Monthly Archives: December 2017

The Cops and Politicians Joining Canada’s Cannabis Business

As Canada moves towards legalising recreational cannabis, there’s a surprising group of entrepreneurs jumping into the market: cops and politicians. In 2015, former Toronto police chief Julian Fantino was “completely opposed” to marijuana legalisation and supported mandatory jail time for minor cannabis offences. Mr Fantino, who was also a Cabinet minister in the former Conservative government, criticised the now governing-Liberals’ plan to legalise the drug, saying it would make smoking marijuana “a normal, everyday activity…

Source: http://www.cannabisculture.com/content/2017/12/30/cops-politicians-joining-canadas-cannabis-business…

Talk About Marijuana At Christmas This Year

134097_10150140899238032_23906288031_8089338_6869920_o-e1322953486444-500x166We have much to be merry for this year. Lawmakers in 26 states have passed legislation to advance cannabis reform, including New Hampshire becoming the 22nd state to decriminalize marijuana and West Virginia becoming the 30th state to pass a medical marijuana program.

This progress has come as a result of years of organizing and conversations with our fellow citizens about the role of government in relationship to a plant. Having the tough conversations about the scope of the government’s right to stop, search, and incarcerate individuals for possessing or consuming marijuana for either personal or medical benefits.

And now for the first time ever, Gallup polling recorded outright majorities of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents supporting the legalization of marijuana. The only way to find out if this includes your aunts, uncles, cousins, and other relatives is if you bring it up.

So use us as a resource – NORML.org has FactsheetsTalking Points, and you can even pass your phone or computer around the table to have your friends and family contact their lawmakers right then and there to support reform in our Action Center.

As we look toward an uncertain future, we know we must work to both sustain our existing gains and to win future victories. With your continued financial support, we are confident that we can bring the era of marijuana prohibition to an end and usher in the new era of

The Importance of Cory Booker

For the modern movement to end cannabis prohibition, Sen. Cory Booker checks off all the boxes when it comes to being an all-star.

The New Jersey Democrat, born in 1969, has lived a remarkable political arc, beginning with outstanding scholarship at Stanford University, attending Oxford University on a Rhodes scholarship and graduating from Yale Law School in 1997. A year later, Booker, not even 30, was elected to Newark’s City Council. In 2006, he became the city’s youngest-ever mayor. Booker received national media attention for the innovative and successful public policies he championed, which put him in position to win a special election for the Senate in 2013 after the death of incumbent Democrat Frank Lautenberg.

From his early days on the City Council, while addressing Newark’s then-rampant crime problems, Booker readily embraced “harm reduction” policies rather than the “arrest and lock them up” mentality long championed by police, prosecutors and prison officials. During his seven years as mayor, he worked with the Drug Policy Alliance to help Newark become a vanguard urban community.

Cannabis and the Environment: Navigating the Interplay Between Genetics and Transcriptomics

It is that time of year where the holidays afford us an opportunity for rest, recuperation and introspection. Becoming a new father to a healthy baby girl and having the privilege to make a living as a scientist, fills me with an immeasurable sense of appreciation and indebtedness. I’ve also been extremely fortunate this year to spend significant time with world-renowned cannabis experts, such as Christian West, Adam Jacques and Elton Prince, whom have shared with me a tremendous wealth of their knowledge about cannabis cultivation and the development of unique cannabis genetics. Neither of these gentlemen have formal scientific training in plant genetics; however, through decades of experimentation, observation and implementation, they’ve very elegantly used alchemy and the principles of Mendelian genetics to push the boundaries of cannabis genetics, ultimately modulating the expression of specific cannabinoids and terpenes. Hearing of their successes (and failures) has triggered significant wonderment and curiosity with respect to what can be done beyond the genetic level to keep pushing the equilibrium in this new frontier of medicine.

Lighting conditions can greatly impact the expression of terpenes (and cannabinoids) in cannabis.Of course genetics are the foundation for the production of premium cannabis. Without the proper genetic code, one cannot expect the cannabis plant to express the target constituents of interest. However, what happens when you have an elite genetic code, the holy grail of cannabis nucleotides if you will, and yet your plant does …

Prohibition Money Trail Leads to Legalization

Money and economics drove the push for federal cannabis prohibition starting in the twilight of the Jazz Age. These forces continue to play a tug of war on both sides of the fight to end prohibition.

