Breaking News and News You Can Use

May 16, 2019
Why There Aren’t More CBD Strains (and Why That’s About to Change)
A look at the brief history of CBD and a peak into the future.
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May 16, 2019
All Recreationally Legal States And Their Laws
A concise summary of recreational cannabis laws for each state.
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May 16, 2019
CBD and sleep: Does it work? Is it safe?
Millions of people deal with chronic sleep disorder. Can CBD help those people fall asleep safely?
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May 15, 2019
The risk of contaminants and false labeling in the exploding CBD industry
CBD is a growing market, but not all CBD is created equal. Many transparency problems exist.
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May 14, 2019
Can CBD Really Do All That?
The New York Times examines CBD and both its benefits and limitations
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May 13, 2019
Cannabis lounges are coming to Las Vegas. Is Sin City the next Amsterdam of weed tourism?
For two years, tourists here have dealt with a cannabis conundrum: All over this glittering town, there are shops selling weed but nowhere to smoke it. That soon will change.
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May 13, 2019
NY marijuana: What to know about cannabis jobs, pot college and immigrant weed workers
Legalizing recreational pot could create about 30,700 jobs, according to a Rockefeller Institute of Government study. That would surpass the 13,000 workers in craft brewing but fall below the 62,000 in the state’s thriving wine industry according to one study.
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April 30, 2019
Welcome to the internet’s most comprehensive resource for all things cannabidiol
A good resource to learn about CBD
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April 9, 2019
1 Big Reason Why U.S. Marijuana Legalization Might Actually Happen This Year
Federal legalization may happen quicker than most people think.
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March 28, 2019
Walgreens to sell CBD products in 1,500 stores
CBD is going mainstream.
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March 28, 2019
Bill to let banks work with cannabis companies advances in U.S. House
Banking in the cannabis industry is about to get a lot easier.
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March 25, 2019
Cannabis country: Marijuana drives new industry in Central Mass. cities, towns
This is how legalization of cannabis can turn around the economies dying towns.
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March 23, 2019
10 things you need to know about bill to expand medical weed program in N.J.
A quick summary of where NJ is at in its medical marijuana program.
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March 22, 2019
Africa’s cannabis industry could burgeon into a $7bn affair
There are opportunities all over the globe for cannabis, including Africa.
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March 22, 2019
Canada’s legalization of marijuana offers a blueprint for the U.S.
The US can learn a lot from how Canada has approached legalization. It can avoid some mistakes as well.
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March 21, 2019
Do CBD beauty and skin care products actually work?
CBD as a skin treatment: It may not just be hype.
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March 20, 2019
REPORT: MARIJUANA IS THE FASTEST GROWING JOB SECTOR IN THE U.S.
The United States added 64,389 full-time legal cannabis jobs last year — a 44 percent increase in the weed workforce in 2018, meaning it’s the fastest-growing job sector in the U.S. right now.
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March 19, 2019
CBD for cancer: Everything you need to know
CBD can help those suffering from Cancer.
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March 6, 2019
How Big Could the Marijuana Industry Grow?
Can cannabis become bigger than soda worldwide? Some analysts think so.
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March 5, 2019
Marijuana legalization is winning the 2020 Democratic primaries
Looks like federal cannabis legalization will be a platform issue in the next presidential election.
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March 5, 2019
NJ marijuana legalization: Legal weed timeline, licenses and other questions answered
New Jersey's legal cannabis expansion is just around the corner.
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March 5, 2019
NJ marijuana dealers say black market will be 'business as usual,' even with legal weed
An in-depth look at the black market of cannabis.
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March 1, 2019
Promising or harmful? A debate ensues after Thailand legalises medical cannabis Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/cnainsider/promising-harmful-debate-thailand-legalises-medical-cannabis-11240976
Following South Korea in Northeast Asia, Thailand is the first domino to fall for medical cannabis in Southeast Asia.
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March 1, 2019
Countries Around the Globe Soften Their Stance on Cannabis use
Legalization of medical cannabis is growing worldwide, even in countries that long held hard-line stances against all drugs.
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February 12, 2019
Senator Ron Wyden introduces S. 420, a bill to legalize marijuana
Serious talks of federal legalization are beginning, but the debate will be probably be a long one.
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February 12, 2019
California Gives Green Light to Marijuana Home Delivery
New state regulation makes it easier to buy cannabis in previously prohibited areas, but local authorities are pushing back.
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February 2, 2019
Colorado marijuana sales crack $6 billion since 2014 legalization
Marijuana has been a big win for Colorado
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February 1, 2019
Congressional Committee Could Take Up Marijuana Reform ‘Fairly Soon,’ Chairman Says
Legalization looks on track to happen sooner rather than later
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February 1, 2019
Cramer's pot predictions for 2019: Legalization, deals, branding goes big
Cramer gives his cannabis predictions for 2019.
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January 22, 2019
Canadians spent $54M on cannabis in first month after legalization
Canadians bought $54 million of marijuana from stores in the first full month after sales were legalized, some of the clearest evidence yet of the market’s potential.
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January 22, 2019
Cannabis officials: Nearly $24M in legal pot sales in first 2 months
Recreational cannabis in Massachusetts has had a very nice start.
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January 22, 2019
Cannabis cafes are coming
Cannabis cafes might become a thing in the next few years.
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January 7, 2019
Oregon Bill Would Legalize Interstate Cannabis Exports
Interstate cannabis sales would be a game changer.
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January 4, 2019
Connecticut House Speaker Pledges To Push Marijuana Legalization Forward In 2019
More evidence that federal legalization will happen sooner rather than later.
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December 28, 2019
2019 Playbook: Marijuana
A video about what trends to expect in 2019 in the cannabis industry.
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January 4, 2019
Walls won't secure the US-Mexico border, but cannabis legalization will, says think tank
Amid a government shutdown over the Trump proposal for a wall between Mexico and the US, comes this fresh perspective.
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January 1, 2019
These States Are Most Likely To Legalize Marijuana In 2019
This article from Forbes outlines the prospects for state legalization in 2018.
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December 24, 2018
Mayor of New York Backs Marijuana Legalization
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has staked New York’s claim on the cannabis industry in New York by voicing his support for cannabis. His comments were made following New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s plan to legalize cannabis across the state. The mayor went on to state that if New York legalizes cannabis, then past low-level cannabis convictions should be reversed and that cannabis sales should be “closed to corporate interests”. The mayor emphasized that the cannabis market should be heavily open to Hispanic and African-American New York residents who have for too long been unjustly targeted for drug use. He hopes that by legalizing cannabis the right way, New Yorkers will be provided new opportunities to succeed. In the process, the mayor wants to “choke off corporate America in the process and not let them get their greedy hands on the industry in New York.
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December 24, 2018
South Africa Poised for Cannabis Trade Despite Obstacles
It has been a good year for cannabis in South Africa in 2018 especially after the Constitutional Court upheld the legalization of the adult use and cultivation of pot in private this past September. Cannabis advocates in South Africa have rejoiced at the incredible steps the country has taken to legalize the plant. However, the same advocates still realize that there are many obstacles they must overcome before a legal marijuana market can thrive in the country. Even with positive forward steps, buying and selling cannabis for recreational purposes remains illegal. Despite continued restrictions on recreational cannabis, a cannabis expo was held in Preroria which was the country’s first. Although the plant was prohibited from the expo for all the participants, the crowded and popular event reflected the view that cannabis has big business potential especially for export. Experts and advocates say that South Africa has a good growing climate for cannabis making it even more likely that the country has the potential to become “an active player” in the market for cannabis-related goods.
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December 21, 2018
Will Marijuana Legalization Be Our Christmas Gift From Congress in 2019?
The idea of weed becoming legal on a national level may not be a far-fetched idea. Many fingers point towards federal legalization especially with the Farm Bill being passed which now allows states to cultivate hemp. The fact that Trump signed the bill is a good sign that things are moving in the right direction for cannabis. Many cannabis advocates feel that 2019 will be the year Congress finally pushes full steam ahead to fully legalizing cannabis nationwide. Furthermore, with the Democrats taking back control of the U.S. House of Representatives, the door for cannabis legalization has opened up even more. The hope is that with Democrats leading the way, more cannabis bills will be introduced to the House floor in 2019. Many lobbyists from various industry sectors are also joining forces to garner enough votes for the States Act. The States Act will allow states the freedom to legalize cannabis without federal interference. Many business experts believe that the States Act is the best chance the U.S has at stopping the national cannabis economy migrating to Canada.
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December 20, 2018
Father Fights to Legalize Marijuana in Bid to Help Son
The Drug Enforcement Agency still considers marijuana a Schedule 1 drug putting it alongside such drugs as heroin, LSD, and ecstasy. Even with many states legalizing cannabis either medicinally or recreationally and in some cases both, cannabis is still currently federally prohibited. The current federal cannabis restrictions have made it very difficult for those families with ailing children to get access to medicine infused with cannabis to treat their loved ones. Now a group of patients, families, and activists are taking the Justice Department to court. They are challenging and appealing a decision in a lawsuit to erase marijuana from the Schedule 1 list. Their ultimate goal is to pave the way for cannabis legalization across the nation. The people who are suing the Justice Department include an Army veteran and a former NFL player. Depending on the result of the lawsuit, the group could get a new trial or end up petitioning to the Supreme Court.
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December 19, 2018
U.S. Cannabis Companies Set to Steal Canada’s Thunder in 2019
2019 can’t come any sooner for many US cannabis companies. Many predict that 2019 will be America’s time in the cannabis industry. After Canada went fully legal this past October, many investors have been focusing more on the U.S as they believe that it won’t be long before U.S follows suit. In a recent BDS Analytics report, U.S. consumer spending on legal cannabis is projected to hit US$20.9 billion by 2021 compared with US$4.5 billion in Canada. With the Canadian cannabis market suffering from first year growing pains including supply shortages and disappointing earnings, investors have noticed at the same time that the U.S. market has accelerated with more states legalizing cannabis in one form or another. Another sign showing the US government’s acceptance of cannabis is its recent legalization of hemp and its extracts in its farm bill. There are hundreds of businesses in the U.S. that are starting to create business plans for the cannabis market in the United States. It seems that “a new kid” is ready to take over the neighborhood and take control over.
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December 24, 2018
Mayor of New York Backs Marijuana Legalization
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has staked New York’s claim on the cannabis industry in New York by voicing his support for cannabis. His comments were made following New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s plan to legalize cannabis across the state. The mayor went on to state that if New York legalizes cannabis, then past low-level cannabis convictions should be reversed and that cannabis sales should be “closed to corporate interests”. The mayor emphasized that the cannabis market should be heavily open to Hispanic and African-American New York residents who have for too long been unjustly targeted for drug use. He hopes that by legalizing cannabis the right way, New Yorkers will be provided new opportunities to succeed. In the process, the mayor wants to “choke off corporate America in the process and not let them get their greedy hands on the industry in New York.
READ MORE >
December 24, 2018
South Africa Poised for Cannabis Trade Despite Obstacles
It has been a good year for cannabis in South Africa in 2018 especially after the Constitutional Court upheld the legalization of the adult use and cultivation of pot in private this past September. Cannabis advocates in South Africa have rejoiced at the incredible steps the country has taken to legalize the plant. However, the same advocates still realize that there are many obstacles they must overcome before a legal marijuana market can thrive in the country. Even with positive forward steps, buying and selling cannabis for recreational purposes remains illegal. Despite continued restrictions on recreational cannabis, a cannabis expo was held in Preroria which was the country’s first. Although the plant was prohibited from the expo for all the participants, the crowded and popular event reflected the view that cannabis has big business potential especially for export. Experts and advocates say that South Africa has a good growing climate for cannabis making it even more likely that the country has the potential to become “an active player” in the market for cannabis-related goods.
