Cannabis News Roundup

A Selection of Cannabis News from Around the Net.


Cannabis News Roundup 2020

A selection of Cannabis News items from around the internet that have recently crossed our screens.  Note that links to the full articles were current when they were added to this page... due to the nature of the internet, the links may have changed.


 Sponsored Links:

JANUARY 2020  

Cannabis use rising faster among depressed Americans
Regular cannabis use has risen more quickly among people with depression, and they're less likely to perceive it as risky, compared with people who aren't depressed, a U.S. study suggests.
Researchers examined data collected from a total of almost 729,000 people aged 12 years and older between 2005 and 2017, including any prior-month cannabis use and any depression experienced over the previous year.
By the final year of the study, about 19% of people with depression reported at least some cannabis use, compared with 8.7% of individuals without a recent history of depression. In 2005, about 10.2% of people with depression and 5.7% of individuals without depression used the drug.

Illinois governor pardons 11,000 for low-level marijuana convictions
Illinois governor JB Pritzker granted more than 11,000 pardons for low-level marijuana convictions on Tuesday, describing the step as a first wave of thousands of such expungements anticipated under the state's new marijuana legalization law.

Beware Twitter Bots Spreading False Cannabis Claims
Twitter bots (accounts controlled by software instead of people) are spreading false claims about the medical uses of cannabis, a new study in the American Journal of Public Health shows. Researchers from the University of Southern California found that bot accounts shared health claims about cannabis more often than real accounts during an eight-month span in 2018. Many of the bots stated that cannabis can be used to treat health issues like cancer, Crohn's disease and plantar fasciitis, EurekAlert reported.

Nearly $3.2M in Legal Cannabis Sold in Illinois on First Day, State Says
More than 77,000 transactions netted nearly $3.2 million in marijuana product sales on the first day of legal cannabis in Illinois, the state announced Thursday.
The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation reported 77,128 transactions took place at cannabis dispensaries around Illinois, generating $3,176,256.71 on Day 1.

'There's just no money coming in': Cannabis sector bracing for wave of insolvencies in 2020
Oversupply, declining prices, and a slow rollout of stores in Ontario has led to consecutive quarters of weak revenue for many licensed producers.
Cannabis industry insiders are bracing for a slew of bankruptcies in the coming year as small and medium-sized companies low on cash struggle to raise funds in the downtrodden sector.

Why weed edibles are far more risky than most people think
While the United States is yet to fully nationalize recreational marijuana, our northern neighbors are, as usual, ahead of the curve. Recreational marijuana has been fully legal across Canada since October 2018. That has given Canadian medical researchers ample time to observe the social and public health effects of full, nationwide legalization. And it turns out that edibles - one of the more benign-seeming pot products - have an outsize role in causing problems.
Now, Canadian doctors are warning the public that pot edibles might not be as safe as the general public believes them to be. While it is difficult if not impossible to "overdose" on weed edibles to the point of death, negative effects like anxiety, panic attacks, and psychosis can send consumers to the hospital. Unlike smoked or vaped weed, weed edibles have less predictable effects, take far longer to set in, and resemble quotidian pastries and candies - and these three traits combined have led to many more health and safety issues with edibles than with the plain old leaf.

Forget aspirin, these marijuana-based painkillers are 30 times more powerful
The next revolution in medical marijuana may have nothing to do with cannabinoids. Instead, we're talking about flavonoids, which scientists have known for almost 40 years possess an anti-inflammatory property more powerful than aspirin. But only due to Canada's legalization of marijuana have researchers been able to dig into these cannabis properties with the proper rigor befitting modern science.

Legal cannabis market of UK could pass £2 billion mark by 2024
As the moral hysteria, racism and classism which had for the longest time stigmatised cannabis use finally dies down, governments around the globe are relaxing their laws surrounding the drug. Seeing it as an opportunity to reduce policing costs and open up a valuable new form of tax revenue, 2017 saw Uruguay become the first country to legalise recreational cannabis use, while Canada followed suit in 2018, becoming the first G7 member to do so. In the US, recreational marijuana is legal in nine states, while medical marijuana is legal in 30 - cashing in on the fact 76% of North Americans would try legal cannabis therapeutic products.
As a result, the market for cannabis in North America is projected to boom to $37.9 billion by 2024, according to Prohibition Partners, a cannabis-focused strategy and research consultancy. The firm's Global Cannabis Report also predicted that all 50 US states will legalise recreational cannabis by the end of 2024, due to the economic success of its introduction so far. Legal cannabis is not only on the rise in the Americas, however. With a population of more than double that of the US and Canada, Europe's cannabis market is set to become the world's largest legal cannabis market, having grown more in the last year than the last six combined.

Newfound Cannabis Compound May Be 30 Times More Potent Than THC
Two newfound cannabinoids have been discovered in the glands of the Cannabis plant, and one of them may be at least 30 times as potent as the high-inducing compound THC.
No one knows, however, exactly what effect these cannabinoids actually have on the human body.

Is Cannabis the Answer to Everything?
One evening a few months ago, I lit a joint of Granddaddy Purple. I had arrived home late-again-from work, anxiety knotting in my chest. There was still so much to do, and I couldn't seem to start on any of it. I needed to hustle, but first, I needed to relax. Introduced in 2003, Granddaddy Purple is now one of the most popular cannabis strains, largely for its ability to quickly calm users. Mine came pre-rolled, in recycled packaging printed with soy-based ink, from a Canadian company called 48North; according to the company's website, the strain is "best loved for evenings spent dreaming (without being asleep, that is)." Each strain 48North produces has a suggested situational pairing: tackling your to-do list, giggling with your best friend, enjoying your favorite meal. I just wanted something to make me feel better.

Armed guards, secret location: Inside an illegal marijuana bazaar publicized on Instagram
The address was posted on a Friday night and visible only to a select group of people: the followers of a private Instagram account.
It was a darkened street in downtown Los Angeles. Not long after an NBC News producer arrived, he noticed a figure rushing toward him, a man wearing a bulletproof vest with a handgun strapped to his hip. "Follow me," the man said.

The purple haze over Arizona was caused by a marijuana farm, but it's not what you think
The light from a medical marijuana farm filled the sky over Snowflake, Arizona, with a strange, purple glow on a recent foggy morning.
Cara Smith took a picture of the scene about 6:30 a.m. Friday on her way to work at Copperstate Farms, the largest medical marijuana wholesaler in the state.

Inside America's First Weed Restaurant, Where You'll Be Paranoid for No Reason
The thing you need to know about the food at Los Angeles' Original Cannabis Cafe, America's first legal weed restaurant, is that it is not actually made with marijuana. Sure, pre-made, individually wrapped weed edibles are available for purchase, but your entree will not be cooked with THC butter nor will your dessert kick in on the drive home.

Wisconsin man admits to mixing his mother's cremated remains with marijuana, police say
A Wisconsin couple's drug bust took a strange turn when one of the suspects told police he cut his product with an unusual substance: his mother's cremated remains.
Austin Schroeder, 26, and his girlfriend, 21-year-old Kaitlin Geiger, 21, each face felony drug charges after a tip led authorities to their apartment, WITI reported.

