Marijuana Stinks. Here’s What Cities, Businesses And Neighbors Can Do About It.

By Brooke Staggs
The Orange County Register

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Cities CAN mandate odor-control systems for home growers, or as a condition for approval of marijuana-related business permits.

The Orange County Register

Even the most ardent marijuana lovers can’t deny it: The plant, at least to some noses, stinks.

Marijuana odors have triggered lawsuits against cannabis companies. They’ve led residents to try to block commercial operations from coming to California and the other eight states where recreational cannabis is legal and, increasingly, big business.

Odor even has sparked some neighborhood friction, too, as marijuana smoke drifts from one apartment or yard to the next.

There are products on the market that claim to test for smells, block all odors from wafting out of indoor operations, and even help control the stench of outdoor marijuana farms.

Long before legalization, the cannabis industry grew accustomed to working underground — making growers and processors and distributors pretty good at hiding the smells associated with their businesses.

While that might ease the possibility of odor-related friction, it doesn’t foster industry-wide communication about new ideas for tackling the issue, even as new anti-odor technologies are coming to market.

Only now — with odor control an area that’s both problematic and ripe for technical solutions — are marijuana entrepreneurs starting to share ideas about their industry’s stink factor.

“That’s probably the biggest hurdle now, for everybody involved, is knowing what’s available as best practices, and what’s feasible,” said Dana Pack with Fogco, an Arizona-based company that makes systems to neutralize unwanted smells.

Cities can mandate odor-control systems for home growers, or as a condition for approval of marijuana-related business permits.

But some in the industry note that odor requirements aren’t yet universal, and that odor control is yet another element of the marijuana business in which regulators aren’t keeping pace with the spread of legalization.

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