READ MORE >
December 21, 2018
Will Marijuana Legalization Be Our Christmas Gift From Congress in 2019?
The idea of weed becoming legal on a national level may not be a far-fetched idea. Many fingers point towards federal legalization especially with the Farm Bill being passed which now allows states to cultivate hemp. The fact that Trump signed the bill is a good sign that things are moving in the right direction for cannabis. Many cannabis advocates feel that 2019 will be the year Congress finally pushes full steam ahead to fully legalizing cannabis nationwide. Furthermore, with the Democrats taking back control of the U.S. House of Representatives, the door for cannabis legalization has opened up even more. The hope is that with Democrats leading the way, more cannabis bills will be introduced to the House floor in 2019. Many lobbyists from various industry sectors are also joining forces to garner enough votes for the States Act. The States Act will allow states the freedom to legalize cannabis without federal interference. Many business experts believe that the States Act is the best chance the U.S has at stopping the national cannabis economy migrating to Canada.
READ MORE >
December 20, 2018
Father Fights to Legalize Marijuana in Bid to Help Son
The Drug Enforcement Agency still considers marijuana a Schedule 1 drug putting it alongside such drugs as heroin, LSD, and ecstasy. Even with many states legalizing cannabis either medicinally or recreationally and in some cases both, cannabis is still currently federally prohibited. The current federal cannabis restrictions have made it very difficult for those families with ailing children to get access to medicine infused with cannabis to treat their loved ones. Now a group of patients, families, and activists are taking the Justice Department to court. They are challenging and appealing a decision in a lawsuit to erase marijuana from the Schedule 1 list. Their ultimate goal is to pave the way for cannabis legalization across the nation. The people who are suing the Justice Department include an Army veteran and a former NFL player. Depending on the result of the lawsuit, the group could get a new trial or end up petitioning to the Supreme Court.
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December 19, 2018
U.S. Cannabis Companies Set to Steal Canada’s Thunder in 2019
2019 can’t come any sooner for many US cannabis companies. Many predict that 2019 will be America’s time in the cannabis industry. After Canada went fully legal this past October, many investors have been focusing more on the U.S as they believe that it won’t be long before U.S follows suit. In a recent BDS Analytics report, U.S. consumer spending on legal cannabis is projected to hit US$20.9 billion by 2021 compared with US$4.5 billion in Canada. With the Canadian cannabis market suffering from first year growing pains including supply shortages and disappointing earnings, investors have noticed at the same time that the U.S. market has accelerated with more states legalizing cannabis in one form or another. Another sign showing the US government’s acceptance of cannabis is its recent legalization of hemp and its extracts in its farm bill. There are hundreds of businesses in the U.S. that are starting to create business plans for the cannabis market in the United States. It seems that “a new kid” is ready to take over the neighborhood and take control over.
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December 14, 2018
NJ Marijuana Legalization Delayed, Again, As More Town Ban it
The road to weed legalization in NJ seems to be getting tougher and tougher as more towns have passed laws to prohibit cannabis from entering their towns once cannabis is legal for recreational use. To compound the matter, legalization will not happen this year even though the state Senate and Assembly committees agreed to push the bill through for a vote last month. Many towns have taken initial steps to ban sales, manufacturing and farming of cannabis. It’s unclear when the issue of cannabis legalization will be addressed again, as a meeting with Gov. Phil Murphy with state Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin didn’t produce any positive results. There is disagreement between the Murphy administration and the senate president on how the legislation should proceed. One of the biggest issues that has hindered the progress of the legislation is the taxation on marijuana. There seems to be disagreement on how much marijuana should be taxed. Gov. Murphy is optimistic that a compromise will be reached and that recreational cannabis will be legalized in the NJ sooner than later.
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December 13, 2018
Canopy Growth Expects to Enter US for CBD Opportunity
The Canadian cannabis producing giant Canopy Growth is making plans to enter the US market by the end of 2019. CEO Bruce Linton is quoted as saying that he expects Canopy to have some type of presence in the US market by late 2019. The CEO’s announcement comes at a perfect time as the US Senate voted to approve the Farm Bill which has a provision that legalizes the production and sale of industrial hemp in the US. Currently, the farming and manufacturing of hemp is federally illegal in the US due to its association to cannabis. Hemp is one of many CBDs that is naturally found in cannabis plants. The CBD market in the US is a market to keep an eye on as more businesses are looking into expanding into the CBD space. According to some estimates, the current US CBD market brings in about $418 million in sales. It is predicted that future sales of CBD will reach as high as $1.6 billion by 2021.
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December 12, 2018
Congress Just Voted to Legalize Hemp
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s bid to legalize hemp in the U.S. has become a reality. Congress has officially voted to legalize hemp. Hemp originates from the cannabis plant and is a non-psychoactive agent. Hemp is generally used for industrial purposes for its fiber. Specifically, industrial hemp is used to manufacture paper, cardboard, carpets, clothes, etc. Under current federal law, hemp production and sales are illegal due to its affiliation to the cannabis plant which is still federally illegal. The bill which is called the Farm Bill legalizes only hemp and not recreational or medical cannabis. The bill was introduced by several high profiled senators including McConnell earlier this year. Senator McConnell has been the most vocal in his attempts to legalize hemp. His ultimate goal is the open up new jobs for his home state through legal hemp. With this new bill, farmers will now be able to grow hemp without any restrictions from the government.
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December 12, 2018
Recreational Marijuana Could Come to New York in 2019
Legalization of recreational cannabis in New York may come as early as 2019 according to cannabis legalization advocates. Many are hinting that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo will call on the legislature to legalize cannabis. Most likely he will bring up the subject during his first budget address in 2019. According to a spokesman for the governor, his team is currently drafting legislation on the matter. In August 2018, Cuomo created a 16 member team to devise a legislation and to hold public hearings on the matter. The sole purpose of this group was to make legislative suggestions based on a multi-agency study focused on “regulated cannabis”. The study concluded that the advantages of regulated cannabis in New York State outweighed the disadvantages. The New York Drug Policy Alliance is hoping that Gov. Cuomo’s plan will eventually overturn many minor cannabis convictions and provide ample opportunities for the minority communities.
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December 11, 2018
Brooklyn Offers Expedited Expungement Sessions This Week
Although New York has been frustratingly slow to legalize cannabis, Brooklyn has taken steps to speed up the process. The Brooklyn’s Districts Attorney’s office is offering two free expedited community-based sessions this week to reverse past convictions for minor to low-level cannabis infractions. New York’s efforts to reform the city’s criminal justice system has been slow, but the NYPD has stopped the incarceration of people who smoke weed. Furthermore, Brooklyn’s District Attorney Eric Gonzalez has stopped prosecuting minor possession and public smoking cases. Statistics don’t lie. Since implementing the policy change, possession cases have dropped a jaw dropping 98.5 percent in less than a year. To help promote decriminalization, Brooklyn will participate in initiatives, like the National Expungement Week to overturn past cannabis convictions. This program will allow individuals who were arrested for a misdemeanor cannabis possession to file for a motion to have their records erased.
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December 11, 2018
Surgeon General Blames Lack of Marijuana Research on Schedule 1 Status
U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams provided insight onto why cannabis is still listed as a Schedule I drug under the U.S. Controlled Substance Act (CSA). According to Adams, the main reason why cannabis is still listed at a Schedule I drug is because of the lack of research on the plant. The reason for the lack of research in the field is primarily due to the cost and entry barriers doctors and researchers face if they try to study the plant. The Attorney General supports the idea of rescheduling medical cannabis and views medical cannabis “like any other drug”. However, Adams still doesn’t support the idea of recreational cannabis or adult use. He is also against smoking cannabis, even for medical purposes. Despite his views, Adams wants to base his policy decisions on scientific research and results.
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December 10, 2018
New Zealand Passes Laws to Make Medical Marijuana Widely Available
Another victory for cannabis advocates as New Zealand’s government has passed a law making medical cannabis legal for use. After years of campaigning, patients in NZ now have the opportunity to have access to medical cannabis to treat their chronic pain. Furthermore, the law will immediately allow terminally ill patients to smoke illegal cannabis without federal prosecution. The passing of this law paves the way for a planned referendum on recreational cannabis use which will be considered in about two years. The new cannabis policy will also benefit New Zealand manufacturing companies that produce medical cannabis products locally and internationally. Specifically, this new law will help the Maori communities who hope to develop the illegal industry into a profitable legal one. The law will definitely be a game changer for many people on the island. Although cannabis use is common on the island, it is still restricted and illegal on all levels.
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December 9, 2018
Growing Close: After 2-Year Wait, Medical Marijuana Available Soon
After patiently waiting for several years, North Dakota is well on its way to becoming the next state to legalize medical marijuana. The state has been waiting for legalization since 2016 when the initial measure was introduced. Now it has become a reality for the state. The North Dakota Department of Health has given permission to two manufacturing companies to produce medical cannabis in the state. They also selected four dispensaries to start operating in selected cities. Although the law is being pushed through, there are still many things to complete before dispensaries can officially open. Most importantly, the dispensaries need to wait for the cannabis manufacturers to start producing medication before supplies can be distributed and sold. With the news of imminent legalization, about 130 residents have applied to become registered patients. At the moment, North Dakota will allow up to a total of 8 dispensaries in the state to open. The state will allow more location if needed.
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December 7, 2018
WHO Postpones Recommendation for Rescheduling Cannabis at UN Summit
The much anticipated international rescheduling of cannabis will have to wait just a little bit longer as the World Health Organization has decided to postpone its recommendations. It was decided that they needed more time to review their finds. Along with cannabis, other substances were to be included in the recommendation which will need more time for evaluation. It is expected that a vote will take place sometime next year in March. Representatives from various governments, NGOs and the press who were all expecting a historic day were all given the bad news. Although the outcome of the recommendations has been delayed, representatives from around the world are hopeful that a positive outcome will rule the day when that time comes.
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December 6, 2018
Marijuana Retailer MedMen Facing Class Action Lawsuit From Former Employees
One of the biggest names in the cannabis industry is facing a class action lawsuit from former employees. California based MedMen is being taken to court for allegedly violating multiple labor laws according to the suit. The suit alleges that two of MedMen’s subsidiaries failed to properly pay wages, accurately record working hours and provide mandatory meals and breaks. The former employees contend that MedMen “intentionally failed” to properly pay their workers. The legal suit could substantially hurt MedMen financially as there could be up to thousands of plaintiffs involved in the entire suit. According to the plaintiffs’ lawyer, the entire process could take months if not years before it is settled. When reached, MedMen offered little to say except that they do not comment on current ongoing legal matters.
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December 6, 2018
Latest NJ Cannabis Bill Advances, prioritizes Jersey City, Newark Businesses
New Jersey’s path to cannabis legalization appears to be slowly plodding along as 2018 slowly comes to an end. A final bill has been set for a vote that focuses on social justice issues, and the vote could also positively impact four of the state’s largest cities including Jersey City and Newark. Last month, the state’s Senate and Assembly voted in favor of passing the Cannabis Regulatory and Expungement Aid Modernization Act. The comprehensive bill would allow adults at least 21 years old to purchase and use cannabis on a recreational level. Also, a 12 percent tax would be imposed on all commercial cannabis sold in the state. Under the bill, Newark, Jersey City, Paterson and Elizabeth would all qualify as impact zones. Among some of the other benefits of the bill include the creation of an Office of Minority, Disabled Veterans, and Women Cannabis Business Development which will emphasize on improving and promoting social and economic disparities. Consumption lounges and home deliveries of cannabis would also become legal under the new proposed bill.