MCSO: Dangerous form of concentrated marijuana, 'crude oil' has hit Arizona black market
A dangerous form of marijuana is flooding across the Arizona border and quickly spreading across the U.S."Seizures are up, our arrests are up, the dangers for our deputies has increased dramatically," said Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone.

Study sheds light on link between cannabis, anxiety and stress
A molecule produced by the brain that activates the same receptors as marijuana is protective against stress by reducing anxiety-causing connections between two brain regions, Vanderbilt University Medical Center researchers report.

Bees Absolutely Love Cannabis and It Could Help Restore Their Populations
Bees are major fans of hemp and a recent study has found that the taller the hemp plants are the larger the number of bees that will flock to it.
The new research, spearheaded by researchers at Cornell University and published last month in Environmental Entomology, shows that humans aren't the only fans of weed. The findings also reinforce a study published last year at Colorado State University that discovered the same thing.





Michigan medical marijuana seller gets prison: 'Federal law has not changed,' judge says
The former owner of medical-marijuana dispensaries in several Michigan cities was sentenced Tuesday, Jan. 28, to nearly 16 years in federal prison.
Danny Trevino, 47, of Lansing, who had Hydroworld dispensaries in Grand Rapids, Flint, Jackson, Lansing and elsewhere, had avoided state criminal and civil penalties over the years but was convicted of multiple federal charges.

A Brief Global History of the War on Cannabis
Before the war on drugs put marijuana farmers firmly in its cross-hairs, cannabis was being grown openly and with commercial success on every continent on earth, much as it had been for centuries.
This ancient and extensive history of cannabis farming has given rise to the idea that prohibitions put in place in the mid-20th century were the first of their kind - a whirlwind of racial, political, and economic forces that successfully used marijuana prohibition as a pretext for suppression.

Trump falsely claims that weed makes people "lose IQ points" in secret hour-long recording
President Donald Trump falsely claimed that marijuana makes people "lose IQ points" in a secret recording released by indicted former Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas.
Parnas released the recording, which captured more than one hour of conversation at a private donor dinner with Trump in 2018, to show that the president told him that he would fire then-Ukraine Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch. But the recording, which was apparently captured by Parnas' indicted associate Igor Fruman, also featured Trump discussing Kim Jong Un's golf game, the European Union trying to "screw the United States," the 2016 election . . . and his views on marijuana.

Canberra becomes the first city in Australia to legalise cannabis for personal use
Canberra has become the first city in Australia to legalise cannabis for personal use. As of Friday, Canberra residents over 18 will be allowed to possess 50g of cannabis and grow two plants per person.
A household can only have four plants total and hydroponic growing will remain illegal, The ABC reported.

Bernie Sanders says he would legalize marijuana on his first day as president
In case you were wondering how big a role marijuana will play in the upcoming political season, take a look at Democratic 2020 candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders. Two days before the Iowa caucus, Sanders pledged to legalize marijuana by executive order on his first day in office if elected president.
"We will end the destructive war on drugs," Sanders said at a rally in Cedar Rapids. "On my first day in office through executive order we will legalize marijuana in every state in this country."

Illinois legal weed sales total nearly $40M in 1st month
Legal marijuana sales totaled nearly $40 million in the first month in Illinois, the state's Department of Financial and Professional Regulation announced Monday.
Sales totaled $39,247,840.83 and dispensaries sold 972,045 items in January after Illinois legalized marijuana on the first of the year, the department said.

Cannabis Coffee: The Contraband Brew Is a Hit in Indonesia's Aceh Province
Agus plunges a wooden paddle into his coffee and marijuana-filled wok, taking care to roast just the right mix of ingredients - and stay one step ahead of police in Indonesia's Aceh province. His contraband brew is a hit with locals and buyers in other parts of the Southeast Asian archipelago, who pay 1.0 million rupiah ($75) for a kilo of it.

Joe Biden kinda, sorta, almost endorses legalizing marijuana
Former Vice President Joe Biden's opposition to fully legalizing marijuana is well known, but on the campaign trail in New Hampshire this week he appeared to change his position.
"I think it is at the point where it has to be, basically, legalized," Biden said on Tuesday in a recording obtained by POLITICO.

Medical marijuana passes first hurdle toward legalization in Kentucky
A bill that would legalize and regulate medical marijuana in Kentucky passed its first hurdle today.
The House Judiciary Committee approved House Bill 136 with a vote of 17 to one. The passage followed a debate in a crowded committee room in Frankfort.

LA County DA To Dismiss Nearly 66K Marijuana Convictions
In a sweeping move, Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey announced that her office has asked the court to dismiss nearly 66,000 marijuana convictions going back decades.
In a news conference Thursday morning, Lacey called it the largest such undertaking in state history.

Canabetics Pharmaceuticals study shows Canabinnoids CBD and CBG Exhibit Anti-tumor Properties on Gastrointestinal Cancer cells
Cannabics Pharmaceuticals Inc. (OTCQB: CNBX), a leader in personalized cannabinoid medicine focused on cancer and its side effects, announced today that in a series of tests conducted at the company's High Through-put Screening (HTS) facility in Israel, it has been shown that the cannabinoids CBC (Cannabichromene) and CBG (Cannabigerol) both exhibit anti-tumor properties, tested on human Gastrointestinal Cancer Cells.

Ten Must-Experience Events For The Cannabis And Psychedelic Community In 2020
Are you experienced? Or have you ever wanted to become part of the cannabis/hemp/psychedelic experience? If only I had this list of interesting experiences earlier, I might have saved some time and money! When I was a young lad, I followed the Grateful Dead around the country. It didn't matter where I was on the bus, the Grateful Dead was going to be there (wherever there was...) sooner or later. The same holds true for these industry expositions and experiences.





MARCH 2020  

11 states where you might be voting on major marijuana reforms this November
Last year wasn't a great one for advancing marijuana legalization at the state level. Despite high hopes for New Jersey and New York, state legislatures in Trenton and Albany couldn't quite get their acts together, and promising efforts petered out. Illinois was the only state to approve marijuana legalization in 2019.

Kentucky House Votes to Legalize Medical Marijuana
After years of setbacks, medical marijuana advocates cleared a historic hurdle Thursday when the Kentucky House voted to legalize the use of cannabis for medical purposes.
The measure won House passage on a 65-30 vote after an emotional debate, sending the proposal to the Senate. Both chambers are controlled by Republicans.

Canopy Growth to close two greenhouses, cut about 500 positions
Pot producer Canopy Growth Corp (WEED.TO) said on Wednesday it plans to close two of its greenhouses in Aldergrove and Delta, British Columbia, cutting about 500 positions.
The company said it no longer plans to open a third greenhouse in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. Canopy had said last month it aims to focus on reducing costs, as it struggles with a slump in weed prices from oversupply and growing expenses.

