DENVER — Snoop Dogg has his own line of marijuana. So does Willie Nelson. Melissa Etheridge has a marijuana-infused wine.

As the fast-growing marijuana industry emerges from the black market and starts looking like a mainstream industry, there’s a scramble to brand and trademark pot products.

The celebrity endorsements are just the latest attempt to add cachet to a line of weed. Snoop Dogg calls his eight strains of weed “Dank From the Doggfather Himself.” Nelson’s yet-to-be-released line says the pot is “born of the awed memories of musicians who visited Willie’s bus after a show.”

The pot industry’s makeshift branding efforts, from celebrity names on boxes of weed to the many weed-themed T-shirts and stickers common in towns with a legal marijuana market, show the industry taking halting steps toward the mainstream.

Problem is, those weed brands aren’t much more substantial than the labels they’re printed on. The federal government considers marijuana an illegal drug and therefore ineligible for any sort of patent or trademark protection.

The result is a Wild West environment of marijuana entrepreneurs trying to stake claims and establish cross-state markets using a patchwork of state laws.

Consumers have no way of knowing that celebrity-branded pot is any different than what they could get in a plastic baggie from a corner drug dealer.

“You can’t go into federal court to get federal benefits if you’re a drug dealer,” said Sam Kamin, a University of Denver law professor who tracks marijuana law.

That doesn’t mean the pot business isn’t trying.

Hundreds of marijuana-related patents have likely been requested from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, according to those who work in the industry. Exact numbers aren’t available because pending patent information isn’t public.

So far, federal authorities have either ignored or rejected marijuana patent and trademark requests, as in the 2010 case of a California weed-delivery service that applied to trademark its name, “The Canny Bus.”

“We’re in a new industry, where the benefits of federal protection aren’t open to us,” said John Lord, CEO of LivWell, a 10-store chain of Colorado marijuana shops that recently entered an agreement to sell Leafs By Snoop, the entertainer’s new line of marijuana.

LivWell grows the Snoop pot alongside many other strains but charges up to $175 more an ounce for the rapper’s brand, which is sold from behind a glittery in-store display.

“Brand differentiation is the normal progression of events,” said Lord, who wouldn’t share sales figures on the Snoop pot but says its performance has been “outstanding.”

“Consumers will see more and more of this in the future.”