Ask a Stoner: Can Cryptocurrency Solve Marijuana's Banking Problem?

Dear Stoner: Why don’t more dispensaries accept cryptocurrency? Couldn’t that help with the whole all-cash, no-banking issue?

Dear Joanna:
Cryptocurrency is one of several suggested fixes for the cannabis industry’s banking problem, but it’s not a realistic solution for cashless dispensary transactions just yet. There are apps and services for retailers that convert dollars into cryptocurrency, and at least one dispensary in Boulder, Helping Hands, was accepting cashless payments that were later converted into Bitcoin, but there still needs to be a U.S. dollar involved at some point so that the state can count and tax the transactions.
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Stop at your bank before hitting up a dispensary, unless you want to be stuck with ATM fees.
Scott Lentz
Cannabis businesses could theoretically convert profits into crypto instead of paying the fees that banks charge for serving a federally illegal industry, but with so many regulations and the looming prospect of federal legalization, most businesses prefer the traditional, more transparent route for now.

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