Boston prepped and ready for first cannabis retail store's grand opening
Boston's first pot shop is set to open Monday and city officials say traffic, parking and security plans will be in place for the big moment.
Pure Oasis LLC in Dorchester is the state's first economic empowerment applicant and the first minority-owned cannabis business in the state.

Pot entrepreneurs flocking to the Bible Belt for low taxes
From their keen taste for sun-ripened pot to their first meeting at a pro-marijuana rally in college in the 1990s, everything about Chip and Jessica Baker fits the stereotype of cannabis country in Northern California, where they lived for 20 years.
Jessica, with wavy hair that falls halfway down her back, is a practicing herbalist, acupuncturist and aromatherapist who teaches classes on the health benefits of cannabis. Scruffy-bearded Chip wears a jacket with a prominent "grower" patch and hosts a marijuana podcast called "The Real Dirt." They started their pot business in rugged Humboldt County when it was the thriving epicenter of marijuana cultivation.

Welcome to the world of craft weed
Not so long ago, beer drinkers didn't have a lot of options. If you wanted beer, you had to choose between Budweiser or Miller Light or a handful of other cheap options. But in the 1960s and '70s, there was a renaissance in the industry. As regional breweries merged and closed, the craft beer movement was gradually born. Today, we're living in a golden age for beer drinkers, with amazing beer from around the world available almost anywhere.
That is the path the legal weed industry might well follow - if things break right. That's the argument that Ryan Stoa, a law professor at Concordia University, makes in his new book Craft Weed.

Virginia lawmakers vote to decriminalize marijuana, set $25 civil penalty for possession
Possession of small amounts of marijuana will no longer be punishable by jail time in Virginia under decriminalization legislation lawmakers sent to Gov. Ralph Northam on Sunday.
"This means close to 30,000 people a year will no longer be labeled as criminals and no longer will suffer the negative repercussions of a criminal conviction," said Sen. Adam Ebbin, D-Alexandria, who carried the legislation in the Senate.

Missouri Senate passes ban on marijuana-infused candy
Missouri senators have passed a bill to ban marijuana-infused candy for medical use. State senators voted 28-1 for the bill Monday. It now heads to the state House.
Senate Bill 523 would prohibit edible marijuana products that could be geared toward children, such as candies or gummies shaped like animals or fruit.

Ghana legalizes cannabis for health and industrial purposes
Ghana has legalized the use of cannabis for health and industrial purposes as it joins other African countries hoping to derive economic and health benefits from the substance. On Friday the country's Parliament passed into law the Narcotics Control Commission Bill, 2019.
The law now makes the country's Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) a Commission with enhanced powers to oversee the industrial use of some narcotic substances.

Canada's Cannabis Stores Face A Rush Amid Coronavirus Stockpiling
Marijuana retailers in many parts of the country are reporting a spike in sales as customers stock up ahead of potential sales disruptions during the COVID-19 outbreak.
And they may not be wrong; Canada's largest cannabis company on Tuesday announced it is temporarily shutting all its retail locations and focusing on online sales.

Black market cannabis more popular than ever in Canada
Investors and companies are losing billions as the black market remains one of the most popular ways to buy cannabis in Canada.
When legalisation of cannabis happened in Canada there was much rejoicing throughout the world. But things are not turning out as well for a variety of reasons.
Legal weed is garbage. According to a Canadian government survey released last month, 40% of the country's cannabis consumers admitted obtaining the drug illegally since legalisation.

Cannabis dispensaries listed as essential businesses under L.A. County coronavirus order
The "safer at home" emergency order just announced by Los Angeles County and the cities within its borders at a Thursday evening news conference requires all indoor malls, shopping centers, playgrounds and nonessential retail businesses to close effective midnight tonight through at least April 19.
Allowed to operate - as long as they observe proper social-distancing guidelines and do not include more than 10 people in one place - are a list of essential services including city and county government services, grocery stores, hardware stores and, wait for it, cannabis dispensaries.

Canadian Cannabis Firms Ask For Help After Thousands Of Jobs Lost
Cannabis companies are calling on Ottawa to provide immediate help for the industry, hurt by the steps taken to slow the spread of COVID-19.
About 71 cannabis firms and organizations have written a letter to Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Industry Minister Navdeep Bains asking for their companies to get access to wage subsidies being made available to small businesses.

Coronavirus Crisis Shows Marijuana Is 'Essential' And Mainstream
Never has it been more clear than during the current COVID-19 pandemic that marijuana has arrived at the forefront of mainstream American society.
In state after state, governors and public health officials are deeming cannabis businesses "essential" operations that can stay open amid coronavirus-related forced closures and stay-at-home mandates. People might not be able to go bowling or see a movie in theaters, but they can still stock up on marijuana.

Coronavirus could accelerate US cannabis legalization
As the economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic piles up, U.S. cities and states are set to face significant lost revenue given the loss of business activity.
But, as DataTrek Research's Jessica Rabe writes in a note, "there's a simple and effective solution for states and cities to help cover their huge budget shortfalls after the COVID-19 pandemic subsides: legalize recreational sales of marijuana."
New York, the epicenter of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., might see a revenue drop of $4 billion to $7 billion compared to what it was expecting, according to the state comptroller. With a budget of $87.9 billion, that's significant.



APRIL 2020  

After 4-year delay, DEA will review dozens of requests to grow marijuana for research
After nearly 4 years of what some researchers saw as foot dragging, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has announced it will evaluate 37 applications to grow marijuana for medical research and proposed new rules for the prospective growers that outline how the cannabis-growing program would work.

Cannabis stores in Ontario no longer deemed essential, will close this weekend
Cannabis stores across Ontario will have to close as of Saturday night after the provincial government removed them from their list of essential businesses.
Many non-essential businesses in the province have been closed under government order since March 24, but cannabis and liquor stores have remained open.
At the time the initial list of what would remain open and what would have to close during the COVID-19 pandemic, Ontario Premier Doug Ford said mental health and addiction experts voiced that is was "absolutely critical" to keep these stores open.

Legal recreational use of marijuana backed by more than half of Kiwis
The majority of people would now vote to legalise recreational cannabis use, a new poll paid for by a medicinal cannabis research company indicates.
The survey of just under 2000 people conducted by Horizon Research found 54 per cent would vote "yes" in the upcoming referendum on legalising recreational cannabis use.

I grew up in an underground cannabis bakery during the AIDS epidemic. Yes, it is essential medicine
During the '70s, my family baked and delivered more than 10,000 marijuana brownies per month in San Francisco. My mom dealt brownies out of my stroller in the Castro district, with weekly stops at Harvey Milk's campaign headquarters and the home of the singer Sylvester. Sticky Fingers Brownies began as party favors at the height of disco extravagance and then changed along with the city. Deliveries continued through the depths of the AIDS crisis and the dawn of medical marijuana.

