Los Angeles hosts its first marijuana 'farmer's market'- organic, of course

Organic marijuana - for medicinal purposes, of course - at bargain prices

PUBLISHED : Monday, 07 July, 2014, 4:31am
UPDATED : Monday, 07 July, 2014, 4:31am


It looks like any other US farmer's market. Buyers sniff the wares, test weights and compare, while vendors tout their product. But the only produce on offer is cannabis - organic, of course.

"We have lollipops for $7, chocolate bars to help you relax for $13, and 'cosmic dust,'" said Bill Harrison, who also stocks plain old smokable marijuana.

The Heritage Farmer's Market - held over the July 4 long weekend - was the first of its kind in Los Angeles. Despite the scorching sun, the queue to get in stretched hundreds of metres.

The crowd was diverse and multigenerational, interspersed with hippies, rockers, hipsters and some nondescript suburban types. But had one thing in common - they all have, as required for entry, a doctor's prescription.

In California, marijuana is only legal for medicinal purposes. For recreational use, possession of less than an ounce (28 grams) could result in a fine. Larger amounts can trigger criminal charges.

Edwynn Delgado, 20, knows the laws by heart: "For medical use, you are allowed up to four ounces at home, but I'd like to bring back home more today," he joked.

He has smoked pot since he was 11.

"In my neighbourhood, there was a always a lot of weed around," he smiled.

He became a "legal" user at age 18, when he got a prescription to ease muscle aches.

Delgado waited for more than an hour at the stand that offers the best prices, at US$180 per ounce, instead of US$300 as charged in a regular dispensary.

Besides getting a good deal, Delgado prefers coming where he can count on quality product.

"Street dealers are dangerous because they put other stuff on it," he said.

Adam Agathakis, one of the organisers of the weekend fair set to end yesterday, said: "It's like in a regular farmer's market.

"People come here to talk to growers, to check that it's grown without pesticides and that it doesn't have mould."

Agathakis, 35, has campaigned to "de-demonise" cannabis since his father died of cancer a decade ago.

"When he was dying, marijuana was the only thing alleviating the pain," he said.