A new state law allowing recreational use of cannabis, but only for medicinal purposes, has gone into effect.
It comes as recreational use is poised to become more popular in the state and could eventually help bring more recreational use into the mainstream.
Recreational marijuana is now legal in Oregon.
Key points: Recreational use of recreational cannabis is now permitted under a new state rule, which comes into effect in October 2020.
Recreationally used cannabis can be used for medicinal or recreational purposes, and is taxed at $50 per gram.
The state is allowing users to grow their own cannabis at home for medicinal use.
The recreational use bill, which goes into effect on October 1, is the latest step in the legalisation of recreational use in the western United States.
“It’s going to help with the growing of cannabis,” said Dr Michael Mather, a professor of medicine and director of the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis Research at Oregon Health & Science University.
“We’re in a really good position in Oregon to be able to make this happen.
We have a lot of medical cannabis providers.”
But for some, recreational cannabis could prove to be a big hassle.
For recreational users, the new rules come as recreational cannabis grows rapidly in popularity in the US.
In October, more than 10 million legal pot plants were harvested in Oregon, a rise of almost a third in a decade, according to the Oregon Health Authority.
There have also been growing concerns over the legal status of recreational marijuana in the states neighbouring Washington and Colorado, where recreational use will begin in 2024.
The state has a recreational cannabis market worth $1.3 billion, with about $200 million in taxes collected.
“This law was not written to create a situation where recreational cannabis has to be sold in retail stores, and it’s not,” said state Rep. Matt Schreiner, who introduced the recreational cannabis bill.
“I think this is a step in that direction.”
The new rules allow people aged 21 and over to possess up to four ounces of cannabis at a time.
The limit is also set at 100 grams, which is equivalent to a small amount of a joint.
Recreants are also required to wear an approved medical cannabis mask while smoking, and to undergo a background check.
The new law also makes it legal for people to buy cannabis from growers, as long as the supply is legal.
Dr Mather said the law would have helped the industry grow in Oregon in the past.
“When we started the medical cannabis market in Oregon we were looking for a way to increase our market, and the first thing we looked at was the medicinal cannabis market,” he said.
“As we started to grow the medicinal market, we saw the demand and we saw a lot more money going into it.”
Dr M.C. said the new law was just the beginning of the future for recreational cannabis in Oregon and beyond.
“The first step is to see what other states are doing,” he told Al Jazeera.
“And the other things that are coming up are going to take this further.”
Mather said that for recreational users in the next couple of years, the legal age to buy recreational cannabis will be raised from 18 to 21, and that recreational cannabis can only be used to treat symptoms of medical conditions.
“For people with chronic conditions, it’s just going to be really hard to get the cannabis if you don’t have the right prescription,” he explained.
“There’s no way to get a prescription for medical cannabis from a doctor.”
The medical cannabis industry in the United States is estimated to be worth $14.6 billion, according the Cannabis Business Research Institute.