The Business of Cannabis

John Pellitteri, Partner and Cannabis Practice Leader of Grassi & Co., was a panelist at this morning’s, “The Business of Cannabis”, hosted by NJBiz.

The “marijuana business” once meant the illegal cultivation and distribution of a strictly black market drug. Today, such activities remain illegal in many places. While New Jersey allows for the medical use of marijuana, recreational cannabis is a $6 billion-plus industry with lucrative opportunities currently unavailable to New Jersey entrepreneurs. But now Gov. Phil Murphy wants to legalize recreational use of cannabis in the Garden State.

Other panelists included:

  • Daniel T. McKillop, Esq. Chair, at Cannabis Law Group at Scarinci Hollenbeck, Attorneys at Law
  • Scott Rudder, President, Board of Directors, at New Jersey Cannabusiness Associationw Group at Scarinci Hollenbeck, Attorneys at Law

It was moderated by: 

  • Jim Minninger, MS/AJS, Corporate Security Specialist, at Viridis Security Group

Some of the main pionts John made during the panel discussion: “Get in touch with your congress person! That’s how change happens. A lot of trends in healthcare start out west;” John Pellitteri saw parallels in cannabis. “There’s a good clinical reason for this… I’m not sure the train is going to stop.”  The Federal Schedule I status of cannabis made it hard. “Understand your risk- but with risk comes reward.” The IRS only lets you deduct what it takes to make the product, which brings the tax bracket up. Getting a a cannabis endeavor off the ground is not a cheap process. You’re going to need to have the capital available.”