CBS Rejects Super Bowl Marijuana Commercial

Acreage Holdings wanted to air a pro-cannabis PSA

Photo by Patrick Smith/Staff/Getty Images

Plenty of testimonials from advocates and patients will clue nonbelievers into the therapeutic and health benefits of cannabis—just don’t expect to hear them at the Super Bowl this year. According to multiple reports, CBS rejected a pro-marijuana advertisement from Acreage Holdings that would’ve run at this year’s championship game.

Acreage Holdings received the following email from the network: “CBS will not be accepting any ads for medical marijuana at this time.”

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The ad Acreage proposed featured three different patients who have benefited from medical marijuana. Acreage, a company that integrates the cultivation, processing, and dispensing business of cannabis, stated the ad differed from previously controversial ads denied by networks, as it did not feature any its products. Instead it was more of a public service announcement raising awareness around medical marijuana.

“We’re not particularly surprised that CBS and/or the NFL rejected the content,” Acreage president George Allen told USA TODAY. “And that is actually less a statement about them and more we think a statement about where we stand right now in this country.”

CBS will charge around $5 million for a 30-second advertisement during the Super Bowl, which Acreage was reportedly willing to pay. The Super Bowl has averaged about 100 million viewers over the past several years.

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By going public with the rejection, Acreage will use the attention to draw interested parties to the company’s website, where a completed version of the add will be published.

“We developed the ad in the spirit of a public service announcement. We feel it’s our responsibility to advocate on behalf of our patients,” Allen told CNN Business.

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