After Being Approved, Medical Marijuana Industry In Montana Faces An Existential Threat

tlumacki_instofcannabis_business429Whac-a-Mole, thats what it reminded me of. Anytime you stuck your head up, it was like, Whack! Most of the industry today keeps a lower profile than it once did. Providers have reduced hundreds of patients to dozens, or even handfuls.

Millions of dollars in revenue has fallen into the thousands. The downsizing has been driven by recurring fears of federal interference into what the state is permitting for now. The 442 providers down from a 2011 high of nearly 5,000 still around are careful. They say they have to be.

Out east, Billings, the largest city in Montana, with a population of just under 110,000, is home to just one storefront. The dozens of dispensaries that once dotted the streets are all gone, run out of business by raids and regulation.

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