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December 5, 2018
How Will Acting Attorney General Influence Marijuana Legalization?
When former Attorney General Jeff Sessions resigned, the cannabis industry was elated and assumed the worst was over. However, the elation was short lived as many in the industry are now curious to see what the new Attorney General Matthew Whitaker will do. Thus far, the new AG has been pretty tight lipped on where he stands on the issue. His background in the cannabis industry is limited, but he did say that legalized medical cannabinoids would positively benefit families. On the other hand, AG Whitaker was also quoted as saying that he was concerned about the Department of Justice’s handling of the current marijuana situation. Many see AG Whitaker’s views on cannabis contradict that of Trump’s position who publicly stated that he would support marijuana legalization to a certain degree.
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December 5, 2018
Marlboro Parent Company May be Entering Marijuana Market
According to Reuters, Altria is in talks with the Canadian cannabis firm Cronos Group for possible investment opportunities. Altria is the parent company of Marlboro and Virginia Slims. Although there are signs that discussions have started, the company has stated that there is no deal in place for a potential collaboration. Thus far, Altria has kept quiet regarding its interests in Cronos. Regardless of the vagueness, Cronos’ stock rose by 11% by day’s end. It’s no secret on why Altria is interested in expanding into the Canadian cannabis market. With the cigarette market on the steady decline over the past several years, Altria’s shares have dropped 20%. U.S. adults are smoking less which seems to be the ongoing trend. With a $52.5 billion demand for cannabis in the U.S., Altria is banking on benefiting from the industry’s economic boom. Altria isn’t the only non-cannabis group to be highly interested in the cannabis space. Other large corporations have publicly announced their interests in the cannabis industry as well.
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December 5, 2018
New York Legalization Advocates Suggest Using Pot Tax Revenue to Fix Subway
With mounting pressure from New York City’s residents to repair the city’s subway system, the MTA finds itself in a suffocating quagmire where there seems to be no adequate solutions in the immediate future. However, New York’s cannabis legalization advocates may have a possible solution to the MTA financial woes. Realizing that governments in weed-legal states across the country have used taxes from cannabis to fund many public projects, New York cannabis advocates are proposing the same idea. New York’s democratic leaders are considering the idea of using pot tax revenue to support and fund to improve the ailing subway system. A task force was recently created to look into cannabis legalization as a method of raising money to fund repairs to the subway. Although a small sample size, they have a new report from an NYU transportation expert that supports the cannabis legalization proposal. It is estimated that it will cost NY at least $40 billion to fix the MTA system. However, tax revenue from cannabis would only generate up to $670 million which obviously falls well short of the total cost to repair the MTA. Using cannabis tax revenue would be part of a broader plan to generate funds. Whatever the case, it would be in the best interest of all parties involved to consider money from weed as an option.
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December 3, 2018
Bill Seeks to Release Prisoners with Marijuana Convictions
Convicted marijuana prisoners in Michigan will be happy to learn that a group of Democratic lawmakers have introduced a bill that could release them. The bill will focus on releasing prisoners who have been convicted of specific types of cannabis infractions. House Bill 6508 would assist in facilitating a release process for prisoners who have been convicted of cannabis use, possession or distribution. However, the prisoners must meet certain conditions to qualify. This particular bill isn’t only limited to releasing prisoners on the specific conditions mentioned above. The bill also aims to tackle other types of marijuana convictions as well. Michigan state representatives have introduced 4 bills in total regarding cannabis.
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November 26, 2018
NJ Marijuana Legalization Clears First Hurdle After Legal Weed Vote
A joint panel of lawmakers from the NJ Senate and Assembly agreed on a bill that addressed the issues of regulation, taxation and legalization of cannabis. The approval marks another step for New Jersey to becoming the next state to legalize recreational cannabis use. Furthermore, lawmakers have also decided to expand the current state’s medical marijuana program even further, and to completely revise the regulations for expunging cannabis-related crimes. Even with the approval, many lawmakers are still reluctant to ending the state’s prohibition on cannabis. More importantly, Gov. Phil Murphy who supports legalization has yet to endorse any type of cannabis bill put forth by the state’s officials. Many are waiting to see what Gov. Murphy will do and how he will handle the situation going forward. Mid-December will be the next opportunity for the Senate and the Assembly to cast their votes on the matter.
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November 26, 2018
South Korea Legislature Passes Medical Cannabis Law, First in East Asia
South Korea has legalized medical marijuana making it the first East Asian country to do so. With the South Korean government legalizing medical marijuana, it marks a significant step for a traditionally conservative society. The move to legalize will surely be a game-changer in that region with other countries likely to follow. The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety will be responsible for establishing a strict guideline on what types of drugs infused with marijuana will be allowed into the country. For the bill to officially become law, both the president and the State Council must approve. According to the bill, the import of certain medical cannabis products will begin early 2019; however, a specific time line has not been finalized. Only cannabis medications that have been approved by other countries health agencies will be allowed to be imported into South Korea. Most of the drugs will be aimed at treating patients with rare and debilitating diseases.
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November 24, 2018
Tech Companies and Pot Producers Becoming Fast Friends
With the Canadian cannabis market well on its way to becoming a booming industry, certain segments within the industry will be put to the test to provide new services to keep the market thriving. One major area that will drastically change and improve the cannabis space is technology. The technology to keep plants healthy and to expand and improve harvests will be a key component as the cannabis market grows. Ranging from testing cannabis for potency and chemical composition to tracking intellectual property in the industry, the tech aspect of the industry is making itself a vital segment which people can’t ignore. As the market matures and evolves, cannabis clients are looking for the “right tech” that can make their lives simpler and easier. Many in the space say that having the proper technology in the cannabis industry can possibly make or break a business in the long run.
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November 22, 2018
New Jersey Legalizes Hemp Farming
As New Jersey still awaits for recreational cannabis to become legal, a new bill to legalize the research and cultivation of hemp in New Jersey has been signed by Governor Phil Murphy. With the bill receiving unanimous support, it was a no brainer for the Governor Murphy to sign the bill. The passing of this particular hemp bill will further benefit New Jersey farmers as it provides them with another profitable crop to harvest and sell. Hemp has gained popularity in the wake of the current cannabis rush. It is seen as a valuable commodity that is considered as a cash crop. Even though hemp has been banned since 1970 due to its close proximity to cannabis, many states are in the process of updating and revising their hemp regulations. Identifying the crop as a safe product, 38 states have passed laws allowing farmers to cultivate hemp.
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November 21, 2018
Even Half of Cannabis Non-Consumers Support Legalization
The cannabis industry is thriving in Canada and in several states in the US where cannabis has been legalized. Support for cannabis legalization has been at an all time high. The industry is even getting support from people who are not cannabis consumers. According to Civilized culture poll, 50% of people who do not engage in any cannabis activity support cannabis legalization. The poll, which consisted of 1600 American and Canadian adults combined, delved into the attitudes and viewpoints of marijuana consumers and non-consumers toward cannabis culture and legal reform. The main takeaway from the poll is that one doesn’t necessarily have to engage in cannabis use to support legalization for the plant. Those who support legalization point to the economic benefits of legal cannabis.
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November 21, 2018
Canadian Cannabis Investors Still at Risk for Lifetime US Entry Ban
Even with official credentials, Canadian investors may still face lifetime US entry ban. That was the case for a Canadian investor who recently was given the ban as he was attempting to travel straight from Vancouver to Vegas to attend the Marijuana Business Conference & Expo, one of the biggest annual cannabis events. The investor was approached by a US border guard at Vancouver’s airport and was told that he violated the Immigration and Nationality Act related to controlled-substance trafficking. Even though Canada recently legalized cannabis use and sales, the US still considers cannabis as a federally illegal substance thus prompting the ban on the Canadian investor. The US Customs and Border Protection announced a month before Canada fully legalized cannabis that most Canadian’s travelling into the US would “generally be admissible” but would face heavy scrutiny by border agents. In order to avoid the lifetime entry ban, travelers must apply for a temporary waiver permit; however, the application process is time consuming and involves a lot of paper work.
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November 19, 2018
Cannabis is America’s Next Wellness Obsession
With the cannabis industry expected to rake in about 75 billion dollars by 2030, experts are predicting that instead of the younger and male clientele, the growth for the cannabis market in the future will be focused on the older and more female crowd. Unlike the early days of the cannabis industry, the young and the reckless crowd isn’t the main focus. The market now is trending towards the 45-year-old fitness and yoga instructor and her white collar husband. It’s no longer about the flavors or the “rush”. Cannabis seekers today are more interested in how the products will help them physically and mentally encompassing the entire wellness of the body. The sophistication of cannabis products aimed at improving the mind and body has evolved extensively that it has disrupted the market. Like a glass of wine or fancy dessert, cannabis products now are seen as “special treats” offered in social or professional settings. The new market has diversified enough that there is something for everyone especially for those who do not fall into the Cheech and Chong category of smokers.
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November 18, 2018
With Pritzker and Madigan on Board, Dems Push Again For Pot Legalization
Chicago Democrats are planning to push the state government to fully legalize cannabis use in Illinois. Last year, a cannabis bill to legalize recreational use was introduced by Illinois State Senator Heather Steans and state Rep. Kelly Cassidy, but their efforts were turned away by both houses of Legislature. The results of the midterm elections have changed the Illinois political landscape as Chicago Democrats are now in a better position to dictate cannabis issues. Along with newly elected pro-pot Democrat J.B. Pritzker and other supporting fellow Democrats, they now have control of both houses of the General Assembly. To make matters more ironclad, Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan is showing his support for Pritzker’s proposal to legalize cannabis for adult use in the state. It is expected that the new legislation will be introduced by lawmakers during the first legislative session of the new year in January.
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November 16, 2018
The IRS is Reportedly Overwhelmed by Cash Payments from Marijuana Businesses
As funny as it may sound, the money collecting machine the IRS is drowning in cash. Legal cannabis businesses are paying their taxes in cash and in large amounts. With federal cannabis laws preventing US banks from providing any financial services to cannabis businesses, the IRS has been inundated with cash which has become a problem. The cannabis industry is the only industry that pays federal taxes in cash due to the lack of options. Accepting and handling large amounts of cash from cannabis businesses is a problem that has created other issues for the IRS. According to the IRS, they expend an extra $1.7 million to get help in counting all the cash deposited from the cannabis tax payments. An outside party has been hired by the IRS to help, assist, and process the large cash payments which has raised some eyebrows within the cannabis industry. Ironically, unless the US government, which the IRS operates for, changes federal cannabis banking laws, the IRS will continue to face this “money problem”.
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November 16, 2018
Marijuana Franchisers Hope to Make Cannabis Shops as Common as Fast Food
Based on the direction the cannabis industry is heading, it is fair to say that the industry will have a mind boggling impact on the US economy given enough time. Many people are expecting the industry to reach as high as billions of dollars. With that in mind, the cannabis industry is trending towards a franchising model following the footsteps of the US food industry. In particular, some retail dispensary brands may become the McDonalds’s or the 7-11s of the cannabis industry given its current pace. Now that more states are legalizing cannabis or considering legalization, the idea of franchising dispensary brands is not a farfetched concept. Experts in the cannabis industry say that like any industry, the industry will evolve and find creative ways to service clients. Franchising is a natural process that will drive any growing market, and most consumers will be accepting of that idea so as long as they get what they want.
