John Lord was born in New Zealand but his life trek took him to Colorado to become boss king of the legal marijuana industry in the state. New Zealand is now discussing the possibility of legalizing marijuana and John Lord would be excited to bring his craft back to his birthplace.
Rapper Snoop Dogg joined John Lord’s business as a promoter and has a line of weed named after him. Snoop Dogg is pictured with Lord and Lord’s partner, Ling Monk.
The expat Kiwi who heads Colorado’s biggest weed seller promises thousands of jobs for New Zealand if the drug is legalised here. John Lord spoke with Florence Kerr as part of Stuff’s ‘What if it was legal?’ series.
He’s done it in Colorado, so would John Lord peddle legal pot back home in New Zealand?
Lord, the New Zealand farmer turned Colorado’s biggest weed dealer, believes legalisation is the way forward for his former country. “New Zealand’s population is currently 4.5 million. So if the legal cannabis industry were to generate a similar number of jobs relative to the overall population, you’d be looking at somewhere around 15,000 jobs created directly by cannabis businesses,” he said.
“However, if you were to include all the jobs created by ancillary businesses serving the industry, including those in software, security, packaging, technology, real estate, construction, compliance, etc, that number would increase significantly.” Lord, who is chief executive of LivWell Enlightened Health, said New Zealand lawmakers needed to reconsider their stance.
“Based on what we’ve seen here in Colorado, I would imagine legalisation would have the same positive economic impacts in New Zealand that it has had here. “That includes the creation of thousands of good-paying jobs, a boon to commercial real estate, increased funds for tax coffers that can be used to fund any number of worthy initiatives, fewer tax dollars being spent to arrest and house people in jail for cannabis-related offences, decreasing the burden on police officers who can direct their attention to more pressing public safety concerns, new economic activity that will support countless ancillary businesses serving the industry and perhaps even some increased tourism.” In 2009, the first year after recreational cannabis was approved, total sales in Colorado amounted to $699.2 million. The second year, sales were $996.2m.
By 2016, the figure reached $1.3 billion. Recreational marijuana accounted for two-thirds of that, medicinal marijuana for a third.
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