The Oregon Cannabis Association and the Cannabis Industry Alliance of Oregon announced on October 17 they have unanimously voted to merge the two groups to create a larger, unified voice to represent Oregon cannabis operators. Now operating as the Cannabis Industry Alliance of Oregon, the group represents more than 500 of Oregon’s cannabis businesses.
“This merger makes a clear statement that the industry can, must, and will stand as one,” Cannabis Industry Alliance of Oregon board chair Mike Getlin said in a press release. “We are proud to stand beside our colleagues from the OCA and look forward to working for a better future for all Oregon cannabis businesses and employees.”
The alliance intends to use its stake in the industry to help pilot the state market through the potential federal changes and the ever-changing needs of Oregon’s cannabis businesses.
The trade group will continue to be member-driven, representing the needs of local cannabis businesses regardless of license type or size. The merger has also increased the diversity of represented operators in both industry niche and geographic region of the state, and its leadership has pledged to ensure a diverse and inclusive approach to advocacy.
“With this merger, we embark on a journey that strengthens our ability to advocate for a thriving, safe and respected legal cannabis industry,” OCA president Hunter Neubauer said. “Together, we will champion changes our industry deserves, from modernized regulations to social equity and a stable licensure system.”
According to the press release, the alliance is committed to providing high-level service to its members and includes perks such as regulatory expertise, networking opportunities and its lobbying team which can amplify members’ voices and help author smart policy for Oregon operators.
The OCA was established in 2014 and has played a pivotal role in shaping policy for Oregon’s cannabis businesses.
The CIAO was formed in 2022, through the merger of the Oregon Retailers of Cannabis Association, the Oregon Industry Progress Association and FARMS Inc. The alliance is home to a robust public policy team that has been advocating on behalf of the state’s cannabis operators since 2015.