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November 15, 2018
Canadian Officials Report No Spike in Impaired Driving After Cannabis Legalization
When Canada officially legalized cannabis, many Canadian safety groups were worried that the country would see a spike in cannabis-impaired driving. Considering that Canada has a terrible track record with drunk-driving, it comes as no surprise that many groups voiced their concerns. However, early data collected by CBC have indicated that there has been no increase in cannabis-impaired driving much to everyone’s surprise and relief. Although it may be too early to predict what will actually happen, the results so far have been very encouraging. Police authorities have instead reported that most cannabis stoppages were related to improper storage or passenger consumption. It may take some more time before a more accurate assessment can be determined.
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November 15, 2018
Pot Banking Takes Off in US as Women Forge Path Around Ban
With federal prohibition on marijuana still holding the cannabis industry’s relationship with US banks on lock down, a small number of local credit unions led by women have taken steps to alter the landscape in the cannabis banking space. As the cannabis industry roars towards unprecedented cannabis sales, most if not all US banks have kept their distance from developing a financial relationship with any cannabis businesses. Thus far, it has been an all cash industry that is starving for some help on any level. Several credit unions; however, are disrupting the industry by boldly opening up accounts for clients who run cannabis businesses. Since major banks are not willing to touch the cannabis industry, credits unions led by women have taken up the mantle to forge ahead. Women own the credit union landscape as they operate and own more than half of the nation’s institutions and account for about 70% of other employment positions within credit unions. Many have made a name for themselves and are planning ahead by positioning their respective institutions in prime banking situations especially when federal legalization occurs.
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November 14, 2018
Technology Has Changed the Way We Get High, Forever
With the ever evolving cannabis industry constantly looking for ways to satisfy consumers, the industry is now looking towards technology to fulfill consumers’ cannabis needs. 3-D printers may be the wave of the future for the cannabis industry. Pre-loaded with various cannabinoids in liquid form, the device offers a multitude of concentrates including CBD for healing, CBN for sleepiness, THC for the giddy and therapeutic oils called terpenes. The best part about this new technology is that the consumers hardly have to do anything. Using a kiosk screen or 3D-printing mobile app, the consumers get to pick and choose the specific concentrates they desire. Depending on how they want to feel, the device analyzes its database of information from other users to concoct a formula by mixing ingredients to get the consumers what they need. The only “work” that the consumers have to do is to choose their mode of delivery. Technological creations such as this will be common place soon in the cannabis industry as we are entering what some people are calling the golden age of weed tech.
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November 14, 2018
Where Will Marijuana Be Legal Next? Asian countries Race Towards Cannabis Legalization
Asia is slowing making its move into the world of cannabis. Observing what is happening in North America, several Asian countries are mimicking a similar path to legalization. The cannabis legalization movement in various North American and other countries have picked up steam galvanizing Asian countries to follow suit the best way they can. Whether for medicinal or recreational, all fingers point towards a gradual movement towards some type of cannabis legalization in Asia. Thailand is leading the charge as their National Legislative Assembly has proposed an amendment that would reclassify cannabis as medicinally legal allowing it to be possessed and distributed. In Malaysia, the death penalty is sentenced to those who traffic cannabis; however, cannabis supporters are slowly noticing serious cannabis reforms being initiated by the government. Other Asian countries like Sri Lanka announced that farms would be allowed to cultivate cannabis for medicinal export. South Korea, Japan and China have also taken steps to legalize cannabis use mainly medicinally to keep up with the times.
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November 12, 2018
The United Kingdom Will Soon Have First Cannabis-Infused Restaurant
Having already legalized medical cannabis treatment recently, the United Kingdom is continuing to test the boundaries of cannabis laws and regulations. Although THC is still illegal, hemp CBD products are legal in the UK. This has created a small window of opportunity for businesses to take advantage of consumer demands for legal hemp and CBD products. Interest for cannabis related products especially CBD has soared and people are demanding more of it. The Canna Kitchen will become the first restaurant to roll out a menu filled with cannabis-infused cuisine in the UK. Located on the south coast of England, The Canna Kitchen will offer vegetarian and vegan dining with CBD infusions. Since CBD derived from hemp is legal in the UK, it’s practically open game for the establishment. Taking that into consideration, the restaurant has taken the liberty of not only offering dishes infused with CBD but also other rare cannabinoids such as CBG and CBN. Just like CBD, the other two other cannabinoids are non-psychoactive. By providing such items at the restaurant, The Canna Kitchen hopes to spark and change the society’s perception of cannabis and to encourage people to see the benefits that the plant has to offer.
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November 12, 2018
Cannabis Edibles, Drinks Will Mark ‘2nd Wave’ of Legalization
Soon the Canadian cannabis market will brace itself for another huge challenge that will ultimately push the industry into a frenzy. The Canadian government is expected to legalize cannabis and cannabis concentrates on or before Oct 17, 2019. Specifically, those products include edibles, drinks and vaping products. Even though cannabis became legal on Oct, 17 of this year, only dried and fresh cannabis, oil, plants and seeds are allowed to be legally sold. Currently, the black market is profiting from selling these products without any interference from the government. However, by legalizing these products, government officials are hoping to drive out the black market. With cannabis sales rocketing and many businesses having trouble keeping up with demands, edibles and infused beverages may come with even higher demands. Many companies are slowly preparing themselves so that that they are in a favorable position when edibles and other infused products eventually become legal next year.
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November 12, 2018
Blue Moon’s Founding Brewer Pops Top on Cannabis-Infused Beer
Keith Villa the founder of Blue Moon Belgian Wheat will launch his first creation with new venture CERIA Brewing Co., and it will be quite different than Blue Moon. The new beer will include zero alcohol and will have about 5 milligrams of THC. The beer will have a richer, fuller orange taste and some bitterness due to the cannabinoids according to Villa. The drink itself is called Grainwave Belgian-Style Ale and will be available in Colorado in mid-December. Depending on how sales go in Colorado, Villa hopes to expand sales into California and Nevada as well. With federal law prohibiting brewers from using cannabis in beer specifically THC, many use hemp or other non-psychoactive cannabinoids like CBD which also gives “beer” a similar taste to marijuana. In the case with CERIA’s beverage, since it doesn’t contain any alcohol, it can’t be considered beer thus circumventing any federal restrictions. In the near future, CERIA plans to also offer an American Light Lager infused with 2.5 milligrams of THC and an India Pale Ale with 10 milligrams.
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November 9, 2018
Mitch McConnell Guarantees Industrial Hemp Legalization
Industrial hemp is on its way to becoming a legalized product in the US very soon. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is almost certain that the 2018 Farm Bill which includes his industrial hemp legalization provision will pass by year’s end pending a compromise between the Senate and House. Once legalized, McConnell anticipates industrial hemp to be “lightly regulated” by the US Dept. of Agriculture. Industrial hemp has gained much support recently from other politicians most notably the current House Speaker Paul Ryan who has stated his support for hemp. According to Senator McConnell, there is immense potential in the crop, and it is evident by the amount of interest expressed by major international investors. Executives of major companies have been patiently waiting and are expected to invest heavily once the crop officially becomes legal in the US.
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November 9, 2018
How Will the New Attorney General Impact the Cannabis Industry?
With Jeff Sessions resigning from his position as US Attorney General, the cannabis industry can breathe a sigh of relief. A staunch opponent of legal cannabis, Sessions was at the forefront of preventing any kind of federal legal push to free up the cannabis market. Now that he has resigned, the cannabis industry is now curious to see how the new Attorney General Matthew Whitaker will respond. Many people are wondering what kind of impact he will have on the industry. There is very little information and background on Whitaker’s stance on cannabis. However, he did express some support for the legalization of cannabinoids during a recent primary debate that he participated in. He did also express his disagreement to Obama’s loose regulations on cannabis in particular the Cole Memorandum. Many people anticipate that AG Whitaker will pose a minimal threat to the cannabis industry but that remains to be seen.
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November 8, 2018
L.A.’s Licensing Logjam & Mounting Lawsuits for MJ Businesses
With any beginning and a newly burgeoning market, there are bound to be many hiccups and problems that will be encountered by those involved. The cannabis industry is no different and in California, many business owners are feeling the hardships and challenges that have presented themselves in the industry. As the cannabis industry expands and evolves in California, cannabis business owners are facing some difficult challenges such as obtaining business permits and facing trademark and proprietary business information lawsuits. Thus far the city has offered licenses to 169 retailers; however, none for growers, distributors, edible makers, testing labs or other types of plant-touching establishments. For their second round of licensing, the L.A. Dept of Cannabis Regulation received close to 600 applications for permits. The licensing quagmire is not the only problem that the city is having to deal with. Courts and lawmakers are just as involved in the cannabis industry as business owners and not for the better. The industry is beset with lawsuits with no end in sight. Unfortunately, the market seems to be headed towards a highly regulated market that will be determined by the courts and lawmakers.
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November 7, 2018
Key Cannabis Legalization Wins Could Bring in Upwards of $2 billion in New Sales
Americans have spoken and voted at the midterm elections as the cannabis industry scored monumental victories in several key states that could potentially open up the cannabis market even more. Key victories in Michigan, Missouri and Utah could generate an extra $2 billion in medical and recreational sales across the nation. In addition to these victories, the Democrats now control the US House of Representatives which should improve the chances of future federal marijuana reforms being passed. This is great news for all the current and potential cannabis businesses in the market. However, not everything was on the “high” as the Republicans still managed to retain control of the Senate. The Senate could pose a certain amount of threat and hindrance to the cannabis industry down the road, but it should still be easier than before with Democrats at least controlling the House of Representatives.
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November 7, 2018
Midterm Elections: Big Win for Cannabis in Michigan, but How Did the Other States Perform?
Now that the midterm elections have ended, what does the cannabis landscape look like now in the US? Voters across the nation and in some very important states had the opportunity to vote on a slew of cannabis measures that can ultimately alter the course of the growing cannabis industry in America. In particular, Michigan, North Dakota, Missouri, Utah, and Ohio were some of the more important states that the cannabis industry was anxiously waiting results for. Michigan, Missouri and Utah had positive results as voters in these states won some type of cannabis legalization for their states respectively while North Dakota and Ohio voters weren’t as fortunate. Although not perfect, there are now 3 more states that have turned the corner and have joined the ever expanding support for cannabis legalization whether medicinally or recreationally.
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November 5, 2018
American Support For Marijuana Hits a New High
A recent Gallop poll on how Americans feel about marijuana showed that more people support legalization in the US. even more. According to the poll, 56% of American adults want to see the government legalize cannabis use. There has been a steady rise in support since the mid-2000s especially over the course of the last two years. The two main factors that have contributed to the steady rise in support for cannabis are that more Republicans and older Americans are showing support for legalization. As the nationwide support for cannabis legalization increases, so does the prospects of marijuana stocks. This by no means guarantees an explosion in the US market, but it does point to a positive outlook for some. However, those in the industry still know that it would be a stretch to think that it will happen any time soon considering some of the hurdles the cannabis market must overcome.
