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Green Cross stops cannabis delivery service after 10 years

One of the 16 permitted cannabis delivery services in San Francisco has decided to close next month.

Founded by Kevin Reed, a longtime medical marijuana advocate who uses cannabis to manage chronic back pain, The Green Cross initially opened in 2004 in San Francisco as a Noe Valley store. But after being forced to close its doors amid complaints from residents, Reed turned the business into a delivery service in 2006.
In 2013, The Green Cross “finally” reopened as a storefront at 4218 Mission St. in the Excelsior District. The shop window remains open, but the delivery service stops.

Reed has informed the San Francisco Health Department that his delivery service will close on December 16.

“Due to the proliferation of unlicensed delivery services, IRS 280E regulations, and the overwhelming amount of competition in a profitable industry, we’ve decided it’s best for us to be the first delivery company to close after Prop. 64’s passing. Reed wrote in an email to the health department, which he provided to the San Francisco Examiner on Wednesday.

“It has been a pleasure to operate a delivery service in San Francisco for the past 10 years, and we are still immensely proud to be The City’s first licensed medical cannabis dispensary (license #0001).”

Reed continued, “However, we look forward to serving the residents of San Francisco for many years to come through our Outer Mission retail location.”

On Tuesday, the Board of Trustees approved recreational cannabis regulations, allowing existing licensed medical pharmacies and delivery services to start selling cannabis at retail as early as January 5 if they meet certain requirements.

Those requirements include obtaining a 120-day temporary state permit and, if they have 10 or more employees, ensuring that 30 percent of the hours worked are done by employees affected by the war on drugs, as defined in a stock program that was also approved on Tuesday. .

With the approval of Proposition 64 last year, recreational cannabis will become legal in California on January 1.

In a text message to the examiner, Reed elaborated on his reasons for closing the delivery service.

“Delivery has never been a profitable model,” he wrote. “It was really a way of survival for us after the closure of our original location and ultimately a free service that we provided after we opened the window in the Outer Mission. With all the overhead that is coming at us under these new regulations, there is absolutely no way our organization can bear these costs.”

He added, “For more perspective, delivery dropped 45 percent in sales this year!”

This story first appeared in the San Francisco Examiner.

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