You can look at culture, politics, lifestyles or whatever. But to understand the ban on pot decades ago and the effort to make it legal now, you also need to follow the money.

Harry J. Anslinger, who led the fight to ban marijuana, arguably had an economic motive to make it illegal four years after the 21st Amendment repealed alcohol prohibition in 1933. He’d risen to prominence in the federal government in 1929 as assistant commissioner in the U.S. Treasury’s Bureau of Prohibition. With beer, wine and liquor once again legal to consume, he would’ve been out of a job if not for his successful quest to spread the myth of Reefer Madness as the first commissioner of the Treasury Department’s Federal Bureau of Narcotics. By scaring politicians and others about the supposed dangers of cannabis, Anslinger got the ball rolling on marijuana prohibition.

Many argue that this federal effort to eradicate cannabis helped fatten the bottom line of William Randolph Hearst by eliminating hemp as a competitor to timber interests held by the newspaper magnate. Hearst also had no problem using tales of marijuana debauchery by scary Mexicans and African Americans to sell more newspapers.

California Rolls Out Licensing For Cannabis Businesses

Last week, the Bureau of Cannabis Control issued the first licenses for California’s new market. The first license went to Moxie, a cannabis distribution company out of Lynwood.

The search feature for the list of licenses issued so far

As of the publication of this article, the Bureau, the state authority tasked with leading the regulation of the industry, has issued 43 temporary licenses. So far, four laboratories have received licenses, along with a number of retailers, distributors, microbusinesses in both medical and adult-use markets.

The labs to receive their temporary licenses so far are pH Solutions, Steep Hill Labs, Pure Analytics and ORCA Cannalytics. Judging by the number of temporary medical and adult-use licenses awarded so far, it appears the Bureau is trying to issue a similar amount for each sector, distributing the number of licenses between the two equitably.

You can find the list of licensees here, and search between the dates of 12/15/17 to 1/2/18 to get the most up-to-date list of licenses awarded. “Last week, we officially launched our online licensing system, and today we’re pleased to issue the first group of temporary licenses to cannabis businesses that fall under the Bureau’s jurisdiction,” says Lori Ajax, Bureau of Cannabis Control Chief. “We plan to issue many more before January 1.”

According to the press release, temporary licenses are only issued to applicants with prior local authorization in the form of a license or permit …

12 Stoner Songs for the High Holidaze

For cannabis enthusiasts—especially in California, where 2018 will mark the legalization of “adult use” sales—who really want to celebrate the holiday season, “yule” get higher than a partridge in a pear tree listening to the following dozen seasonal tokin’ tunes.

1. DENT MAY: “I’LL BE STONED FOR CHRISTMAS” 

L.A.-by-way-of Mississippi ukulele auteur Dent May evokes Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound with this poppy piano-driven ode to being home for the holidays. “So I’m trying to get lifted with you now/We broke into my cousin’s stash/We’re having a blast,” he sings “Got an angel on my treetop/And a devil on my mind/Have a smoke and pour a big shot/’Tis the season to be high.” Being the nice young man he is, Dent then apologizes to his mother.

2. ADAM SANDLER: “THE CHANUKAH SONG”

Total Yeast & Mold Count: What Cultivators & Business Owners Need to Know

Editor’s note: This article should serve as a foundation of knowledge for yeast and mold in cannabis. Beginning in January 2018, we will publish a series of articles focused entirely on yeast and mold, discussing topics such as TYMC testing, preventing yeast and mold in cultivation and treatment methods to reduce yeast and mold.


Cannabis stakeholders, including cultivators, extractors, brokers, distributors and consumers, have been active in the shadows for decades. With the legalization of recreational adult use in several states, and more on the way, safety of the distributed product is one of the main concerns for regulators and the public. Currently, Colorado1, Nevada and Canada2 require total yeast and mold count (TYMC) compliance testing to evaluate whether or not cannabis is safe for human consumption. As the cannabis industry matures, it is likely that TYMC or other stringent testing for yeast and mold will be adopted in the increasingly regulated medical and recreational markets.

The goal of this article is to provide general information on yeast and mold, and to explain why TYMC is an important indicator in determining cannabis safety.