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November 2, 2018
Florida Democrats Want to Create State Bank to Help Medical Marijuana Companies
Nikki Fried, who is running for Florida agriculture commissioner in the upcoming election, is pushing to create a state-run bank in the state of Florida to operate and service the marijuana industry. The impetus for this push comes after two of Nikki’s Fried bank accounts were shut down this year due to her support of medical marijuana. Fried and her fellow Florida Democrats want to prevent further account closures for cannabis business by creating a state-operated bank similar to the one in North Dakota. As ambitious as this project sounds, some of her opponents believe that the overall cannabis banking problem should be dealt on a federal level and not state.
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November 2, 2018
MedMen Files Trademark Application For the Word ‘Cannabis’
MedMen has filed a trademark application for the word ‘cannabis’. MedMen are hoping to trademark the word ‘cannabis’ when it’s applied to T-shirts including short-sleeved or long-sleeved t-shirts. The move has created somewhat of a commotion on social media and other cannabis media outlets. The primary buzz hinges on whether or not MedMen will be successful in its attempt to trademark the word. Others are concerned that MedMen’s actions may lead to corporate monopolies and takeovers in the industry. Despite MedMen’s attempt, many feel that it will be difficult for them get an approval. Although possible, the word ‘cannabis’ is problematic. Since the word ‘cannabis’ is too prevalent in the market and doesn’t provide any uniqueness, MedMen will be facing an uphill battle according to some lawyers. Others see this move as no more than a publicity stunt to gain more attention in the market. Whatever the scenario, the decision won’t be clear until late 2019.
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November 1, 2018
Britain Welcomes the Global Cannabis Revolution
Starting Nov. 1, the British government will allow special doctors to prescribe medicinal cannabis to their patients. Cannabis has been added to the pharmacopoeia of medicines by the British government. Prior to this decision, the government labeled cannabis as a Class A substance having no medicinal or therapeutic benefits. The government’s decision to allow marijuana prescriptions will help those parents whose children suffer from severe epilepsy along with other ailments. When prescribing cannabis, doctors and physicians must consider each decision on a case-by-case basis. Britain’s decision comes in the wake of a global cannabis revolution as Canada has fully legalized cannabis. Other nations such as Mexico and Thailand are also in the process of possibly making marijuana legal. In Europe, Germany legalized cannabis-derived medicines in 2017.
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November 1, 2018
Mexico Just Took a Big Step Toward Marijuana Legalization
In a surprising and welcoming announcement, Mexico’s Supreme Court declared that the nation’s current marijuana prohibition law is unconstitutional. This puts Mexico on the cusp of possibly making marijuana legal. This would put added pressure on the U.S. as Canada recently went fully legal as well. According to Mexico’s Supreme Court, adults should have the fundamental rights to decide on their recreational activities unobstructed by the state. However, the opinion does not consider or apply to all substances even with the court’s new position on marijuana. The ruling does not immediately legalize recreational use, for individual’s wanting to use and grow marijuana must press his or her case in the judicial system.
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October 31, 2018
Thailand is Poised to Become the First Asian Country to Legalize Medical Marijuana
Thailand’s National Legislative Assembly is on the verge of making Thailand the first Asian country to legalize medical marijuana. The pending bill which is anticipated to pass soon will be handled and controlled by Thailand’s Prime Minister and other government supporters of the bill. Even if the bill is somehow defeated, under Thailand’s constitution, the prime minister has the authority to overrule the decision and enact the legislation unilaterally. Currently, many Thai citizens already use cannabis as a medical option to treat some types of cancer. Supporters say that government officials are slowing seeing the medicinal benefits of marijuana. In addition, they also recognize the economic opportunities marijuana can provide for the country itself. Marijuana has a deep history in Thailand, for the plant has always been a part of Thailand’s culture. The practice of growing and smoking marijuana by farmers go back hundreds of years.
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October 31, 2018
Legal Cannabis in Canada Might Be Dry For a Year
While many marijuana supporters have welcomed and celebrated the legalization of cannabis in Canada this year, cannabis businesses are facing the grim reality of a massive shortage of supplies to meet the demands of sales. It has become a dire situation as many stores and provinces are completely exhausted of supplies and products. To compound the matter, experts predict that it may take a year or longer before supplies can support the demands of the market. On Oct. 17, marijuana officially became legal in Canada. Dispensaries and other online shops had a booming start to kick off the new beginning. However, several weeks later, Canada’s cannabis market has already reached a critical stage of cannabis shortage as it is failing to keep up with demands. Subsequently, many business are temporarily closing down or having to scale back days and hours of operation. There are several reasons for the shortage including high demand, lack of cannabis resources and the lack of expertise among the country’s licensed growers. Whatever the case, Canada must withstand the growing pains that comes with the industry if it wants to succeed.
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October 29, 2018
Another Big Election Year for Marijuana as Candidates Recognize Voters Want Legal Cannabis
With the November midterm elections nearing, many Americans will be voting on many things including numerous cannabis related measures. Some of the measures voters will be voting on include laws regarding commercial cultivation in certain zones and how to spend taxes gained from cannabis. More importantly, some states will be voting on both adult-use and medical cannabis legalization. With this in mind, many of candidates are aware that gaining the votes from the younger population is a key component of their campaign. That is why the issue of cannabis reform will be a critical issue for most candidates. Knowing the importance of their election, candidates nationwide are currently more apt to endorse cannabis on their campaign trail. The issue of cannabis has gained more support especially with Canada going legal in mid Oct. Cannabis will likely bring on more voter turnout this year which has the potential to make or break a candidates chances of being elected or reelected.
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October 29, 2018
WSDA Tests Show Frequent Illegal Pesticide Use on Cannabis
According to a new report from a group of medical cannabis advocates, many cannabis and pot related products tested showed evidence of pesticides. The Washington State Dept. of Agriculture found that over 40 percent of the cannabis tested showed illegal amounts of pesticide. The test and research was conducted over a 16-month period where the WSDA found that 43 percent of samples tested contained illegal and banned pesticide ingredients. The report says that many Washington consumers purchase and use regulated recreational cannabis during any one day, and that it is guaranteed that they are also consuming the illegal amounts of pesticides. Unfortunately, unlike many west coast states that produce and sell cannabis, Washington does not test for illegal pesticides in its recreational cannabis that are being sold. Aside from random testing and sporadic testing based on complaints, hardly any investigation is practiced for pesticides.
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October 26, 2018
With Pot Legalization, Job Openings Surge in Canada’s Cannabis Industry
On Oct. 17, Canada became just the second country in the world to fully legalize cannabis use and sale. With legalization, the job market in the cannabis space has already shown a positive and competitive trend. Even though it’s in the beginning stages, many cannabis and cannabis related industries have recruited top talent from other sectors of the economy. The opportunity to work for companies with sky-high valuations and the chance to develop and shape a new industry are some to the reasons why Canada could become a world leader in job migration. The popularity of working in the cannabis space has transformed many small Canadian cities into major opportunity areas for people seeking to work in the space. From production and cultivation to marketing and sales, the Canadian cannabis market offers a bountiful of ways for people to enter the market if interested.
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October 25, 2018
NFL Great Co-Founds New Cannabis Investment Firm with Social Justice at Its Core
Former New York Giant running back Tiki Barber has found a new offensive play that can shake up the cannabis industry with social justice at its core. Everyone in the cannabis industry knows and understands the lucrative potential the burgeoning cannabis market can bring especially when the market hasn’t even reached its full capacity. While others strive for financial and monetary benefits within the cannabis market, Tiki Barber has another mission. Tiki is the co-founder of the new equity firm Grove Group Management that strictly works in the cannabis market. Aside from financial profits, Tiki and GGM are looking to create a brand that focuses more on promoting diversity in the cannabis market and rectifying many of the social injustices that many minorities have endured in the industry. Tiki is hoping that GGM will represent more than “just another cannabis firm in the industry”. Through GGM and its practices, Tiki and his partners plan to work with state and local officials to assist those within the cannabis market especially minorities to provide job opportunities, to help support the overturning of past minor marijuana convictions and to educate the public on cannabis.
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October 25, 2018
ASTM International Sign MOU on Cannabis Standards
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has been signed between ASTM, a global standards organization, and the International Cannabis and Cannabinoid Institute (ICCI). The two entities are planning to work together on standards for the cannabis industry. The ICCI is the first European partner for ASTM International’s cannabis committee. The Czech Republic based company ICCI is hoping to gain recognition of its technical contributions while the two groups coordinate standards development activities for the global cannabis and hemp industry. ASTM International has a long list of similar agreements with other groups in the hopes of developing standards within the cannabis and hemp industry. Under the specific agreement with ICCI, the two organizations will prioritize cannabis standards first followed by standards associated with cannabis cosmetics and then food supplements and extracts. The cannabis committee developed by ASTM International includes businesses, laboratories, associations, governments and others.
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October 23, 2018
South Korean Police Warn Korean Citizens in Canada to Stay Away From Pot or Face Criminal Charges
If Canadian-Koreans or a South Korean citizens living in Canada smoke and try to enter South Korea, they may face criminal charges according to the South Korean government. The Korean police issued a warning to stay away from pot or face stiff consequences. The warning was issued by Yoon Se-jin the head of narcotics crime investigation who also stated that violators could face up to five years in prison if found guilty. He clearly emphasized that violators will be judged by Korean law and standards irrespective of where they live or come from. South Korea has strict drug laws that are enforced without hesitation especially onto Korean citizens living, working and traveling abroad.
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October 22, 2018
How Women are Making Their Mark in the Legal Weed Industry
Whether in the US or other parts of the world that allow the use or sale of cannabis, women are embracing and taking control of the opportunities that the cannabis industry has presented itself. From CBD cosmetics to CBD infused-cuisine, women are finding a niche market and industry that they feel they can contribute and dominate. Women’s role in the ever increasing and rapidly growing CBD industry is just starting to take off. The UK is a burgeoning market which has a relatively young CBD industry, yet women are gradually making progress and increasingly making their presence felt. The US cannabis market which is much more developed than the UK’s has an unprecedented number of women holding CEO or executive positions in the cannabis industry. According to Marijuana Business Daily, women make up 27 percent of all high-level positions. Currently, CBD products are legal in the UK; however, THC is still illegal.
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October 19, 2018
Sephora is Now Carrying Lord Jones CBD Lotion
Sephora the cosmetics and beauty line company announced that they are expanding their CBD-infused cosmetic products. Their latest addition is Lord Jones’ CBD lotion. With a solid reputation, Lord Jones is a leading CBD-infused products manufacturer. Known for their high-quality and consistent product line, consumers now can head to any mall nationwide to purchase their new products at Sephora. Cannabis products are slowly making an impact in the health and beauty industry with cosmetics companies producing creams, lotions, gels and other makeup products infused with CBD. Research has found that CBD provides therapeutic and wellness benefits. When it comes CBD-infused cosmetics products, Lord Jones believes that its CBD Formula Lotion is the best there is in the industry. It’s extremely popular that even celebrities have been raving about Lord Jones’ CBD-infused beauty products.
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October 19, 2018
Following Canada’s Lead, Legal Cannabis Set to Take Off on a Global Scale
As Canada has become just the second country in the world to fully legalize cannabis, the coming year could be one that changes the mindset on cannabis on a global level. The Canadian legal market can set a precedent for other countries to follow by proving that legalized cannabis can be regulated and controlled in a manner that benefits everyone. On a larger scale, the move by Canada can open up bigger markets especially in health sciences and wellness companies which will allow them to handle the plant much like a standard pharma product. What’s more important is that Canada’s move will provide more opportunities for extensive R&D into novel treatments for various diseases and disorders. This will undoubtedly transform Canada’s cannabis market into a multi-billion dollar sector which will surely attract investors from all around the world. With the changing mindset towards cannabis around the world, the pace in which things are evolving has picked up tremendously. It has started in North America and will eventually spill over into Europe making the cannabis industry the next global frontier.
