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Will Uruguay’s nationalized pot industry work?

MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay — With the tiny Latin American country of Uruguay poised to become the first country on earth to regulate the cultivation and distribution of marijuana, legislators here are turning their minds to how to make the country’s grand experiment actually work.

As the conversation shifts from philosophical to practical, sticky business questions are arising: How do you set the price for a commodity that to date has only been available on the down-low? Should adults be allowed to provide pot to minors in their care? And, to some, the most terrifying question of all: What happens if there’s a reefer famine that affects production?

Interviews with top officials in the ruling Broad Front coalition and with foot soldiers of the grassroots campaign for legalization offered limited answers to these questions.

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