The ZaZZZ machine, made by American Green, started dispensing marijuana flower buds to customers this week, but only in medical pot dispensaries where their age and identity can be verified.
American Green’s vending machines appeared in Colorado last year, but sold only edible pot products or cannabis-infused foods. This time, they dispense cannabis flower buds, often associated with smoking pot.
"It's historic, there's just no other way to state it. We saw the repeal of prohibition in the early 20th century and the mark that made on our country and the companies that did it right," Greg Patrick, a spokesman for American Green. "We're in that stage. This will only happen once in our country's history, the repeal of this prohibition."
ZaZZZ touch screen machines, meant to speed up the distribution process for those who don’t want to wait in line at a dispensary, allow buyers to make orders and read medical information about the products.
— American Green (@American__Green) February 2, 2015
They are only available to customers who swipe their medical pot IDs or driver’s licenses, and pay in cash or bitcoin, in accordance with federal laws that prohibit the use of debit or credit cards on weed sales.
"Once you swipe your ID, you can go shopping on the screen," Patrick said. "You can be in and out — literally — in a matter of minutes."
Although American Green has succeeded in creating a machine that makes it convenient for customers to obtain weed for recreational use in each of Washington and Colorado, the maker still has one obstacle. It has to partner with growers in those states since medical marijuana cannot be shipped across state lines under federal laws.
American Green aims to take the machines to other venues outside medical marijuana dispensaries in the future, ensuring that ZaZZZ, which doesn’t have a glass window that could be broken into, is secure.
"That machine is like a miniature little Fort Knox," Patrick said.