Legal cannabis resulted in a decrease in opioid prescriptions
A new study analyzed a database of 1.5 billion people with opioid prescriptions between 2011 and 2018. The publishing date was on Dec. 14 2019 in Journal of Health Economics. The study concluded that, there were reductions of 11.8 percent and 4.2 percent of opioid prescription.
Another study, which examined 2011 to 2016 Medicaid data had similar conclusion. "In this population-based, cross-sectional study using the all-capture Medicaid prescription data for 2011 to 2016, medical marijuana laws and adult-use marijuana laws were associated with lower opioid prescribing rates (5.88% and 6.38% lower, respectively)." In addition, the study from December examines all type of prescriptions not only the Medicaid. The conclusion, that Legal cannabis resulted in opioid prescription decrease, is similar to previous studies.

Positive data from 1st clinical trial into cannabis for chronic insomnia
Australian researchers are reporting the initial results from the world;s first placebo-controlled clinical trial testing the efficacy of medicinal cannabis in treating chronic insomnia. The results reveal statistically significant, and dose responsive, improvements to sleep quality using a novel cannabinoid formulation.

Virginia just decriminalized marijuana
On Sunday, Gov. Ralph Northam (D) announced he approved a bill that will eliminate jail time for simple marijuana possession, leaving a civil penalty with a fine in place. Northam previously said decriminalization was a priority for him, and the newly elected Democratic-controlled legislature soon followed his lead.

Boom times for cannabis businesses as Californians, in a pandemic fog, isolate indoors
If there's one business the coronavirus has kissed with fortune, it's weed. "Business is up, oh, about one hundred percent," said Ryan Moran, operations manager for the Flower Co., a marijuana distributor in Arcata - a small college town, seated on Humboldt Bay, just north of Eureka.
Moran, who hails from New Jersey, said his company provides next-day delivery for communities in the San Francisco Bay Area, and as of Friday, he expected to start next-day service for Los Angeles, too.

FDA Declares Cannabis Drug Epidiolex No Longer A Controlled Substance
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) confirmed that the GW Pharmaceuticals plc (Nasdaq: GWPH) cannabidiol drug Epidiolex is no longer subject to the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). The DEA's letter means that all federal controlled-substance restrictions have been removed for Epidiolex. This change takes effect immediately.
The stock was rising over 3% to lately trade at $85.06 on the news. This further lifts the stock from its 52-week low of $67.98.

Future of Psychedelics - An interactive virtual conference with the top minds in psychedelics Future of Psychedelics, an innovative virtual celebration for psychedelic investors, researchers, the general public and media. You will find renowned psychedelic experts and learn about the latest developments and trends in psychedelic medicine.

Allowing marijuana businesses to open bank accounts could be part of coronavirus stimulus
Legislation allowing banks to provide credit cards and checking accounts to legal cannabis businesses has been stalled in the Senate. But members of Congress are looking to add its provisions to the next coronavirus stimulus bill, NJ Cannabis Insider has learned.

Lebanon becomes first Arab country to legalise cannabis farming for medical use in bid to beat economic crisis
Lebanon has become the first Arab country to legalise cannabis farming for medical and industrial purposes - a move that could generate lucrative exports and foreign currency as the country struggles to cope with a financial crisis.
Although growing the plant was previously illegal, cannabis has long been farmed openly in the fertile and impoverished Bekaa Valley. According to the United Nations, the country is the world's third largest supplier of cannabis resin, or hashish, after Morocco and Afghanistan.

Why Joe Biden could swing votes by campaigning to legalize marijuana
Today is 4/20, the holiday for marijuana enthusiasts around the world.
More Americans are likely to celebrate 4/20 today than ever before. Cannabis sales reportedly skyrocketed just before the coronavirus pandemic began locking down most of the country. One survey similarly showed that marijuana use reached records heights last month.
Marijuana has even become a winning political issue, with a remarkable rise in public support for legalization over the past two decades. Two-thirds of Americans back legal recreational use, up from one-third 20 years ago.

Trials Using Cannabis to Fight COVID-19 Launched in Israel
With nearly 2.5 million confirmed cases and more than 160,000 deaths from the coronavirus, the race is on for a treatment that can fight the deadly respiratory infection that has beguiled doctors worldwide. In this pandemic arms race a number of Israeli researcher labs are launching trials and treatments to treat COVID-19 - and three eye-catching ones are based on cannabis.


MAY 2020  
 Stay Safe - Wash Hands Frequently With Soap - Follow stay-at-home & Social Distancing Requirements

Southern Alberta researchers say medical cannabis could help fight COVID-19
Researchers at the University of Lethbridge say while clinical trials still need to be done, data they've been collecting over the past four years shows promise that some cannabis extracts may help in the prevention and treatment of COVID-19.
Olga and Igor Kovalchuk have been working with cannabis since 2015, using varieties from around the world to create new hybrids and develop extracts that demonstrate certain therapeutic properties.

New Research Suggests That Marijuana May Reverse Aging in the Brain
The image of the stereotypical young pot smoker is someone who is dazed, confused, muddled with no motivation to do much of anything. Marijuana has long been known for its psychoactive effects, which can include short term memory loss, problems with attention and concentration and general cognitive impairment.
But now research indicates that the active compound in marijuana may affect older users differently than younger ones. As opposed to leading to learning impairment, memory problems and a general cognitive deficit, the drug may actually reverse age-related cognitive declines in executive functioning.

Ontario's legal pot stores celebrate one year in business - but most cannabis users are still buying illegally
Canada's black market of pot is still riding rampant over licensed retailers, a year into what many say continues to be a slow rollout of brick-and-mortar stores in Ontario and regulatory challenges.
Retail stores in Ontario sold approximately $200 million in recreational pot last year, accounting for the lion's share of just under $300 million in estimated Ontario Cannabis Store recreational sales, said Cheri Mara, chief commercial officer for the OCS. That's far below the estimated $2.9-billion provincial market value.

A secret memo released as part of a recent lawsuit demonstrates how the Trump Administration has quietly blocked marijuana research in the United States.
Lawmakers like Joe Biden have lamented not enough marijuana research exists to end federal prohibition, but scientists have just as often lamented tight regulations from the federal government inhibits legitimate research from occurring.
Since 1968, scientists pursuing marijuana research have had to obtain their cannabis from a 12-acre farm located at the University of Mississippi. The Obama Administration signed legislation late in 2016 that would expand the number of facilities growing marijuana for research, but the Drug Enforcement Agency hasn't granted any licenses four years later.
Thanks to a lawsuit spearheaded by the Scottsdale Research Institute (SRI) and cannabis researcher Sue Sisley, the public now understands why. A 2018 secret memo, released as part of the lawsuit settled, reveals the Trump Administration believes the nearly 50-year-old program in Mississippi has always been illegal. In fact, the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) suggest the restrictions around marijuana research aren't harsh enough.

Cannabis Might Block COVID-19 Infection, Study Shows
While smoking weed definitely won't make you coronavirus-proof, Canadian scientists at the University of Lethbridge have some promising results that might be counted as preliminary evidence that cannabis may block COVID-19 infection.
The study's aim was to find ways to hinder the COVID-19 from finding a host in the lungs, intestines, and oral cavity. The researchers have studied over 400 cannabis strains, and now, they are concentrating on about a dozen they say have the most potential to help prevent the virus.