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October 19, 2018
Massachusetts Will Consider Allowing Pot Delivery
Cannabis officials in Massachusetts are aiming to allow home delivery of cannabis across the state in small amounts. As of now, only small, locally owned companies would be permitted this opportunity. According to the Cannabis Control Commission, these small, locally owned businesses called “microbusinesses” would be allowed to deliver marijuana and marijuana-infused products to consumers’ homes but only in limited quantities. The state is primarily focused on these "microbusinesses" to bolster the commission’s efforts to include marginalized individuals in the cannabis space especially for those who have been affected legally. Other existing medical dispensaries and larger cannabis companies will not be permitted to make deliveries according to the commissioner. This is to regulate and control initial delivery operators and to fix any other issues before expanding the medical marijuana program.
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October 18, 2018
Report Shows Alabama Disproportionately Targets Black Cannabis Users
A newly released report out of Alabama points to a disturbing trend which shows that black cannabis users are regularly targeted by law enforcement agents. The Alabama Appleseed Center for Law and Justice and the Southern Poverty Law Center presented the data called “War on Marijuana” which shows blacks in Alabama are being disproportionately targeted for arrest and prosecution including one resident who was arrested for a dime a weed and was sentenced to spend 15 months in jail. The report found that even though whites and blacks use cannabis at the same rate, black people are four times as likely to be arrested for marijuana possession. Many activists say that being in the deep south and in the Bible Belt doesn’t help the situation especially when there is obvious racism still thriving. Many believe that Alabama’s so called war on drugs is a huge failure.
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October 17, 2018
These Two States are Poised to be the Next Big Marijuana Markets
Even though the cannabis industry has made tremendous progress legally and in the eyes of the public, federal prohibition is still the ultimate problem which has thus far kept the cannabis industry locked in a state by state business. With each state passing its own cannabis regulations, cannabis businesses are forced to devise plans to accommodate each new state which hinders their goal of obtaining economies of scales. With such huge discrepancies between states, it’s difficult to create a balanced synergistic cannabis market. As much of the attention has been focused on the cannabis saturated west coast, the east coast is primed for growth and expansion especially in companies with operations in more limited-licensed states like New Jersey and Illinois. Both these states have similar paths to developing a legal and regulated cannabis market. In the next couple of years, these two states will likely be at the forefront of the cannabis expansion on the east coast because of their clear paths to expanding their medical program and/or adopting full legalization respectively.
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October 17, 2018
Legalizing Recreational Marijuana Canada Begins a National Experiment
It has finally happened as Canada has officially become the second nation in the world to fully legalize cannabis use. Thus, beginning a national experiment that will ultimately drive social, cultural and economic changes. It is the nation’s biggest public policy challenge in decades. Canadians celebrated all across the nation as cannabis retail shops opened for business from province to province. Now, we will have to see what the ultimate outcome of such a drastic policy move by the government will be. With so many unknowns, some groups are worried that this “uncontrolled experiment” will not benefit the country in any way. Many groups called on the government to promote changes to the law if it leads to increased problems. Each province and territory has been given the authority to set their own rules and regulations which poses more challenges especially those who work in law enforcement. Whatever the situation and challenges, the world will be closely observing how this experiment will unfold.
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October 17, 2018
Rhode Island Approves Medical Marijuana as Autism Treatment
At the request of parents, the Rhode Island Department of Health approved the prescription of medical cannabis to treat patients with autism. Pending judicial review, the decision is effective immediately. In April, parents with autistic children petitioned the DOH to permit them to use CBD as a form of autistic treatment considering it is a debilitating medical condition. Parents with the support of testifying doctors have stated that medical cannabis therapy could help to “manage the behavioral manifestations” of autism. Doctors who wish to recommend CBD treatment to their patients must adhere to strict guidelines posted by the DOH. Physicians are instructed to consider “pharmaceutic grade forms of pure CBD” before suggesting medical cannabis. In addition, doctors and physicians must document specific reasons for recommending CBD treatment and reasons for not using other medical alternatives.
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October 15, 2018
University of Connecticut Set to Offer Cannabis Horticulture Course
With the cannabis space expanding at an exponential rate, many areas of society are taking advantage of the benefits of the industry including academia. More and more universities are starting to offer classes that deal with cannabis. Whether it be off the plant or directly on the plant, schools are offering students the opportunity to learn about cannabis as part of their university training. The University of Connecticut will offer a cannabis cultivation course starting the spring of 2019 semester. The course will be a basic introductory level class. The will be no prerequisites which should make the course easily available to those who are interested. The course will primarily focus on cultivation and will rely on many industry experts to talk about cannabis in the legal market.
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October 12, 2018
A Surprising Number of First-Time Cannabis Consumers said They’d Try Marijuana in Place of Beer
A report released by the consulting firm A.T. Kearney showed that a high number of potential first-time cannabis users would use the drug instead of drinking beer. This news has the beverage industry a little on edge for it may potentially affect their bottom line. The survey showed that 27 percent of the 2000 people reached said they would try the plant in place of beer. Furthermore, 54 percent of the respondents said that they have tried some type of cannabis product by means of smoking, vaping, or eating.
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October 12, 2018
The US will Not Ban Canadians Working in the Marijuana Industry From Entering the Country
Canadians who work in the cannabis space can rest easy with the news that they will not be banned from entering the Unites States for whatever the occasion. The US government has backed-off its stance of making it difficult for Canadians from entering into the US for anyone working with cannabis. The US Customs and Border Patrol stated that since marijuana is still considered a controlled substance, it may affect possible entry into the country. With Canada becoming the second country in the world to legalize marijuana in June, the US government was concerned with marijuana making its way over the border thus prompting the initial ban.
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October 11, 2018
An All-Women Cannabis Company Just Won a Manufacturing License in California
A California cannabis manufacturer made history when it became the first all women-led company in the industry. The women-led company Yummi Karma LLC creates cannabis products for women by women. Started in 2014, Yummi Karma manufactures tinctures and other beauty lines. Their aim is to prove that the legal cannabis community can produce safe and consistent products and that cannabis businesses can also develop good relationships with those in the neighborhood they operate in. They are also taking their advocacy efforts all the up to the federal level to boost support for the industry.
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October 11, 2018
Trump to Push for Federal Marijuana Reform, GOP Congressmen Says
According to California Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, President Trump will pursue federally legalizing medical marijuana once the midterm races are completed. Although Mr. Trump did not campaign on legalizing the plant, he has been open to the idea of legalizing marijuana for medical purposes. Despite the continuous pushback, the Trump administration has made it clear that it wants to reform the current marijuana laws. Mr. Rohrabacher expects the President Trump to take a closer look at the current situation and start creating a plan that is viable and realistic after the elections.
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October 9, 2018
Is Legal Cannabis Coming to the Midwest?
The cannabis space is spreading like wildfire as the Midwest is now slowly loosening its ironclad barrier of marijuana legalization. Supporters of marijuana legalization are anticipating a geographic breakthrough in November especially after a string of election victories in Northeastern and Western states. According to a professor, the U.S. has reached a “breaking point” where change is inevitable at the federal level due to the rise in support for marijuana legalization. Currently, Michigan and North Dakota are in the process of deciding on whether to legalize adult marijuana use. The two states already have a medical program in place and would become the 10th and 11th states to legalize recreational use if passed. Continuing the trending into the Midwest, Missouri and Utah are considering medical marijuana programs as well. Oklahoma became the 31st state to legally allow a medical program for its residents.
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October 8, 2018
Support for Cannabis Legalization Grows to 62%
According to a recent Pew Research Center survey, more than 60% of Americans now support the idea of making cannabis legal. The figure has doubled since 2000 as groups who have been against the idea of cannabis legalization have become more supportive to the idea over the past several years. Specifically, 62% of Americans favor legalization with the younger generations being the main impetus for the rise in support. The millennials account for the majority of the supporters followed by the Generation Xers and the baby boomers. Compared to the Pew survey conducted in 2017, the 2018 results were only slightly higher. However, the percentage of Americans opposed to legalization changed more significantly, dropping from 37% to 34%.
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October 8, 2018
A New Fingerprint Drug Testing System Can Detect With 99 Percent Accuracy
The U.K. firm Intelligent Fingerprinting has developed a groundbreaking new fingerprint drug testing system. The system can identify with 99% accuracy the presence of cannabis and other drugs in a person’s system. The Reader 1000 has the ability to detect commonly used drugs by analyzing sweat found in fingerprints. The Reader 1000 is efficient to the point where it can deliver results within 10 minutes. Out of all the drugs it can detect with accuracy, cannabis had the highest percentage of detection compared to other drugs. The unit itself is quite user friendly and is portable. In the U.K., the Reader 1000 is already being used in many areas of society.
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October 8, 2018
There’s a Big Win for Medical Marijuana Patients in the Fine Print of New Bill
New Jersey patients who do not qualify for the medical marijuana program may have some hope yet as New Jersey law makers are working hard to correct some of the perceived mistakes in the current medical marijuana law. The head of the Cannabis Regulatory Commission would decide which conditions qualify for cannabis. This new body would be created by the bill to control the medical program and the pending legal adult market. The current list of medical conditions as of March 2018 had only one condition, post-traumatic stress disorder, added to the short list. Since Gov. Phil Murphy took office, he has added several more conditions to expand the list of conditions. Gov. Murphy has also given power to the Health Commissioner to take full control of adding more conditions to the list. This move by Gov. Murphy will speed of the process of expanding the list of conditions.
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October 5, 2018
Canadians Will Be Allowed to Travel With Up to 30 Grams of Cannabis
As Canada becomes only the second country in the world to fully legalize marijuana, many new economic opportunities will come forth that will most certainly bolster its economy. Although The Cannabis Act isn’t perfect, this new bill will allow Canadians to travel with their legal weed from province to province. Under the law, Canadians will be allowed to travel and have possession of up to 30 grams of cannabis. However, the Cannabis Act does not preclude any Canadians from international travel regulations. The Canadian Minister of Transport Marc Garneau warned all Canadian citizens of traveling abroad with the same 30 grams of cannabis. The travelers must abide by the laws of the country of destination. What is legal in Canada may in fact be illegal in most other countries.
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October 4, 2018
Canada Will Change the World Forever With Marijuana Legalization, Here’s How
With Canada preparing to fully legalize marijuana in the coming days, the entire world will be closely observing the effects Canada will have on the international community. Canada is in a position to alter the course of history with its landmark decision and ultimately change the world and how others view Canada. For one thing, America will definitely view Canada in a new light and put more pressure on the U.S. to change its own antiquated policies on cannabis and other drug policies. Another way Canada benefits from legalization is the immense economic opportunities it has opened up. As the only major country to legalize recreational use, Canada will be its sole beneficiary on all financial dealings. These are some of the advantages Canada will experience once they officially go legal.