Yeast & Mold

Photo credit: Steep Hill- a petri dish of mold growth from tested cannabis

Yeast and mold are members of the fungi family. Fungus, widespread in nature, can be found in the air, water, soil, vegetation and in decaying matter. The types of fungus found in different geographic regions vary based upon …

WHO Report: No Public Health Problems Attributable To CBD

oil_bottlesThe use of the naturally occurring cannabinoid CBD is safe, well tolerated, and is not associated with any significant adverse public health effects, according to the findings of a preliminary report compiled by the World Health Organization’s Expert Committee on Drug Dependence.

Authors of the report declare that CBD is “not associated with abuse potential” and that it does not induce physical dependence. “CBD is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile,” they conclude.

Nonetheless, they acknowledge that CBD remains classified as a schedule I controlled substance under US federal law – a classification that defines it as possessing a “high potential for abuse.”

The WHO report also comments on CBD’s therapeutic efficacy, finding that the substance has “been demonstrated as an effective treatment for epilepsy,” and that there exists “preliminary evidence that CBD may be a useful treatment for a number of other medical conditions,” including Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and psychosis.

While authors acknowledge that the “unsanctioned medical use of CBD” oils and extracts is relatively common, they affirm, “[T]here is no evidence of recreational use of CBD or any public health related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.”

The World Health Organization is in the process of considering whether to place CBD within the agency’s international drug scheduling code. In September, NORML submitted written testimony to the US Food and Drug Administration in opposition to the enactment of new international restrictions regarding CBD …

Safe for Now (But Not For Long)

download_(1).pngYesterday afternoon, both the House of Representatives and the Senate voted on H.J. Res. 123, a Continuing Resolution that keeps the Government open through December 22, 2017. President Trump signed it into law this morning. H.J. Res 123 continues to fund the Federal Government at existing levels and includes all policy provisions as the previous budget. This includes the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment which is the only thing protecting medical cannabis patients from federal interference and prosecution.

Source: http://www.safeaccessnow.org/safe_for_now_but_not_for_long…

Federal Medical Marijuana Protections Temporarily Extended

Medical marijuanaCongressional leadership voted to enact a two-week continuing resolution that maintains present federal spending levels and priorities through December 8, 2017. The resolution extends medical cannabis patient protections imposed by the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment until that date.

The amendment, which has been in place since 2014, maintains that federal funds cannot be used to prevent states from “implementing their own state laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana.”

“While we are pleased that these critical protections will continue, two weeks is not enough certainty for the millions of Americans who rely on medical marijuana for treatment and the businesses who serve them. As Congress works out a long-term funding bill, it must also include these protections. And ultimately, Congress must act to put an end to the cycle of uncertainty and permanently protect state medical marijuana programs—and adult use—from federal interference. The American people have spoken. It’s past time that Congress catch up.” – Representative Earl Blumenauer (D-OR)

Reps Rohrabacher and Blumenauer are both co-chairs of the bipartisan Congressional Cannabis Caucus.

Congressional leadership must reauthorize this language as part of the forthcoming budget in order for the provisions to stay in effect. In July, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) offered identical language before the Senate Appropriations Committee, which approved it. However, House Rules Committee Chair Peter Sessions (R-TX) has refused to allow House members to vote on similar language. The provision will now be considered by House

The Cannabis Business Awards 2017 Presented by Chloe Villano and Clover Leaf

The awards gala is celebrating the fifth year of legalization with a lineup of celebrities, NFL athletes and the best of the cannabis industry worldwide.

Since 2011, Chloe Villano and Clover Leaf have been producing the Cannabis Business Awards to celebrate cannabis professionals deserving of historical recognition and esteemed accolades for industry progression and innovation. The expectation for this year’s awards show is pure excitement as the celebration continues to flourish as a mainstay for the cannabis business community. Winning one of these awards can propel the course of a budding business or career exponentially.

The Cannabis Business Awards features industry power players including CEO and Founder Chloe Villano, an entrepreneur featured in People Magazine’s “Marijuana Millionaires.” As one of the first and most sought-after consultants in the industry, Villano was the first executive to receive full accredited approval from the Department of Higher Education for her cannabis school Clover Leaf University.

