Nominee to lead the White House’s drug policies used to work for a cannabis company

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Rahul Gupta might be a smart choice as head of the ONDCP for the cannabis industry

It appears that experience in the cannabis industry will be an important aspect of taking the leadership chair of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). President Joe Biden has nominated Rahul Gupta as the next director of this entity after having done important work in a marijuana business last year.

Gupta was an important piece when he worked for nine months in 2020 as a consultant to Holistic Industries, a multi-state cannabis operator (MSO). This type of choice has certainly caught the attention of reform advocates, especially since such a move in government is not so conventional. Still, advocates think that the marijuana industry, in general, could receive a positive impact after such a nomination, as Gupta is known to have had strong relationships with the market.

According to what has been indicated, Gupta’s role at Holistic was based around consulting on compliance issues. It appears that his job was well done during this period, as the company was able to demonstrate compliance with state regulations in West Virginia, obtaining a total of ten medical cannabis retail permits, not to mention processing and cultivation permits. This speaks highly of Gupta’s performance, as only one other company has received as many permits as Holistic in the retail sector. Gupta knew how to adapt to the state program and oversaw a consultancy with flying colors.

Whether Gupta is pro-marijuana or not, it has been reported that now as director of the ONDCP, Gupta is explicitly required by law to oppose all efforts related to currently controlled substances, including cannabis. Prohibitionists say they are optimistic about the election and made it clear that the status quo will be maintained, regardless of his record on cannabis.