Kushy Punch Cannabis License Revoked Following Raid

Kushy Punch’s commercial cannabis license was revoked by California cannabis regulators today. Kushy Punch is a popular California cannabis brand, producing vapes and gummies.

The Bureau of Cannabis Control and California Department of Public Health announced the Vertical Bliss, DBA Kushy Punch, license revocation for their commercial facility located at 20500 Nordhoff Street in Chatsworth, California. The announcement follows a raid and allegations of Kushy Punch producing vapes containing pesticides. 

From the BCC’s press release:

“After receiving a complaint about illegal cannabis activity at a location in Canoga Park, state regulators searched the unlicensed location and seized nearly $21 million in illegal cannabis products, including 7,200 illegal vape cartridges. The license for the Nordhoff Street premises was revoked following the discovery of connections between Vertical Bliss and the unlicensed location. The revocations of Vertical Bliss’ cannabis manufacturing license CDPH-10003574 and cannabis distribution license C11-0000544-LIC are effective today, November 21, 2019.

All commercial cannabis activity in California must be conducted on a premises with a valid license issued by the appropriate state cannabis licensing authority. Manufacturing, distributing or selling cannabis goods without a state license or at a location that is not licensed is a violation of state law.

 Alex Traverso, the BCC’s Assistant Chief of Communications, told Candid Chronicle that operating licenses can be revoked even if an operator was not found guilty by a court of law. According to Traverso, this may happen under the condition that “the operator was found to be violating state cannabis regulations.”

The regulations that Kushy Punch violated include operating from an unlicensed facility, one separate from their Chatsworth location. 

On October 2nd, an unlicensed facility in Canoga Park was raided following a tip to the BCC. The raid resulted in the seizure of more than 7,000 Kushy Punch vape cartridges, worth nearly $21 million. 

Allegations also surfaced that Kushy Punch was producing products with cannabis oil containing heavy levels of pesticides.

Kushy Punch released statements that the vapes seized from the Canoga Park facility were set to be destroyed prior to the raid. 

In October, CEO Ruben Cross stated that the “BCC went into an old storage warehouse and found two-year-old disposable vapes with dead batteries than have been off the market even before regulations came around and they assumed we are selling vapes to the black market.”

The BCC confirmed that Kushy Punch products were not being sold from the unlicensed Canoga Park facility. However, the products were being manufactured and stored there. By California law, storage facilities must be licensed by the state.

According to another investigation in Hollister, California, illegal Kushy Punch products were sent to Genesis Marketplace. Hollister Police and dispensary managers found discrepancies amongst the test results and products that were provided to Genesis by Kushy Punch. Reported by sanbenito.com, Genesis Marketplace promptly returned the products to the distributor.

This may not be the end of Kushy Punch, as revoked licenses can be reinstated. According to Alex Traverso from the BCC, the Kushy Punch had a provisional license. 

“Vertical Bliss currently has a pending annual license application in with the state,” added Traverso.

Provisional cannabis licenses in California were created as a temporary fix of many backlogged cannabis license applications. California’s provisional licenses are only valid until January 1, 2020.

“The Bureau – in coordination with the Cannabis Enforcement Unit – will continue to investigate and crackdown on illegal cannabis activity,” Traverso told Candid Chronicle.