Marijuana on a daily basis, just like coffee or cupcakes, now it’s possible in Colorado. The state is making the most of the state’s recent legalization of cannabis by introducing the world’s first marijuana vending machines.
The controversial ZaZZZ vending machine, manufactured and designed by American Green, made its debut in Colorado over the weekend, and it’s expected later to sell dispensing snacks such as pot brownies in addition to marijuana in its original form.
Stephen Shearin, CEO of the machine’s parent company, Tranzbyte, told the website specialized in marijuana news, that the device was “an automated, age-verifying, climate-controlled marijuana dispensing machine.”
He added: “I envisioned something like this 20 years ago but didn’t think I’d live to see the end of prohibition against a plant of such great promise.”
Unfortunately, for all the enthusiasts over there, at the moment the machine is intended for use by medical marijuana patients, of which there are 2.5 million in the US, and is supposed to check customer’s ages by using biometrics.
Shearin says that the machine is “great for shy folks” as all a user must do is “Swipe ID and get verified. Select products and pay. Retrieve products and depart using appropriate bagging solution.”
At this time, the machine does not check for medical marijuana licenses, but Shearin said the company is “prepared to integrate” such features in the future, adding that since “people will be authorized in medical facilities before entry … internal checks will only bolster security and accounting for state and dispensary alike.”
Also, it won’t be located on street corners, as it will be placed in licensed stores providing a service similar to automated grocery checkouts. It will be first used at the Herbal Elements dispensary in Eagle Veil, where owner Greg Honan thinks it will make the business even more efficient
“We’re looking forward to using the ZAZZZ machine to easily track all this inventory … we’re gonna eliminate the middle man,” he said to local news outlet KDVR. “It’ll go straight from the budtender right into our machine. There’s no room for theft by patients, employees … there’s no way to lose track of the inventory.”
Once it gets rolling, the ZaZZZ will meet some competition, as such companies like Endexx and Medbox are also looking forward to atomized distribution of marijuana, althogh both have stayed behind the counter at distributors thus far.
The CEO of California-based Medbox, Bruce Bedrick, predicted the emergence of such machnes a year ago, saying “Some people want to see this free-flowing marijuana. They want to go from federal and state ban to marijuana for everybody. We don’t believe that can happen. In order to gain respect and trust, it’s better to go through gradual, medical adoption.”
Colorado Amendment 64, which allows for the commercial sales of marijuana to adults over 21, went into effect on Jan. 1. While Colorado and Washington are the only two states that allow for sale of pot for both medical and recreational use, 14 other states have decriminalized marijuana, meaning there is no criminal record for first-time possession, says Mashable.