Marijuana industry and banking
Medical marijuana banking
In a move that lives up to its name, Orlando-based First Green Bank will be the first bank in the state to offer services to the growing medical marijuana business.
First Green Bank is already serving six of the state’s first seven licensed medical marijuana businesses and will likely be serving all of them by the end of the year. They are also serving any doctors and vendors working in the industry as well.
Marijuana is legal for approved medical uses in 29 states in the country and only eight states for recreational uses, however it is still illegal under federal law. Dispensaries have been operating on a cash-only basis, as they are not allowed to accept credit cards or checks, forcing many dispensary-owners to carry large sums of money with them to purchase money orders or to store the funds by unsafe means in large quantities.
Money collected from dispensaries by First Green Bank is being delivered directly to the Federal Reserve, in an effort to keep other bank business separate from medical marijuana funds.
Other forms of decentralized digital currencies like PotCoin have risen as makeshift solutions to handling cash transactions.