The Best Answer to Crackdowns on Medical Marijuana? A Medical Marijuana Vending Machine.


Crackdown on the medical marijuana industry, will you, Obama's Justice Department? Here comes the world's best response: a medical marijuana vending machine. This means that weed joins such bracingly irreverent items as beer, cupcakes, and Plan B birth control which can be found (and sometimes objected to) in vending machines across this nation.

Sadly for those who regret their sobriety at 3 a.m., notes LAist, "Autospense," made by Dispense Labs, is serious about security. Only medical marijuana patients are allowed and you need more than exact change for this here machine: 

Firstly, to use Autospense, you must have a medical marijuana prescription and be registered with a participating dispensary. Machines will sit outside participating dispensaries for the monthly cost of $1,500 to $2000. Patients must swipe their registration cards, then enter a PIN number—just like using an ATM (only a different form of "green" is dispensed). The machine accepts cash, credit or debit, and once payment is received, a door opens granting access to the herbal remedy. You can take an AutoSpense Walkthrough on the company website.

Pot pilferers, lower your hopes. When the dispensary closes, the machine will be guarded by a cage that can only be opened by the swipe of a registration card. [Dispense Labs CEO and founder Joe] DeRobbio also noted advanced security features, including fingerprint recognition, cameras and purchase tracking.

The Dispensary Group is "committed to raising the level of legitimacy and accountability in the medical marijuana industry," according to the website, and is "comprised of forward-thinking business leaders, healthcare advocates and technical experts."

The ad below is so purposefully bland that it seems like a parody of something. Clearly they're trying to preempt the stoner joke potential of a weed vending machine. (LAist joked that it's a pity Autospense is so far from the famous cupcake vending machine.)

The smooth-voiced narrator urges viewers to "visit Autospense.com for your nearest autospense location" but for the moment the machine is only available outside one medical marijuana dispensary in Santa Ana. 

Reason on medical marijuana