Sunday, January 18, 2015

Open letter to honey processors: Change your caps

A flat-topped 5-pound honey bottle; the fat one mentioned was thrown away. 

The other day, I went looking for a honey dispenser with a pointy cap, because the 1 lb flat-topped squirt bottle I had been using was always sticky.  Honey would collect on the flat top and drip down the side when it was used.  It was a fat-top bottle, made to be able to set it upside down for easy dispensing, but that only made it easy for the honey to leak out and make a pool in the cabinet.

I was looking through the honey selection at Fred Meyer and all the containers had the same type of flat top, some with a fatter top for setting the bottle upside down, others with a smaller top of the same design.  I noticed that the Agave Nectar bottles used by Madhava (Madhavasweeteners.com) had a pointed cap that opened to a short cone-shaped dispenser with a sloping cap that looked unlikely for honey to pool on.  I bought it, used it up, and now it is my honey dispenser.

I call on honey packagers to use the kind of cap that Madhava uses for their Agave Nectar.  It is not collecting honey inside the cap and dripping down the side.


Afterword: Madhava replied to my letter: "Thank you for contacting Madhava about our Caps. Your comments have been sent to our quality assurance team! We do appreciate hearing form our customers.

At Madhava Natural Sweeteners, we are dedicated to bringing you natural and healthy alternatives to highly processed, refined sugars and artificial sweeteners.  We always want to make sure you get the highest quality products possible."

I found this a bit puzzling, until I was shopping at Walmart and stopped to look at the Agave Nectar, and found that Madhava had switched to the same flat caps as the honey processors.  Next to their product, there was another brand that had the same kind of caps as the one above, Nature's Agave:


Saturday, January 3, 2015

Open Letter to petitioners re #Measure48 Mississippi

Mississippi Measure 48 is a proposed constitutional amendment, posted at http://www.mississippiforcannabis.org/ .  I have a question about its "locality tax," licenses, and fees.   Answers and further discussion will be edited into this post.

" ...Regulations will require an annual Mississippi Cannabis Sales license issued by any Mississippi County Circuit Clerk for a fee of no more than $1000.00 to all adult residents who apply, and a $25.00 annual city or county governing locality fee to farm 10 - 500 plants. Locality fees for cannabis farms with more than 500 plants will not exceed $1000.00...."

At first this "locality fee" sounded like a flat yearly fee, but the last sentence above makes it clear that is wrong.  Is it $25 per plant?  If so, it should say "per plant" after "$25."

But it couldn't be $25 per plant, because 500 plants times $25 is $12,500.  501 plants, however, would only be $1000.  A fee of $25 plus $5 per plant would still be $2,525 for $500 plants.  The locality fee part makes no mathematical sense.

@msforcannabis replied:  "The fee is only for 10 or more plants and is $25 / plant not to exceed $1000. Tax statement is correct"

@AnRycke replies:  And yet it says, "Locality fees for cannabis farms with 500 plants will not exceed $1000," clearly not including farms with less than 500 plants in the $1000 limit.  Remember, you won't get to interpret this when it goes to court; a judge will, and a judge will go by the words, not your intent.


You might rethink making this a constitutional amendment.  A statute can be more detailed and is far easier for the legislature to fix.


In my opinion, the Mississippi Cannabis Sales license should be one-time, and the locality fee should be a lot lower and not plant-based.  What other kind of farms anywhere are charged a per-plant tax?  Who will count the plants?  At what size or level of maturity?


"...Owners of 9 or fewer cannabis plants are not considered farmers and are not required to pay a farming locality fee..."

Is one required to pay the $1000 for the annual Mississippi Cannabis Sales license for growing 1-9 plants even if one is not selling?  It sure looks like it, which would make cannabis growing a privilege of the rich in Mississippi.  The only requirement for selling regarding the license is in the title of the license.

"...The 7% cannabis sales tax, and the farming locality fees may be reviewed in 2025 and every 5 years thereafter. The cannabis sales tax can only be lowered; farming locality fees may be adjusted but only by 10%...."

This sounds like the locality fees can be adjusted 10% up or down, but there is no allowance for review or adjustment for the annual $1000 Mississippi Cannabis Sales license.

Please clarify your measure before collecting signatures on it.