Burning issues at the ABA’s Antitrust Spring Meeting
This year’s ABA’s Antitrust Spring Meeting featured a panel on the antitrust issues faced by the marijuana industry (see here).
This is no joke; it seems that following its legalization by 23 States marijuana is the fastest growing industry in the U.S., currently worth $4 billion-per-year but this budding economy is expected to grow tenfold in the near future.
As in any rapidly growing semi-regulated industry, marijuana is poised to be an interesting green field for the application of competition law. Some report instances of boycotts, price fixing, false advertising, output limitation, distributor concentration and state-mandated vertical monopolies. Some of you may actually remember how alcohol provided many of the most interesting cases in EU Law (see here)
Since many of these issues remain in a doobious, funny smelling nebulous state, even expectations were high.
And mysteriously enough, although we are told that this was attended by the entire army of MLex journalists present in D.C, there is no public information about the content of the panel.
This is why we at Chillin’Competition have enquired among those who attended about what it was that happened there.
Their testimony is as follows:
- LC. Anonymous MLex Chief Correspondent , “We did our best. If anyone tells you that they remember what went on at the panel, they’re lying”.
- Mary Jane Green, Senior Associate, Wandon & Scott: “It was a very disappointing panel. Bingham´s “Port and Chocolate” reception always delivers what it promises, but the marijuana panel was a fraud; talk about false advertising! ”.
- Adam Smith, Senior Economist: “Nothing special went on. You know, people of the same trade seldom meet together in smoke-filled rooms, even for merriment and diversion. There’s nothing wrong with that”
- S. Senate aide: “It was half baked. The transatlantic perspective was missing. All the European officials interested in the topic were attending the panel on tax rulings…”.
- Panel moderator: “Let’s roll !
- Curro Farlopez, Partner, Baked and Stoned: “I swear I never tried that and I’ll never do it again”
- Senior Associate, Herb Smithsonian, “Best discussion on “Joint” ventures I ever attended“.
- Two LLM students at a Washingdon D.C college, who were denied entry to the panel: “We can’t help you. We toke a joint decision to attend, but the organisers really made a hash of the registrations.”
- Partner, Housefed, “ I smell the greatest collective action case in history”.
If any reader finds out more, please drop us a line.