La. CBD vendors struggle to stay in business – WAFB

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La. CBD vendors struggle to stay in business – WAFB

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - As the manager for “Your CBD Store” off Coursey Boulevard in Baton Rouge, Alicia Julien said it’s been nearly impossible to

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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) – As the manager for “Your CBD Store” off Coursey Boulevard in Baton Rouge, Alicia Julien said it’s been nearly impossible to meet the demand of her customers without the products to sell.

“We are way behind the curve, in my opinion at least,” she said. “We have a lot of customers walk out if they’re looking for a particular item and we can’t carry it or we don’t have it, so it definitely hurts the pockets.”

House Speaker Clay Schexnayder’s hemp bill that was passed and signed into law back in June gave CBD vendors the ability to sell more products, including the raw flower form of hemp, as long as it was approved by the ATC and regulated by the Department of Health.

“The rules are already there basically,” said Schexnayder. “They fit within the perimeters of what we passed before.”

To find answers as to why LDH has taken so long to coordinate with the small businesses that have been waiting for the green light, the House Health and Welfare Committee asked the department to testify on Friday, Oct. 8. After several questions, LDH ultimately admitted it simply dropped the ball.

“We had about a two-month lag,” said Steve Russo with the LDH Executive Council. “It would be easy for us as a team to say it was COVID related or storm related, I’m not gonna tell you that. I’m going to tell you we had a two-month lag that we need to get better at.”

Alicia added if nothing is done soon, it won’t be long before businesses here fail or pack up shop and take their business out of state.

“Yes, I know some people who left and just, they still live here but they opened businesses in other places because it’s not as strict as Louisiana and they make more money,” explained Julien.

LDH gave its word to the committee it will try to have its fiscal economic impact statements in the hands of the Legislative Fiscal Office by October 10 so it can begin to properly coordinate with businesses as to what they allowed to sell in their stores.

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