This year, INBA features a new category in the Directory unique to Washington State. Washington State Initiative I-502 allows recreational marijuana use for adults over the age of 21 and sale from specially licensed stores owned by private business owners regulated by the state.
The LGBT community has supported medicinal marijuana for years because in the early years it helped HIV/AIDS patients taking abundant medication, some of which needed to be taken with food. The marijuana industry provides a boost to the economy and is booming in states that have legalized recreational use for the drug and INBA is pleased to welcome two new businesses into this category, Kouchlock Productions, and Four Twenty Friendly, LLC.
Four Twenty (stylized 4:20) Friendly, LLC , a licensed retailer, has joined the ranks of Inland Northwest Business Alliance members and can be found listed under the new “marijuana” category. Carol Erhart, owner of Saving Your Sanity, a bookkeeping and accounting business, and Alissa Taylor, a veterinary technician, were looking for a business opportunity to work together when I-502 was approved. Married in 2014, the couple decided to partner on a business as well. They submitted their paperwork and were number five of the eight allotted stores approved for Spokane County. “Neither of us can smoke weed, so we felt that would be an added plus in running an I-502 business”
The business name 4:20 Friendly came from the research they were doing. Urban legend has it that 4:20 was a time and code for a group of friends who snuck out of class to go smoke. The other is that police used 4:20 as a code for a marijuana bust. Either way, the couple liked the “Friendly” aspect of the term and the name stuck.
The laws for the marijuana industry are constantly changing. Initially, the regulations for recreational use were stricter than medical use, but that has recently changed. In July, medical marijuana retailers will now need to abide by the same tax structure and product regulation governing the recreational retailers. Some of the medical businesses will have to close because of back taxes they will need to pay, but that will mean a new customer base for 4:20 Friendly. To be different, Carol and Alissa wanted to specialize in edibles, concentrates and topicals (creams) but finding great quality edibles has been tough, they currently sell more “flower” (smokables) because of better availability.
In celebration of 420 day, 4:20 friendly celebrated early with their clients by hosting a smoke in party with a band on Sunday (4/19). “It was an amazing party, everyone one was happy and friendly. No drunk people, no fights”
INBA’s other I-502 business is Kouchlock Productions, a producer of marijuana products. I-502 regulations stipulate that a retailer may not grow or produce marijuana products and vice versa. Even though businesses like Kouchlock and 4:20 Friendly are targeted towards recreational users, they help familiarize the public with the marijuana industry by creating a safer and more welcoming environment.
Visit 420 Friendly’s listing on WeedMaps.com or their store at 1515 S. Lewis Street, Spokane WA 99224. Alissa and Carol built the store on their own property, avoiding skyrocketing rent prices that force other shops raise prices.