Could The Coronavirus Compel The US Government To Legalize Cannabis?
Attitudes are changing on cannabis, and as more states legalize marijuana, whether for medical or recreational purposes, it's clear that it's not a matter of if marijuana will be legalized in the U.S., only when. And while COVID-19 may stall the progress that individual states have been making on legalizing pot, the pandemic could help push forward the prospect of legalizing pot federally. Here's why legalization could take place sooner than expected.

The Word 'Cannabis' Appears More Than 'Job' in the Democrats' New Stimulus Bill
Republicans are not happy with the marijuana provisions included in the $3 trillion coronavirus bill introduced by House Democrats this week, calling out lawmakers for using the word cannabis more than job in the economic relief package.
"The bold new policy from Washington Democrats that will kick coronavirus to the curb and save American families from this crisis - here it is, here it is: new annual studies on diversity and inclusion within the cannabis industry," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday during a floor speech.

What California's Best Pot Farmers Are Growing for Summer 2020
It's that time of year when many of the world's best cannabis farmers are in full prep for summer. We reached out to them and asked what strains they are most excited to grow. Here is what they told us.

Virginia governor signs bill decriminalizing marijuana
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam signed legislation on Thursday that decriminalizes marijuana possession, joining a majority of states that have ceased treating the drug as a criminal offense.
The new law, which goes into effect July 1, is the latest progressive action taken by state Democrats since taking full control of Virginia's government in November for the first time in more than two decades.

Oregon legal marijuana sales hit $89 million in April
April 2020 now stands as the month with the largest record of legal marijuana sales, which rose to 45 percent compared to 2019 sales. Cannabis proponents say the COVID-19 pandemic and the push for legalization could be the catalyst. So far, there has been a universal push for federal marijuana legalization across the US, with supporters saying it would generate tax revenue, create employment, and boost the economy.

Some Pa. Republicans are open to legalizing marijuana after coronavirus blew a hole in the budget: 'It's inevitable'
There's a gaping budget hole caused by an economy in tatters.
There's growing voter support and some assurance that the issue is no longer political poison. And there are tax windfalls, potentially huge revenues to be gleaned, if a bill can win bipartisan support in Harrisburg.
For those reasons, some Republican lawmakers in Pennsylvania are coming around - if slowly - to the idea of legalizing marijuana for adult recreational use.

Legal cannabis hemp oil effectively treats chronic neuropathic pain
Researchers examine the effectiveness of consuming hemp oil extracted from the whole Cannabis plant using a chronic neuropathic pain animal model. Researchers at The University of New Mexico (UNM) showed that legal Cannabis hemp oil reduced mechanical pain sensitivity 10-fold for several hours in mice with chronic post-operative neuropathic pain.

How Federal Marijuana Policy Is Pushing Veterans into the Black Market
Alex is 34 and lives outside of Sacramento. Like many Californians, he vapes marijuana concentrate for a variety of health problems such as anxiety. But even though he lives within a half-hour drive of a legal dispensary, Alex purchases his cannabis on what he likes to call the "duty-free" market. About once a month, he drives an hour to an acquaintance's house to purchase about an ounce of concentrate, for about half of what he would pay at a state-certified recreational dispensary.

Cannabis Legalization Is Key To Economic Recovery, Much Like Ending Alcohol Prohibition Helped Us Out Of The Great Depression
Our nation is in the midst of the greatest crisis in generations, with the Covid-19 pandemic impacting Americans' physical and emotional well-being, while plummeting the nation's economy into the worst economic downturn in our lifetimes. As the country begins what is likely to be a slow climb out of economic morass, federal, state, and local governments will be looking for new sources of revenue to replenish dwindling budgets and provide jobs to millions of Americans who find themselves out of work.

CBD Slows Growth of Brain Cancer Cells in a Petri Dish
Cannabidiol (CBD) - the cannabis compound that isn't psychoactive - has earned a reputation as something of a cure-all, supposedly capable of treating everything from anxiety to acne.
While many of those claims are anecdotal - or made by companies hoping to sell consumers on CBD-infused everything - a recently published study suggests that the compound might deserve legitimate consideration as part of a new cancer treatment.
But it's a long road from Petri dishes to cancer therapy, and CBD has barely started.

'Cannabis burned during worship' by ancient Israelites - study Ancient Israelites burned cannabis as part of their religious rituals, an archaeological study has found.
A well-preserved substance found in a 2,700-year-old temple in Tel Arad has been identified as cannabis, including its psychoactive compound THC.
Researchers concluded that cannabis may have been burned in order to induce a high among worshipers. This is the first evidence of psychotropic drugs being used in early Jewish worship, Israeli media report.


JUNE 2020  

Stay Safe - Wash Hands Frequently With Soap - Follow stay-at-home & Social Distancing Guidelenes - Wear a mask when outside your home

Aleafia Health's FoliEdge Academy Partners with Seneca to Provide Cannabis Education Programming
Aleafia Health Inc.'s (TSX: ALEF, OTC: ALEAF, FRA: ARAH) ("Aleafia Health" or the "Company") cannabis education division, FoliEdge Academy Inc., has entered into a definitive Educational Products Distribution Agreement with Seneca to develop and deliver new courses and programs focused on aspects of the cannabis industry in Canada.
There is a critical demand for all levels of cannabis education, from beginner survey courses to in-depth post-graduate certificate courses for professionals in production, medical and policy roles.

Canopy Growth CEO says new data on cannabis beverages show they can be bigger than hard seltzer
The world's largest cannabis company Canopy Growth (CGC) saw shares fall another 5% Monday after cratering 20% following Friday's fourth-quarter results, which disappointed against even its own revenue guidance.
Analysts at Stifel Nicolaus cut Canopy to a Sell rating while Morningstar maintained its "No moat" rating on the Ontario-based cannabis giant, indicating an unlikely differentiation from an already struggling cannabis sector, while conceding there remains long-term upside potential if the company can convert customers from the illegal black market.

Using Cannabis While Pregnant Does Not Impair Children's Cognition, Decades Of Studies Suggest
Across the US, children and their parents routinely face separation and other forms of punishment due to legal and medical policies around prenatal cannabis exposure, and the notion that cannabis use during pregnancy may harm children's development.
But according to a review of research to date, there's no evidence to support this belief about cannabis, nor the inarguably harmful policies which rely on it. After nearly six years of comparing study results, researchers at Columbia University, the New York State Psychiatric Institute, and Swinburne University have found that prenatal cannabis exposure does not lead to cognitive impairment in children, based on data from decades worth of studies on this issue.

