(I)n a surprise move, Illinois Restaurant Association president Sam Toia opposes allowing bars and restaurants to apply for consumption licenses.
“Who gets these licenses? I don’t think you can give incidental licenses to all restaurants. There’s only gonna be so many licenses that are gonna get out and that won’t be a level playing field,” Toia said.
“We want to make sure that [recreational marijuana is] is not competing with our great culinary scene. Restaurants are here to serve food. Bars are here to serve spirits, wine and beer and show great events. So we at the restaurant association feel, just let the dispensaries dispense” and allow consumption.
* I reached out to Toia via email…
Why couldn’t they give non-smoking consumption licenses to any restaurant which applies? Several chefs will want to infuse food and drinks, so why should that all be completely banned?
* His response…
The IRA looks forward to reviewing Mayor Lightfoot and the City Council’s proposals and various concepts for cannabis consumption as conversations continue in the coming weeks. We appreciate the opportunity to be at the table on this important issue.
* The Question: Should restaurants in communities that have approved the sale of cannabis be allowed to serve food and beverages infused with cannabis? Make sure to explain your answer. And, remember, this isn’t about toking up at your local eatery.