’s a bunch of panhandlers coming up to hit for dough all the time.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. So, I’m just going to bring it back to this smoking thing and I just wonder, do you think vaping is considered the same as smoking?
Jeffrey Boedges: Well, certainly from a tobacco standpoint, yeah. I mean, that’s kind of what I was even sort of to touch on earlier is like all of these anti-smoking laws that are substantially put in place because smoking is bad for you. Also, for the most part, they throw out vaping with the bathwater, and vaping is from what I’ve read is not nearly as bad as smoke. Nicotine is nicotine, and nicotine is still addictive, and nicotine does cause high blood pressure. And it probably also does cause arteriosclerosis and other things. And maybe that’s why they’ve outlawed vaping of a product that delivers that particular drug, right? But maybe cannabis isn’t quite as bad.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. I just wonder as we move forward like if smoking and smoke-free laws came at odds, I wonder how cannabis vaping would fit in there with it.
Jeffrey Boedges: That’s why I keep saying I think there’s going to have to be some science behind the rule. Otherwise, it’s going to seem arbitrary and people are going to get pissed off that they can’t smoke cigarettes or can’t vape tobacco products, right?
Rick Kiley: Yeah. All right. Interesting. Well, we’re obviously not going to solve this today.
Jeffrey Boedges: No.
Rick Kiley: I’m not sure if there’s anything really to solve, I’m just really curious as to like…
Jeffrey Boedges: I think – go ahead, Rick.
Rick Kiley: Just the variations of what on-premise consumption might look like. Like, I could totally see this like wonderful high-end restaurant sort of like food pairing situation that doesn’t have smoking anywhere, right? And it’s about ingestible and really getting that way. I could see like they really like just gritty like share a joint kind of place. You could see…
Jeffrey Boedges: Gastrocannabis is a thing, definitely. I think you’re going to see like music places and things like that.
Rick Kiley: Oh my god, the music venues. I mean, don’t they already exist? They’re just going to swap out Miller Lite for weed brands.
Jeffrey Boedges: So, yeah. No, I do think you’re right from what you said earlier, which is we’re going to end up with sort of different classification systems and people are going to be able to choose where they want to go based on the experience they want to have. And there will be some places maybe even that have multiple licenses and do different nights. You know, Monday night is smoke-free night or cannabis-free night or whatever the case. Right?
Rick Kiley: Yeah. I mean and then, of course, we have different types of bars and restaurants in the world like you’re not going to go to an Irish pub for the nice high-end wine experience that you want. And so, I think that’s probably okay in a natural level.
Jeffrey Boedges: Shepherd’s pie tastes good when you’re high, though. I mean, that just writes itself.
Rick Kiley: Talk about serving shepherd’s pie. If you want the first Guinness-free weed Irish pub, I’m in.
Jeffrey Boedges: Oh man, look, like a Guinness that doesn’t get you drunk but gets you high, that sounds pretty cool.
Rick Kiley: I mean, I think it’s already in the works. I would think Guinness already has that formulated. I mean, if they don’t, they should. Guinness, there’s 5% to us for that idea.
Jeffrey Boedges: Thanks.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. Instead of nitrogenated, it’s weededated. I don’t know.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. Cannabinated.
Rick Kiley: Cannabinated. Trademark Green Repeal 2022. Cool. All right. Well, so to business, we are going to return, I think, pretty soon in a week or two with some regularly scheduled programming. We have some interviews.
Jeffrey Boedges: Let’s get some people who are authorities.
Rick Kiley: Yeah. I’d like to say you’re an authority now, Jeffrey. I’m just letting you know.
Jeffrey Boedges: I appreciate that. Thanks, man.
Rick Kiley: But with some other perspectives also, we’re trying to get some folks. We’re going to be talking to some folks who are in the on-premise world a little bit. So, that’s going to be fun. And we’re going to be heading towards I think, Jeff, our 50th episode is going to be released on 420.
Jeffrey Boedges: It’s going to be a big one. Do we know who our guest is for that yet?
Rick Kiley: No. Maybe we have multiple guests. We should figure that out. If you want to be on…
Jeffrey Boedges: Snoop, if you’re out there listening, you’d be a great guest of honor.
Rick Kiley: We might do something a little different. Maybe we’ll record on location somewhere, something like that.
Jeffrey Boedges: Yeah. Sounds good. That’s a good idea. Yeah. We got to get behind that one.
Rick Kiley: All right. Good stuff. Anyway, thanks for listening. Thank you, Jeffrey. We will catch you guys next time. Cheers.
Jeffrey Boedges: All right, peace.