Grow, Gift, Repair

Nice primer on what to expect when stores do open

There are not only limits on who can buy, but also on how much you can buy.

Retail shops cannot sell more than one ounce of marijuana flower or five grams of concentrate to a person in a single purchase. One ounce is also the maximum amount of flower individuals are legally allowed to have on them in public, though you can possess up to 10 ounces at home. The five-gram limit on sales also stands for edibles and other cannabis-infused products (eight grams of concentrate is the rough equivalent of one ounce of flower).

There are also dosage limitations on the sales of edibles. A single serving cannot have more than 5 milligrams of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the primary psychoactive in marijuana that gets you high. Packages of edibles can have up to 20 individual servings or a total of 100 milligrams of THC. Shaleen Title, a CCC commissioner, notes that beginners should begin with a single 5 milligram serving, since it can take up to two hours to feel the effects.

“It’s better to start low and avoid potentially unpleasant side effects until you are more familiar with how edibles make you feel,” said Title, who notes that there’s a difference between serving size and potency.

“While you’re reading labels, also pay attention to potency, which is reported as part of the cannabinoid profile that is tested by a lab before the product is sold,” she said. “For example, if you’re buying cannabis, you can compare the percentage of potency for THC across different strains.”

Customers buy products at the Harvest Medical Marijuana Dispensary in San Francisco. —Haven Daley / AP
Jim Borghesani, the former spokesman for the 2016 legalization campaign and a cannabis industry consultant, notes that the benefits of a legitimate market include both much higher safety standards and increased choice in what consumers can buy.

“There’ll be a much higher variety of products than what you’d find on the streets,” he said.