The show features an all-star lineup including NFL Super Bowl Champions Jim McMahon and Marvin Washington. Guest presenters include Stormy Simon, the former president of Overstock.com, and the popular Chief Greenbud, who combines country music with a contemporary pro-marijuana focus that appeals to listeners across genres and generations.

Nominees include 12-year-old Alexis Bortell, who is suing Attorney General Jeff Sessions over the nation’s federal prohibition of medical marijuana and her access to medicine for her epilepsy. This deserving list of nominees also includes former NFL pass blocker Eugene …

Designing Your Continuing Cannabis Education Program

As many states’ medical cannabis programs are already in full swing and several are launching or nearing their one-year or biennial maturation periods, medical cannabis dispensaries and cannabis cultivation and processing facilities should be fine-tuning their Continuing Cannabis Education Program, or CCEP, and be ready for inspection by state agencies.

While states with medical cannabis programs administer them through various agencies such as Department of Medicine/Health, Department of Pharmacy, Department of Commerce, Alcoholic Beverage Control, each has their own minimum requirements for continuing education in the medical cannabis space, and each structures their program in the direction within which that particular regulatory agency leans. Each state’s personality also brings an influential component as well; for example, a state with a highly visible opioid crisis may place greater emphasis on substance abuse training.

Suffice it to say that while there is certainly insight to be gained from knowing your particular state, there are certain elements of an ongoing professional development program that should be considered in each CCEP. This article will explore a few of the elements integral to any successful human capital and professional development plan from a vantage of compliance, and will offer some insight into the exceptional training methodology designed by Midwest Compassion Center and Bloom Medicinals.

There are a number of key considerations in developing a Continuing Cannabis Education Program, and a thoughtful CCEP should be developed specifically to meet the needs of both the organization …

Study: Alcohol Sales Fall Following Cannabis Legalization

personal_cultivationSales of alcoholic beverages decline following the enactment of medical marijuana access laws, according to a working paper authored by a team of researchers from the University of Connecticut and Georgia State University.

Authors evaluated the relationship between medical marijuana laws and retail alcohol sales for more than 2,000 US counties for the years 2006 to 2015. Alcohol sales trends in medical cannabis states were compared to sales trends in states where cannabis remained illegal. Researchers determined that counties located in medical cannabis states, on average, experienced a reduction in monthly alcohol sales of 15 percent.

Researchers concluded: “We find that marijuana and alcohol are strong substitutes. … States legalizing medical marijuana use experience significant decreases in the aggregate sale of alcohol, beer and wine. Moreover, the effects are not short-lived, with significant reductions observed up to 24 months after the passage of the law.”

Consumer trend data from California reports that those with legal access to cannabis frequently reduce their alcohol intake. A 2016 analysis of beer sales in Colorado, Oregon, and Washington reported that retail sales “collectively underperformed” in the years following the enactment of adult use marijuana regulation.

Full text of the study, “Helping settle the marijuana and alcohol debate: Evidence from scanner data,” appears online here.

Source: http://blog.norml.org/2017/12/01/study-alcohol-sales-fall-following-cannabis-legalization/…

Innovation Is Changing How We Use Cannabis

This website is informational and cannot diagnose or treat illness or disease. Medical marijuana should be used under the direction of a licensed healthcare provider. This site is intended for adults and legal medical marijuana patients.This site contains advertisements. If you click a link and make a purchase, I may be paid a commission.

The Cannabis Industry Is Changing

Sustained Growth & Innovation

This month, I had the privilege of attending MJBIZCON, I’m pleased to report (despite an unfriendly White House administration) the cannabis industry continues to grow at an astonishing rate.

MJBIZCON, the first national marijuana trade show, began in 2012. They started with just 20ish exhibitors and had only 400+ attendees.

Five years later, MJBIZCON 2017 was held at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The show featured over 675 exhibitors, 110+ speakers, and more than 18,500 industry representatives were in attendance.

It was massive, remarkably educational, and overall, just incredible.

What do you imagine when thinking of a marijuana trade show?

In a legal recreational state like Nevada, one might sense the occasional whiff of a cannabis vape pen while listening to the keynote speeches, but don’t expect a party scene. MJBIZCON is a legitimate professional trade show – people in suits, making deals, educating, and networking.

The Way We Use Cannabis Is Changing

One of the most interesting trends in the cannabis industry is innovation around the way consumers use marijuana.

 

The Industry Is Trending