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October 4, 2018
Hundreds Sound Off on Legalizing Recreational Marijuana in New York
New York State hosted 15 listening sessions across the state where hundreds of people chimed in on the topic of legalizing marijuana in New York. The main objective for these listening sessions is to gather information from all the participants before making a final decision on whether or not to legalize marijuana for recreational use in New York. The Department of Health, which conducted the study, found that more people positively view the idea of legalization than those who are opposed to the idea. Both sides of the spectrum presented their views on why New York should or should not legalize recreational marijuana use. The information gathered from all the listening sessions will be presented to the governor’s regulated marijuana work group for further study.
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October 4, 2018
Cannabis Gummies, Hard Candies to Be Pulled From Washington Shelves
Edible cannabis gummies will no longer be available in the state of Washington after the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board announced that they will effectively ban all hard candies, fruit chews, gummies, and stylized chocolates. The primary reason for the ban is that there were growing concerns that many of the products were too appealing to minors. Washington state law prohibits any products that attract children and specifically points out gummy candies. Other edibles such as peach rings, Life Savers, and other common candies are also prohibited under Washington state law. Many of these products made it through the approval process even though they were not supposed to. One reason for this oversight is that many of the items presented to the approval board didn’t match up with what was actually being sold.
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October 3, 2018
How Cannabis Companies Can Capitalize on Digital Advertising Opportunities
Digital advertising has become an important component the cannabis industry as it connects businesses and consumers in an efficient and time saving manner. It offers a direction connection to people on the internet. However, cannabis business owners are learning firsthand on how difficult it is to get access into the digital sphere. In order to expand your prospective customer base, businesses need digital channels to promote themselves. According to Dorota Umeno of Canna Ventures, there are ways to get around the digital barriers and succeed in the market at the same time.
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October 3, 2018
Yes, You Can Bring Weed to LAX. No, You Can’t Actually Travel With it
Although the policy isn’t new, passengers traveling through Los Angeles International Airport are allowed to possess cannabis; however, there is one catch. Passengers in possession of cannabis may not legally fly with the weed. According to Proposition 64, the LA Airport Police Dept. will allow passengers to travel through LAX as long as it is under 28.5 grams of MJ and 8 grams of concentrated MJ. Passengers are encouraged to do their due diligence and to confirm and check the laws of the other state(s) that they are planning to travel to, for each state’s cannabis laws vary. Another catch is that even though the LAX Airport Police Dept. may allow cannabis possession, that doesn’t mean that the TSA will. Since cannabis is technically federally illegal, all TSA agents must stop and turn individuals with possession of cannabis over to the local authorities.
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October 2, 2018
PepsiCo Just Became the Latest Beverage Company to say It’s Looking at the Fast-Growing Cannabis Market
The cannabis market may soon welcome PepsiCo into the lucrative business sector as it is taking a hard look at the industry with other soft drinks makers doing the same. The CFO of the company stated on CNBC that they will continue to monitor and examine the space critically before any move is to be made by PepsiCo. PepsiCo’s announcement comes as Coca-Cola also said last month that they had intentions of possibly entering into the cannabis market and are closely watching the industry as well. The cannabis market has increasingly attracted attention from the food and beverage industry as these companies see the cannabis market as an opportunity for future growth or conversely, a threat to their brands. Besides the soft drinks giants, alcohol is the other beverage industry looking to profit from cannabis as Corona beer maker Constellation invested $4 billion dollars in the Canadian cannabis company Canopy recently.
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October 1, 2018
First Student-Organized Cannabis Conference Aims to educate the public about Medical Marijuana
Green Wolverine, a student run organization, works to highlight and educate people on the current scientific data surrounding medical marijuana by world-class researchers, scientists and physicians. The first Green Wolverine Science Symposium took place recently at the Ross School of Business. The special guest speakers discussed and debated the professional study of THC and CBD. Green Wolverine President Abigail Kennedy hopes the organization can be an informative outlet to education students and community members about the scientific features of cannabis. She always wants to emphasize that Green Wolverine is non-political and that their sole purpose is to educate which is why their events are heavily focused on research and data.
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October 1, 2018
A Tiny NJ Borough Becomes a Battleground for Big Marijuana and Anti-Weed Forces
With New Jersey in the process of passing a recreational marijuana bill soon, there are some areas that have become intense battle grounds between Big Marijuana and organized anti-weed groups. Gloucester County borough of Clayton is such a place where the two forces are in a heated battle to determine whether a $10 million cannabis cultivation and processing facility should be built on an empty land in an industrial park. The arguments are mainly based on whether the construction of the facility would bring more positive or negative incentives to the neighborhood. Green Thumb Industries, the company involved in the dispute, participated in an emergency town meeting along with other officials from Clayton and a crowd of more than 200 to discuss what one resident called the “hot-button issue” of marijuana. Clayton county is one of several municipalities in NJ to tangle with idea of whether or not to allow cannabis related businesses to open up shop in its area. The results have been mixed as some areas have passed ordinances banning such facilities and others welcoming them.
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September 28, 2018
No, the DEA Did Not Reschedule the CBD Compound
The recent announcement by the FDA to make Epidiolex, the cannabis-based epilepsy drug, a Schedule V controlled substance has created some confusion and misunderstanding. Many people have taken the FDA’s decision to mean that all FDA-approved medication is pure CBD and that all CBD products fall into the same category. Unfortunately, this is not the case as the federal government still considers all other cannabis derived CBD products illegal. Epidiolex is the only CBD medicine at the moment to be considered medicinal by the federal government which makes all others still illegal by federal standards. The confusion stems from when right after the FDA approved Epidiolex for distribution in the US, a spokesperson for the DEA’s public affairs office announced that the agency had 90 days to recategorize CBD to a lower classification when in fact it was only meant for the drug Epidiolex.
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September 28, 2018
New Jersey Marijuana Legalization Face Setbacks Once Again
With New Jersey residents patiently waiting for Gov. Phil Murphy to follow through with his campaign promise to legalize weed in the Garden State, it seems like more bureaucracy is standing in the way of getting his wish accomplished. Many people believed that Gov. Murphy’s promise to legalize weed within his first 100 days in office was ambitious, but the delays that have come when trying to pass the bill may have just gotten even longer. Official believe that nothing will be signed or finalized until closer to the end of the year. Ironically, many supporters of the bill do not mind the delay. They believe that the more the bill’s timeline gets drawn out, so will the overall bill. The longer the bill takes to pass, the possibility to add more beneficial features to the bill increases such as the expungement of records for low-level MJ offenders. The current status of bill is that it has gone up from 71 to 121 pages since the August prediction due to more features being added during the postponement.
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September 24
Epileptic 5-Year-Old May Now Bring Cannabis-Based Medicine to School
In another landmark decision, a 5-year-old epileptic California girl may now bring cannabis-based medicine to school. Brooke Adams will now be able to bring her medication to school without question. The medicine which is vital to her wellbeing prevents the young girl from getting seizures. The current California law prevents bringing any form of marijuana on school grounds no matter the circumstance. Brooke Adam’s school district prevented Brooke from bringing her cannabis-ointment because it contained THC – the main psychoactive component in cannabis. In this particular case, the judge made an exception for the student due to the dire and volatile nature of her seizures.
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September 24, 2018
Canada estimates 1$ Billion in Legal Cannabis Sales in First Three Months
According to Statistics Canada, once the cannabis market officially becomes legal on Oct, 17 to the end of the year, Canada’s weed market can reach as high as $1.02 billion dollars in sales. This figure is not based on an annual estimate and instead it estimates what Canadian cannabis consumers will spend on weed in just the final 10 weeks of the year. This figure only represents legal sales and not the $250 million to $350 million illegal market. Even with legalization, the black market still commands lots of attention, for the illicit market still comprises a major portion of cannabis sales. The current Canadian black market stands at about $1 billion dollars. However, according to StatCan, once fully legal, the illicit market will drop substantially from $1.2 billion dollars to $300 million.
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September 21, 2018
NJ Legalization Bill Reportedly Sets Nation’s Lowest Tax on Legal Marijuana
Although being one of the highest-tax states in the country, NJ is considering a 10 percent tax on legal marijuana sales. If the bill is passed at 10 percent, it would make it the nation’s lowest tax on cannabis. The current bill form is quite lenient in terms of what it allows cannabis consumers can do including consuming what they buy on the premises, which no other state now allows. The bill also focuses on addressing social justice, women and minority issues, and the assisting of veterans. The current draft bill would mandate 25 percent of licenses to be set aside to women and minorities or veterans, and would set no legislative limits on permit ownership. Currently, the bill has not been released to the public and is under further revisions and amendments.
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September 18, 2018
NJ Legal Weed Bill “98 percent’ done. The Final Fight is Over How Much to Tax Marijuana
NJ’s cannabis industry’s path to full legalization is just one step away from becoming a reality. A bill to create a fully legal cannabis market place is basically completed with tax issues being the last hurdle. With ’98 percent’ of the bill finished, now lawmakers have to decide on how much to tax to impose on cannabis. According to the head of the New Jersey CannaBusiness Association Scott Rudder, officials have to decide on whether to tax retail marijuana sales 25 percent immediately or to start with a lower tax system which then increases over time to the level. If completed, NJ will be the 9th state to allow adult usage for recreational purposes.
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September 18, 2018
South Africa’s Highest Court Legalizes Cannabis Use
In a landmark decision, South Africa’s Constitutional Court legalized the growing of marijuana for consumption. The unanimous decision was met with jubilance with pro-marijuana activists taking to the streets cheering and chanting. The law will allow the possession of cannabis for private use for his or her personal consumption Although the judgement is a victory for the people, the deputy judge who passed the landmark decision warned that cannabis will still be illegal to sell and supply publicly. The ruling also allows for the government to drop all charges against individuals arrested for possession of the drug. Many people were hoping for full legalization but are happy with the progress they have taken.
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September 17, 2018
Coke Eyes Cannabis-Infused Drink Market
Don’t look now but the soft drink giant Coca-Cola is considering entering the growing cannabis market. The world’s largest soft drink company is looking into possibly expanding its drinks market into the cannabis world. If indeed they make a move into the industry, it will definitely take them into a whole new realm away from sugary sodas. It was announced on BNN Bloomberg that Coca-Cola was in talks with Canada’s Aurora Cannabis Inc. to develop CBD infused drinks. The goal is to provide CBD drinks to people to help ease inflammation, pain and cramping to people who suffer from these ailments. Coke would be join a rush by other major corporations that want to test the cannabis industry in the hopes of financially profiting from the current industry boom.
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September 14, 2018
New Jersey Medical Marijuana Patients will Now Be Able to Buy Vapes
The NJ Department of Health is allowing medical marijuana patients to purchase cannabis vape products after a change in rules. Before the revision, patients were prohibited from purchasing any vape pens, cartridges, and similar cannabis products from state-licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. Along with selling cannabis flower, oral lozenges, and topical preparations, NJ medical dispensaries can now add vape products to their menus. NJ is currently going through an expansion of its medical cannabis program along with the eventual legalization of adult use some time in the near future. The expansion calls for more medical conditions, more dispensaries and more products to service the growing NJ medical cannabis market. According to the DOH, the program should be completed and passed very soon.
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September 14, 2018
Mass. Credit Union will Serve Recreational Marijuana Companies
GFA Federal Credit Union, a Massachusetts based company, will be the first financial institute in the state to service recreational marijuana companies. This will allow cannabis consumers to pay with their credit cards, and it will also alleviate some of the banking barriers involved in the cannabis market. Most importantly, this would help cannabis businesses to avoid the expensive and dangerous proposition of operating an all-cash service. GFA will start offering their services starting Oct 1. The credit union will help with such services as cash management, checking account, payroll, wire transfers, and bill payments. Although GFA has made the move to service cannabis clients, many other financial institutes are still wary of getting involved with the cannabis market fearing federal backlash. However, GFA’s decision to enter the cannabis market has brought relief to many stakeholders in the industry especially for public safety reasons.