Canada's 'Croptober' looms as outdoor pot production set to soar
A different sea of green will greet Canadian farm fields this year as licensed producers begin planting their cannabis outdoors, a move that could exacerbate an existing glut in the market and potentially cause further industry writedowns.
Health Canada said that about 450 acres of land were used for outdoor cannabis cultivation last year, compared with roughly 350 acres grown indoors. This year, 46 licensed producers can grow cannabis outdoors, almost double the number of licensees from last year.

The 4 Likeliest States to Legalize Marijuana in November
Despite its numerous growing pains over the past year and change, marijuana remains one of the fastest expanding industries on the planet. After logging $10.9 billion in legal worldwide sales in 2018, Wall Street has global pot sales hitting anywhere from $50 billion to $200 billion by 2030.
Although cannabis is a global growth story, there's no question that the U.S. is at the center of this expansion. The United States is already responsible for the lion's share of legal weed sales, in spite of the fact that marijuana remains a Schedule I (i.e., illicit) substance at the federal level. Even with presidential candidates Joe Biden (D) and Donald Trump (R) unlikely to alter this classification, that's not going to stop legalization momentum at the state level.

Oregon monthly cannabis sales crack $100M for first time
Oregon cannabis sales in May continued a surge that began as Covid-19 restrictions unfolded, setting a record for the third straight month and topping $100 million for the first time.
The $103 million May total for recreational and medical sales was a whopping $38.5 million more than in the same month in 2019, a 60 percent increase, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission said late Thursday.

Scientists: Super High Potency Weed Doesn't Really Get You Higher
Bad news for people buying super-potent, high-end weed: it doesn't actually seem to make you any higher than the cheap stuff.
A team of scientists from the University of Colorado, Boulder - where else - tested how both physical and cognitive impairment varies based on THC blood concentration, and found that, well, it doesn't. Rather, it seems that once you're high, you're high, according to research published Wednesday in the journal JAMA Psychiatry.

William Barr inappropriately targeted marijuana industry with antitrust probes: DOJ whistleblower
Attorney General William Barr improperly targeted marijuana companies with anti-trust investigations, because he "did not like" the nature of their business, a career Department of Justice official plans to testify to Congress on Wednesday.
John Elias, a senior official at the department's antitrust division, plans to tell the House Judiciary Committee that his division was "forced for political reasons to pursue unjustified investigations of the fledgling legal marijuana industry," The New York Times reported.

Cannabis-infused treatment for Covid-19 under development
InnoCan Pharma Israel and Tel Aviv University tech-transfer companyRamot are collaborating to develop a new exosome-based technology that targets the Covid-19 coronavirus and other types of lung inflammation.
"CBD-loaded exosomes may hold the potential to provide a highly synergistic effect of anti-inflammatory properties and help in the recovery of infected lung cells," the company announced.

Thank Earlier LGBTQ+ Activists for the Marijuana Wins We Enjoy Today
This month, as we celebrate Pride, it's important to remember our roots. These include the LGBTQ+ leaders who laid the groundwork for many of the drug policy wins we enjoy today, and those for which we are still fighting. One that might come as a surprise is marijuana legalization.
In fact, some of the earliest known marijuana victories were led by LGBTQ+ activists, particularly those of color, as a way to provide healing and solace to the many within our community that lay dying, without any known cure or long-term treatment of HIV/AIDS.

California cities begin embracing cannabis in desperate search for cash
California local governments scrambling to find tax revenues during the coronavirus pandemic are turning toward an industry they had considered taboo until now: cannabis.
It has been almost four years since voters legalized recreational marijuana in California, and nearly 70 percent of cities and counties have yet to embrace pot businesses because they see regulatory problems or have concerns about public safety and negative publicity.
But some, facing insurmountable budget gaps as unemployment rises to its worst level since the Great Depression, would now rather open their doors to cannabis than lay off more workers or cut services. So far, a handful of cities have begun developing cannabis tax measures for the November ballot since voter approval is required to add local taxes.


JULY 2020  

Stay Safe - Wash Hands Frequently With Soap - Follow stay-at-home & Social Distancing Guidelines - Wear a mask when outside your home

'Lazy Stoner' Stereotype Smashed By Study Finding Marijuana Consumers Exercise More
Does marijuana ruin an exercise routine? You might be surprised. A new study of older Americans found that cannabis consumers tended to do more formal exercise and engage in more physical activities than non-consumers during the course of a four-month trial.
While authors cautioned the findings are preliminary, they contribute to a growing body of evidence challenging the lazy-stoner stereotype.
"Compared to older adult nonusers," says the study, out of the University of Colorado at Boulder, "older adult cannabis users had lower [body mass index] at the beginning of an exercise intervention study, engaged in more weekly exercise days during the intervention, and were engaging in more exercise-related activities at the conclusion of the intervention."

First clinical evidence: Cannabis microdoses relieve pain
Israeli med-tech company Syqe Medical has conducted the first clinical trial to demonstrate that extremely low and precise doses of inhaled THC - the principal psychoactive constituent of cannabis - can effectively relieve pain, while avoiding the common side effects associated with cannabis use.
The study, published in the European Journal of Pain, is the first scientific confirmation that microdosing - using extremely low doses of active drug compounds to treat various conditions - works with cannabis.

The Surprising Reason the U.S. May Be Reluctant to Legalize Marijuana
Amid the chaos of 2020, which has included a stock market crash, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, and even some hoopla about the arrival of murder hornets, there's still the realization that this is an election year. In a little over four months, Americans across the country will be heading to the polls or mailing in their ballots to determine who'll lead the U.S. for the next four years.
Among the many issues that'll be getting more of a spotlight than in year's past this election is marijuana. In each of the last two years, Gallup's national poll has found that a record-tying 66% of respondents favor legalization. Other polls, while differing in the nominal support value, also showing overwhelming and clear evidence that the American public favors legalization.

Why Won't Democrats Just Come Out for Legalizing Marijuana?
Some political issues are hard to wrestle with. Some are easy. Legalizing marijuana is easy.
A Pew Research Center survey found last fall that Americans back legalization by a 67-32 margin. The numbers spike among Democrats, 78 percent of whom favor ending this form of prohibition. But there's also majority support - 55 percent - among Republicans. Among voters under age 30, support for legalization is sky-high.

If Cannabis Is "A Potential Way To Prevent COVID-19" Then Why Is Trump Blocking Research?
Forbes is reporting, "two Canadian researchers think that a special strain of cannabis might potentially be a valuable tool in the fight against COVID-19." (Source: April issue of the online medical journal Preprints)
First, it is important to note that it would be very difficult to do such research in the US because the Federal government continues to block research on cannabis.
Second, the published information is limited because the research is based on proprietary strains of cannabis, plus the researchers do not yet seem certain about which ingredients and which ratios are key.

STUDY: In Search of Preventative Strategies: Novel Anti-Inflammatory High-CBD Cannabis Sativa Extracts Modulate ACE2 Expression in COVID-19 Gateway Tissues
Abstract - With the rapidly growing pandemic of COVID-19 caused by the new and challenging to treat zoonotic SARS-CoV2 coronavirus, there is an urgent need for new therapies and prevention strategies that can help curtail disease spread and reduce mortality. Inhibition of viral entry and thereby spread constitute plausible therapeutic avenues. Similar to other respiratory pathogens, SARS-CoV2 is transmitted through respiratory droplets, with potential for aerosol and contact spread.

