Weed sellers hunt buyers online
Since Jamaica's move in 2015 to decriminalise small quantities of ganja for personal use, some eager entrepreneurs have been using various social media platforms to market their products.
With hopes of tapping into the lucrative ganja market, these business owners are posting pictures of the various items that they have to offer on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and are asking customers to connect with them via WhatsApp or phone call to arrange a time and place where transactions can be done.
One man, John Brown*, who says he has been selling ganja and weed-based products for more than three years, uses social media to reach more customers.
"Pon Instagram, mi nuh post the things dem weh mi sell, a just things weh me see online mi post. Mi just use it fi mek people call," he explained. He, however, refused to go into further details about the social media methods he uses to promote his business.
"Mi nuh really sell ganja like that still. Me haffi used to dem (customers) first. A just people weh mi know mi sell it, and mi nuh walk wid much either. A really the brownies, cookies and gummy shots a my thing," he said.
But he is not alone in this field. THE STAR contacted at least two other online ganja sellers, but they declined interviews with our news team.
Nonetheless, Brown said that since he has started selling marijuana, he hasn't had any encounters with the police.
"Police no really trouble me still. Probably a true me nuh really dress like no cruff. Mi no think dem have no need fi trouble mi still," he said.
However, Head of the Corporate Communications Unit of the Jamaica Constabulary Force, Superintendent Stephanie Lindsay, said that persons who market their ganja and weed-based product online are breaking the law unless they have been granted a licence to produce the item.
"They only decriminalised a portion of ganja that is for personal consumption, so ganja is not legalised, it is just like two ounces for medicinal purposes that is decriminalised. But any other use of the ganja apart from those who are legally granted licences to process and to trade, then it is illegal," she told THE STAR.
* Name changed