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September 13, 2018
House Committee Advances Medical Cannabis Research
The House Judiciary Committee approved the Medical Cannabis Research Act which would dramatically increase the country’s access to cannabis for research purposes. The bill paves the way for a more steadfast federal licensing process that would permit medical-grade cannabis to be grown for state-funded research. The bill was presented to the House earlier this year by U.S. Rep Matt Gaetz. The approval of the bill by the House Judiciary Committee would represent a major breakthrough for federal cannabis reform. If the bill were to pass, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions would be required to license two research facilities for cannabis cultivation within one year. The bill would also assist veterans to participate in federally approved cannabis clinic trials.
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September 12, 2018
53 Percent of NJ Voters Say Yes to Recreational Cannabis if it Lowers Taxes
The key to legalizing adult-use marijuana in NJ is apparently tied to taxes. A recent poll of NJ residents showed that more than 50% would be in favor of legalizing recreational marijuana if it helped reduce taxes. When the reduction of taxes was taken out the equation, only 44 percent said they would support legalization while 31 percent opposed. 1,500 registered voters were contacted by TargetSmart which conducted the research. The NJ legislature is diligently working on a bill that would legalize adult-use in NJ. The bill is spearheaded by Gov. Phil Murphy who promised to legalize the expansion of the medical marijuana program and to legalize recreational marijuana. Most likely, some type of taxation on commercial business will be tied to the bill.
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September 11, 2018
Exclusive: New Report Predicts CBD Market will Hit $22 Billion by 2022
The THC cannabis market isn’t the only cannabis-derived product making noise in the industry. Don’t look now but according to a new estimate, the hemp-CBD market is targeted to hit $22 billion by 2022. By spinning off into its own lucrative industry, the hemp-CBD market is poised to outperform the THC infused cannabis market. One of the core reasons why CBD has been on the rise is due to the health benefits it can provide. It has been linked to treating many ailments including PTSD, anxiety and epilepsy to name a few. On top of that, CBD does not provide that “high” sensation like it’s counterpart THC which makes it more appealing to many people. Furthermore, the CBD market has gained popularity and financial success due to its penetration into the health and beauty and culinary markets. Although it has become a trending item, CBD is still highly regulated which for the most part is stunting its full potential for development at the moment.
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September 10, 2018
FDA Commissioner Throws Subtle Support Towards Cannabis Decriminalization
The US Food and Drug Administration has hinted at support for decriminalization of cannabis. In a recent interview on CNBC’s Squawk Box, the FDA’s Commissioner Scott Gottlieb commented on how marijuana and alcohol are not comparable substances thus it can’t be determined whether one is safer than the other. Gottlieb views them as two very distinct substances that have different use patterns. Although indirect and soft on his approach, Gottlieb did say that there is a difference between legalization and decriminalization in that we can decriminalize the use and possession of certain substances without having to legalize and promote the use of them. The FDA has recently taken a softer stance on cannabis especially with the approval of the first cannabis-derived medication for epilepsy.
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September 10, 2018
Cannabis Stocks Boosted by Aurora’s Acquisition of Uruguay-based ICC Labs
Uruguay which was the first country to fully legalize cannabis will have Canada following in its footsteps. Aurora Cannabis Inc. has reached a deal to buy Montevideo, Uruguay based ICC Labs Inc. for about $290 million. The latest news of the acquisition boosted cannabis stocks all across the board. Currently, Uruguay is the only country that is allowed to cultivate CBD-rich hemp on a commercial scale and allows licensed producers to grow hemp with THC concentration of up to 1%. CEO Terry Booth hopes that the fist-mover advantage will pay off financially in a continent with more than 420 million people. ICC is positioning itself to become the leading producer of CBD extracts globally.
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September 7, 2018
Brooklyn DA’s Plan Could Erase Thousands of Cannabis Convictions
In a sweeping move, Brooklyn’s DA Eric Gonzalez announced that his administration will expunge the records of at least 20,000 minor cannabis related convictions. DA Gonzalez with the support of his counterpart from Manhattan, made it clear earlier this year that they would no longer prosecute most cases involving minor cannabis crimes; however, the process has been slow and inefficient to date. New York has a reputation of having some of the most lopsided racial disparities in marijuana convictions. The city has been slow and almost unwilling to change its stance on ending the discriminatory marijuana possession policy. However, there are some positive trends developing with Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration endorsing legalization, and Democratic challenger Cynthia Nixon campaigning on a platform of pro-legalization.
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September 7, 2018
Congress will Pass Legalization Bills Next Year, Lawmakers Say
Two U.S. congressmen at a Cannabis Law Institute forum said that Congress will most likely pass cannabis legislation such as the STATES ACT but not before the mid-term elections. Any congressional action regarding cannabis bills will have to wait after November irrespective of the amount of positive support the bills have garnered. Bills like the STATES ACT would exempt states with legal cannabis laws from federal prosecution. According to the congressmen, the STATES ACT along with other cannabis-related bills will likely pass irrespective of which political party takes control of Congress. With increasing support from the public and more politicians seeing the benefits of cannabis, the momentum for legalization has increased. Medical cannabis has especially seen a sharp increase in political support. Lawmakers say that at the very least, people want to legalize cannabis for medicinal purposes.
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September 7, 2018
U.S. Hotels Now Serving CBD-Infused Room Service Food
According to Moneyish, several top of the line hotels across the country are offering guests room service menus that feature various comfort food items infused with non-psychoactive CBD. These high-end hotels are offering their new CBD infused food items hoping to cash in on the ever-increasing demand for various cannabis products. Many managers at luxury hotels are constantly finding new methods to please guests and adding CBD extracts to their food items provides another incentive for them. Ultimately, the hotels that offer CDB-infused cuisine to their guests are hoping to change people’s attitude and views of cannabis as strictly a psychoactive substance. As cannabis-infused foods and drinks become more popular and accepted, it could open more minds at the same time.
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September 6, 2018
Mayors Steer Legislators Toward Social Equity in Marijuana Bill
Three New Jersey mayors called for legislators to strengthen social justice and equity measures in recreational cannabis-use bills that are up for legislative vote. Newark’s Ras Baraka, Jersey City’s Steve Fulop, and Hoboken’s Ravinder Bhalla all agree that more needs to be done with the bills in order to have support of the city of Newark and other cities as well. Even though the mayors all support adult-use legalization in New Jersey, they want more in terms of marijuana convictions and records. The mayors want all marijuana and distribution records of criminals to be expunged, as well as the release of anyone presently incarcerated for marijuana-only convictions. In addition, the mayors seek for the development of social impact zones and want to give more authority and power to municipalities to decide on the amount and locations of future dispensaries.
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September 6, 2018
Study Find Marijuana Use Among Baby Boomers Doubled in Past Decade
A new study conducted by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that the number of senior citizens consuming and smoking weed has rapidly increased in recent years. The notion that cannabis is predominantly used by young people is debunked according to the new data. In particular, adults 50 and older have seen a steady increase in recent years. The study also found that the legalization of cannabis does not lead to higher rates of use among teens or young adults. This particular trend also held true even as legal recreational sales began in some states like California. Not only in California, but also in states like Colorado, teen cannabis use has declined as well. In short, recent research suggests that the older generation is now consuming more cannabis than young people than in the past.
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September 5, 2018
Marlboro Maker ‘Evaluating Opportunities’ in Cannabis Industry
One of the largest tobacco groups in North America, Altria Group, is considering entering the cannabis market to expand their business opportunities. Altria owns Marlboro maker Philip Morris USA and is an investor in alcohol mega-brand Anheuser-Busch InBev. If indeed Altria decides to participate in the cannabis game, it would be another milestone and victory for the cannabis space. Currently, the group is studying and evaluating the current market and opportunities mindful of the strict federal regulations involved in the space. Altria (if they do) wouldn’t be the first cigarette maker to get involved in the cannabis space. This past June, British tobacco giant Imperial Brand penetrated the market by investing in Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies, a UK based medical cannabis startup.
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September 5, 2018
Democratic Senators Push Bill to Grant Veterans Access to Medical Cannabis
With support from two Democratic lawmakers, a bill that would allow doctors with the Department of Veterans Affairs to prescribe medical marijuana to veterans has been introduced to the U.S. Senate. The bill called the Veterans Medical Marijuana Safe Harbor Act was introduced by Sen. Bill Nelson of Florida and Sen. Bill Schatz of Hawaii. According to the two senators, the primary purpose of the bill is to allow veterans to use, possess, or transport medical marijuana in accordance with the State laws that it is being applied to. If passed, the bill will allow veterans more access to the drug in a controlled manner. One of the major benefits of the bill is that it may be an effective way to slow the nationwide opioid overdoes epidemic by providing veterans a new way to cope with their chronic pain. The bill also calls for more research on “the effects of medical marijuana on veterans in pain.” Along with this research, other treatment programs involving medical marijuana have been authorized by the bill.
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September 5, 2018
Study: Marijuana Use Among College-Aged Youth at 30 Year High
A recent University of Michigan research on cannabis use has found that the rate of marijuana use by young people of college age is at its highest point in more than 30 years. According to the research, the use of marijuana by young college adults age 19-22 rose in recent years and has been on a rising trend over the last decade. Researchers from the study have also stated that heavy usage of cannabis can have negative consequences including a decline in mental health. To make the matter worse, the use of marijuana seems to be higher in young adults who are not college. Research has found that non-college students in the same 19-22 age range use marijuana even more. According to a researcher on the project, there is scientific evidence that indicates that heavy marijuana use can be dangerous to cognitive functions and mental health. Considering how the brain is still developing in the early 20s, this trend amongst non-college students is worrisome.
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September 4, 2018
Is Anheuser-Busch Next to Strike a Deal With the Cannabis Industry?
The trend of alcohol brewers getting involved in the cannabis space seems to be picking up steam especially with Anheuser-Busch InBev making plans to expand into the cannabis space. Although relatively quiet, there is evidence that the largest brewer is interested in producing and selling THC-infused products in the near future. The company has slowly invested in the infrastructure for such a project including creating a new position, Chief Non-Alcohol Beverages Officer, within the company’s hierarchy. The mega company hopes this line of “alternative offerings” will account for 20 percent of its overall sales by 2025. With smoking weed a dying trend, many companies are exploring the legal cannabis market through a more socially accepted means. Anheuser-Busch is following in the footsteps of Constellation Brands and Molson Coors who have recently invested heavily into the cannabis space to expand their production and distribution lines to boost their sales and opportunities.
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September 4, 2018
Louisiana Regulator Joins Officials in Call for Congress to Allow Banking for Marijuana Industry
A handful of states have taken steps to convince the federal government to change or loosen the strict banking regulations that are in place in the current cannabis space. 13 state financial regulators have signed and proposed a letter to congressional leaders seeking “safe harbor” legislation for banks. Louisiana is the latest state to push congress to clear the way for banks to freely conduct business with the cannabis industry. Currently, the cannabis industry is mostly a cash run business with businesses in the industry finding it difficult to find financial institutions willing to take on a client working in the marijuana space. Most banks thus far have steered clear of the industry to avoid costly compliance and regulatory burdens.
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