Cannabis is the modern perfume high
Two unique new perfumes containing CBD oil are taking the world of fragrance by storm! Launched earlier this year by international luxury perfume house Fragrance Du Bois and with an olfactory signature that is unique to perfumery, these new creations are sexy, intoxicating and utterly addictive.

Canopy Growth Corp. Targets New Market: Company Emerges with Cannabis Drinks
Canopy Growth Corporation firmly believes that the secret to attract new cannabis consumers is to get it in a can. Canopy Growth Corp. brings a cannabis drink to the market. This emerging marijuana drink is a part of the company's strategy to attract new cannabis consumers. The company plans to substitute alcoholic beverages by launching this cannabis drink in the market.
According to the president and CEO of Supreme Cannabis, John Fowler, these cannabis drinks are a representation of fundamentally different business theory.

Legal cannabis sales in Colorado reach all-time high in May
Cannabis sales in Colorado set a new monthly record in May, reaching their highest level since broad legalization in 2014.
Dispensaries sold over $192 million worth of cannabis products that month, according to data from the state Department of Revenue's Marijuana Enforcement Division compiled by The Denver Post. That figure is up about 29% from April and 32% from May 2019.

It's finally official, more Aussies want legal cannabis than oppose it
The tides have turned. The table's been flipped. The rabbit's escaped the talons. And the cannabis, oh it's growing. For the first time in likely over a century, more Australian's support the legalisation of cannabis than oppose it.
Australian's are showing their progressiveness as the recent 2019 National Drug Strategy Household Survey, had its findings released this week by the AIHW. Boy oh boy, do they excite us.

National Drug Strategy Household Survey 2019 (Australia) -

Argentina To Allow Cannabis Sales In Pharmacies And Home Cultivation
Argentina's Ministry of Health will make definitive changes to the country's medical marijuana law. On Wednesday, the Health Minister met with key actors to close details on a draft regulation that will allow for home cultivation of cannabis and the production of oils and topicals by local pharmacies.
The measure will also guarantee access to medical cannabis to all patients free of charge, regardless of their health coverage, reported local news site Infobae.

More Potent Than CBD, THC: Dr. Raphael Mechoulam Explains His Latest Discovery
Professor Raphael Mechoulam, also known as the "father of cannabis research," revealed his latest discovery, cannabidiolic acid methyl ester (EPM301), only a few months ago. The introduction of this new, patented compound (synthetic, fully stable acid-based cannabinoid molecules) caused a wave of excitement around the future of medicinal cannabis.
The compound in question was presented to the world in partnership with EPM, a global biotechnology company based in the U.S. that aims to bridge the gap between the cannabis and pharmaceutical industries.

Medicinal cannabis can kill or inhibit cancer cells, tests show
Laboratory tests conducted at the University of Newcastle and Hunter Medical Research Institute have shown that a modified form of medicinal cannabis can kill or inhibit cancer cells without impacting normal cells, revealing its potential as a treatment rather than simply a relief medication. Dr Matt Dun tells Paul Turton about the research.

NIST to Help Labs Achieve Accurate THC, CBD Measurements
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has launched a program to help laboratories accurately measure key chemical compounds in marijuana, hemp and other cannabis products including oils, edibles, tinctures and balms. The program aims to increase accuracy in product labeling and help forensic laboratories distinguish between hemp, which is legal in all states, and marijuana, which is not.
As part of the Cannabis Quality Assurance (CannaQAP) program, NIST will send hemp oil samples to participating labs, which will then measure the concentration of various compounds and report back to NIST. Future exercises will involve plant material.

COMMENTARY: Does cannabis affect your memory?
Cannabis use has long been associated with memory loss. But until now, this notion was largely anecdotal.
As researchers begin to look into cannabis and the effect that it has on human health, they're beginning to better understand the effect it has on the human brain - and whether cannabis really does impair memory.
Memory is divided into both short-term and long-term memory. Short-term memory is where immediate events are temporarily stored, whereas long-term memory is where information is stored indefinitely.

Cannabis shows potential for mitigating sickle cell disease pain
Cannabis appears to be a safe and potentially effective treatment for the chronic pain that afflicts people with sickle cell disease, according to a new clinical trial co-led by University of California, Irvine researcher Kalpna Gupta and Dr. Donald Abrams of UC San Francisco. The findings appear in JAMA Network Open.

STUDY: Effect of Inhaled Cannabis for Pain in Adults With Sickle Cell Disease -



AUGUST 2020  

Stay Safe - Wash Hands Frequently With Soap - Follow stay-at-home & Social Distancing Guidelines - Wear a mask when outside your home

House bill blocks feds from enforcing marijuana ban in states that legalized recreational, medical weed
Legislation to fund much of the federal government in the new year passed the House Friday after lawmakers first voted to prevent the Justice Department from enforcing the federal ban on marijuana in states that have legalized the drug.
The vote was 217-197, largely along party lines. The Senate is drafting its own spending bill and then the two versions must be reconciled.

Women Who Use Marijuana More Often Have Better Sex, Study Says
Cannabis use has increased in the last decade, and the impact of cannabis on female sexual function remains unclear.

Scientists modified a strain of cannabis to kill cancer cells
It's well-documented that chemical compounds found in cannabis, especially cannabidiol (CBD), are effective at treating the symptoms of many forms of cancer. But now there's evidence that it could potentially cure the disease by attacking cancer cells.
Cancer researcher Matt Dun, of the University of Newcastle in Australia, recently finished a three-year long study indicating a specific modified strain of cannabis is destructive to certain types of cancer cells while remaining harmless to the human body's own cells.

Marijuana compound CBD can help drugs fight off antibiotic-resistant bacteria
Although modern medicine keeps advancing, scientists are facing greater threats to public health each year. Among these threats is the growing list of bacteria strains resistant to antibiotics. Looking at new ways of fighting these germs, researchers in Denmark say the answer may be in cannabis. Their study finds cannabidiol (CBD), an active ingredient in marijuana, boosts the power of antibiotics, killing harmful bacteria.

Marijuana growers in Connecticut expand to keep up with patients enduring chronic pain
Marijuana growers in Connecticut are adding space to boost production and accommodate an expanding market for patients afflicted by chronic pain.
CTPharma, a Portland-based biotech company, paid $7.5 million for a 216,532 square foot building in Rocky Hill formerly used by McKesson Corp., a pharmaceutical company. It expects to spend "multiple that number to get it up and running," Chief Operating Officer Rino Ferrarese said.

Mass. regulators fine Revolutionary Clinics $120,000 for selling tainted marijuana vapes
A Fitchburg marijuana company, Revolutionary Clinics, will pay Massachusetts $120,000 to settle charges it sold vaporizers containing excessive levels of ethanol to six other dispensaries, which then sold dozens of the tainted devices to consumers.
The Cannabis Control Commission voted unanimously Thursday to approve the fine and impose a four-month probation for the company over various violations related to the wholesale vape transactions, which occurred from December 2018 to early 2019.

