Green Aloha, one of the teams applying for a medical marijuana license on the Hawaiian island on Kauai, has struck a deal with the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 480, according to Pacific Business News.
The national UFCWU represents more than 1.3 million members, including many who belong to its Cannabis Workers Rising program. Hawaii therefore represents just the latest move by unions to make inroads with the legal marijuana industry.
Green Aloha is led by Justin Britt, who co-owns a real estate brokerage firm. Britt told Pacific Business News that if he did win a medical marijuana license in Hawaii, the two dispensaries that it would permit him to open would employ between 40 to 60 people, and that the union partnership would bring with it training and reduced healthcare costs.
Pat Loo, the local union president, said the deal had been in the works for five or six months. Other states with union involvement in the cannabis trade include California, Colorado, Minnesota, New York, New Jersey, Oregon, and likely more.
Britt also told the paper that of the four Hawaiian Islands – Oahu, Maui, The Big Island, and Kauai – that will have dispensaries, Kauai will have the smallest patient count, at about 2,000. He expects Oahu to have about 30,000 patients.
Hawaii is supposed to announce licenses on April 15.