A proposed ordinance would prohibit CBD shops in Chicago from advertising themselves as “dispensaries,” in an attempt to distinguish them from state-licensed recreational cannabis shops.
Licensed marijuana companies see the proposal as a way to keep unregulated competitors from confusing customers. Members of the hemp CBD industry see the move as another example of big cannabis trying to harass them to protect their restricted market.
The measure by Ald. Brian Hopkins, 2nd, would also ban CBD shops from advertising with the image of a cannabis leaf or bud — as licensed dispensaries are forbidden to do — or a green cross.
“Some of these unregulated retailers are trying to masquerade as legitimate dispensaries,” Hopkins said. “It’s false and deceptive marketing, and it needs to stop.”
Charles Wu, owner of hemp CBD grower and retailer prescribd in Bridgeview, said he doesn’t generally use the word “dispensary,” but at least one product he sells from an outside supplier uses a leaf logo.
Though the Chicago ordinance would not affect his business directly, Wu feels it’s a sign of how the CBD industry as a whole is treated.
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“We feel it’s harassment,” he said of the