Marijuana Growers Gather In Portland, Talk Shop, Plan For The Future

OREGON:  A year ago, maybe even six months ago, Chris Olson wouldn’t have talked openly about his commercial marijuana grow in Portland.

But on Thursday, surrounded by hundreds of Oregon medical marijuana growers, he spoke about his work, his plans for a medical marijuana dispensary in Portland and his willingness, even eagerness, to have a state inspector snoop around his grow site.

Emboldened by the state’s newly regulated medical marijuana retail industry and the prospect of legal recreational cannabis, Oregon’s pot producers are emerging from the shadows.

Growers have formed a political action committee to push for state regulation and legal protection in the 2015 legislative session. They’ve hired cannabis-savvy lawyers. And on Friday they staged the largest get-together of pot growers the state’s seen.