For many years, CottonMouth Smoke Shop has sold every imaginable piece of weed paraphernalia.
From rolling papers to bongs, pipes, and vaporizers, the longtime Vancouver head shop has made a name for itself as a go-to head shop in the West End.
CottonMouth has also educated customers about all things pot, including which place to get good stuff.
Operator 0710674 B.C. Ltd. declared in a letter to the City of Vancouver that although CottonMouth is a proponent of weed culture, it has never sold pot.
The numbered company wrote the letter because it now wants to retail pot at its 1120 Davie Street store.
It’s by popular demand, according to the firm.
“Our customers have commented that they would much rather purchase their legal cannabis from us because they an established trusted relationship with us, and know the kind of service and education they will receive,” the CottonMouth operator wrote.
CottonMouth has good ties with its clients and a “loyal customer base, largely due to the service and non-judgemental [sic] education they receive when shopping”.
“While CottonMouth has never provided cannabis, we have always provided education about it,” the company stated. “This is what we are passionate about, and why CottonMouth was opened almost 14 years ago.”
According to the firm, it would “love to be able to offer our customers a one-stop shop for all of their cannabis needs”.
“Many of our customers are seniors living in the West End who come to use because they feel safe, have gotten to know us over the years and know that we are here to help,” the company wrote. “We are also LGBTQ+ owned and have strong ties to the vibrant LGBTQ+ neighbourhood we are located in.”
As part of its development application to change the use of its store from commercial retail to pot retail, the company is also asking the city to relax its 300-metre rule.
CottonMouth is 280 metres from the Lord Roberts School Annex at 1150 Nelson Street.
According to city regulations, a weed shop is not permitted if it is within 300 metres of another pot store, elementary or secondary school, neighbourhood house, and community centre.
The company explained that “judging by actual walking distance”, CottonMouth is actually 500 metres away from the school.
“Provided that the storefront is tasteful, with no cannabis advertising and no on site consumption, we propose that we are far enough removed from Lord Roberts School Annex, especially taking into consideration all the other nearby businesses along Davie Street,” the store operator explained.