Some locations call them, “budtenders.” Others refer to them as “patient liaisons” or “compassion care technicians” or “dispensary agents.” Although there is no single formal title or degree, these individuals are responsible for working behind the counters of California’s marijuana dispensaries.
Our L.A. marijuana dispensary attorneys are often asked about the required training for those in these roles. Although there is no legal requirement or state-approved course that budtenders have to pass, it can be a smart move for a business to seek advanced education for their dispensary workers. A new study published in the journal Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research revealed 55 percent of dispensary staff (medical and non-medical) had some type of formal training for their position. Twenty percent had some form of medical or scientific training. Meanwhile, approximately 94 percent reported they provide specific cannabis advice to patients. Many of these patients are seeking advice on specific strains that can help them with a variety of ailments, form post-traumatic stress disorder to chronic pain to seizures. It helps if the staff knows what they are selling, not just from a customer service standpoint but potentially from a liability standpoint.
California was the first state to allow medicinal marijuana and recently joined a growing number of states that now allow recreational marijuana (though detailed regulations are still being ironed out). On Jan. 1st, 2018, a bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown will go into effect that has a number of requirements that could make training even more valuable. Among those requirements include tracing requirements, record-keeping, streamlined systems for transportation, quality assurance testing standards and robust labeling/ packaging/ product handling and security. Continue reading