Monday, November 30, 2009

Legal pot: Kind for restaurant sales or cause of chronic absenteeism?

November 30

There was an interesting article in last Monday’s Washington Post, saying that support for legalization of marijuana is growing rapidly in the United States.

It took the Great Depression to repeal the prohibition of alcohol (the 76th anniversary of that is being celebrated this coming weekend in what has become a sort of holiday in the mixology world). Will our current economic crisis lead to the legalization of another substance that is used widely by Americans to relieve stress? The tax revenues alone would be enormous.

Obviously, we at Nation’s Restaurant News like to look at this from the restaurateurs’ perspective.

And so I would like to ask you how you think legalization of marijuana would affect the restaurant world.

Please participate in the poll (you can choose multiple answers), comment below or do both.


M said...

I'm on the fence on too many answers in the polls.... Increased work injuries, munchies, etc., because some people focus better while 'high', others not; some people are accident prone or litigious, so you never know about boh injuries in that case.

However, different styles & types of cuisines, not only desserts & beverages would be AWESOME! ( I think that gave you an idea of what side I'm on)....

I say, responsibly, for medicinal purposes or not, in the presence of your own home or that form of trusted environment, or even an establishment that serves liquor, etc., runs the risk of having patrons leaving under the influence, hence the need for certification of food handlers, alcohol, and hopefully, marijuana prep.

Honestly, someone asked me yesterday if I'd bake some items for them with marijuana and I thought of the idea months ago. So, it's definitely a money maker and the demand is there too.


JB said...

In general I'm in favor of allowing people to do what they want even if that activity is dangerous.

With drugs (including alcohol) there is always a percentage of users who have problems with use. Though I don't have first-hand knowledge with marijuana it seems to be pretty safe if regulated and paired with "when/where" regulations.

The Netherlands have for a long time had it legalized and those laws would be a fine template. My politically active Canadian friends have also said that the only reason its illegal in Canada is because of drug-fearing US leaned its considerable political muscle.

As it effects the restaurant business, too soon to tell without the details, but I am amused by the round-about to discuss a political topic.

Anonymous said...

Living in Oakland where legalization is basically reality, I'd say it's hard to see any effect on sales, injuries, or job satisfaction. It's basically business as usual, with folks eating out and going about their workday BOH as usual (probably while high). However, just think about the revenue stream if restaurants/coffee shops could sell pot and pot-related foods! Remember the days of cigar bars? Baked goods, as mentioned already, is a big business for the dispensaries around here as well. They even have brands.