Weed is not good for your heart, studies say
You may love smoking weed, but it does not love your heart, according to the American Heart Association's new scientific statement on marijuana.
"The American Heart Association recommends that people not smoke or vape any substance, including cannabis products, because of the potential harm to the heart, lungs and blood vessels," said Dr. Rose Marie Robertson, the deputy chief science and medical officer for the American Heart Association, in a statement.

Illinois Marijuana Sales Break Another Record, With $61 Million Sold In July
While many businesses have been struggling to survive during the pandemic, Illinois pot dispensaries have continued to thrive, setting another sales record in July.
The $61 million in recreational marijuana sales last month represented a 28% increase over June, when Illinois had $47.6 million in sales, according to the Illinois Department of Professional and Financial Regulation. Those figures do not include medical marijuana sales.

The pandemic is eating away at the illicit marijuana market
The legal marijuana industry has spent years battling illegal sellers who have eaten away at its market share and undercut its prices.
But the coronavirus has proven to be a boon for legal pot shops, as customers fear the risks associated with inhaling questionable products and are nervous about letting sellers into their homes.

Adolescent treatment admissions for cannabis use disorder fell in Washington and Colorado after legalization
The legalization of recreational cannabis in Colorado and Washington state was not associated with increases in adolescent treatment admissions for the drug, according to new research published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence.
"The growth of marijuana legalization represents a dramatic change in drug policy from previous decades. It's important to understand the public health implications, particularly for adolescents, for whom frequent marijuana use may be particularly harmful," said study author Jeremy Mennis, a professor of geography and urban studies at Temple University.

Marijuana Legalization Can Stay on Arizona Ballot, State Supreme Court Rules
The Arizona Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that voters will get to decide the future of the Smart & Safe Arizona initiative to legalize cannabis.
The citizens' initiative now known as Proposition 207 submitted 420,000 signatures supporting the measure on July 1. That brought a challenge by Arizonans for Health and Public Safety (AZHPS), which tried to keep it off the November ballot.

Parents of UK toddler with severe epilepsy seek legal review of cannabis oil guidelines
The parents of a toddler with severe epilepsy are seeking a landmark judicial review of rigid guidelines that effectively prevent the NHS from prescribing medical cannabis oil, a substance that they say has allowed their son to live a much healthier life, to thousands of sick children.
Charlie Hughes, 3, has a rare form of epilepsy called West syndrome, which is resistant to most forms of treatment and can cause him to have up to 120 seizures a day, according to his parents, Alison and Matt Hughes. With regular full extract cannabis oil, however, he experiences no more than 20 less severe seizures a day.



 Stay Safe - Wash Hands Frequently With Soap - Follow stay-at-home & Social Distancing Guidelines - Wear a mask when outside your home

Republicans rip Democrats' priorities after vote scheduled on bill to decriminalize marijuana
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer announced that the House will consider the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment, and Expungement Act the week of Sept 21, prompting criticism from Republicans.
The measure would decriminalize marijuana use at the federal level, although the bill stands no chance of becoming law facing a Republican firewall in the Senate and a GOP president in the White House.

Cannabis Food Market Could Be Worth Nearly $7b by 2024
The global cannabis and CBD foods market could grow to as much as $6.56 billion as early as 2024, according to a new report from Prohibition Partners.
Entitled "The Impact Series: Disrupting Food," the report asserts that 27% of all consumers in the cannabis and CBD foods market first tried these products within the past six months, and that the market itself could be worth $2.57 billion by the end of 2020.

Drone Makes It Rain Weed in Tel Aviv
A drone over Tel Aviv's Rabin Square dropped hundreds of bags of weed on Thursday, setting off a mad scramble by onlookers to stock up, the Jerusalem Post reported.
According to the Post, the giveaway was orchestrated by a Telegram group called Green Drone that advocates for the legalization of marijuana throughout Israel. (Medical marijuana is legal in Israel and a major export as of May; the Ministry of Security partially decriminalized recreational marijuana use in 2017 but full legalization efforts are still being negotiated.) The group told followers on Telegram that this was just the start of an ongoing "rain of cannabis."

The Legal Cannabis Industry Is Creating A New Workforce Amidst The Pandemic
Despite being a nascent and still federally illegal operation, most states deemed cannabis companies and ancillary services as essential businesses when COVID-19 hit the U.S. Since that time, consumer demand has sustained - if not grown - and patients have been able to continue getting their medicine. Now, the legal cannabis industry is looking towards the future and "new normal" with expanding, legitimized workforces that have kept the industry alive during a national economic downturn.

In "landmark decision", Pakistan approves industrial use of cannabis and hemp Pakistan has approved the domestication and commercialisation of medicinal and industrial cannabis and hemp at a Herbal Medicine Park in Jhelum, minister for science and technology Fawad Chaudhry tweeted.
Chaudhry called it a landmark decision that will help Pakistan enter the billion-dollar Cannabidiol (CBD) market.

One cure for an ailing American economy: Legalize cannabis
America's next president will face an unprecedented array of challenges, chief among them an economy in ruins and an ugly social divide.
Having served in government for nearly three decades, including as Senate majority leader, I know that there's no silver bullet that can magically solve all of these problems. However, I've also learned that progress comes from unexpected places and that states often see the future before the federal government.

How does cannabis get you high?
Have you ever looked at your hands? I mean really looked at your hands? You might think you have, but as the above classic Doonesbury cartoon implies, people who are high on cannabis may perceive mundane objects to be far more fascinating than usual.
How is it that a plant that first emerged on what's now the Tibetan Plateau can change humans' perception of reality? The secret lies in a class of compounds called cannabinoids. While cannabis plants are known to produce at least 140 types of cannabinoids, there's one that's largely responsible for many of the effects of feeling high. It's called tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC.

There's No Link Between Legal Marijuana And Car-Related Pedestrian Deaths
When states legalize marijuana for adult-use or medicinal purposes, new research states it is not connected with increases in pedestrian fatality rates. Investigators at the University of Minnesota found that legalization was actually associated with declines in overall motor vehicle-related deaths.
The study, published in the journal Traffic Injury Prevention, analyzed traffic-related and fatal motor vehicle crashes in three legalized states - Oregon, Washington, and Colorado - as well as five control states, or where cannabis remained illegal. Records spanned between 1991 to 2018 and used crash data from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS).

Medical cannabis study for spinal injury pain wins NSW Health funding
Researchers at the University of Sydney have been awarded $1.7 million to research the chronic pain that commonly occurs after spinal cord injury.

Dr. Patricia Frye: Cannabis and its Role in the Treatment of Auto-Immune Diseases
Dr. Patricia Frye, an integrative expert in cannabis and its action in auto-immune disease, is called upon by patients whose bodies are seemingly attacking themselves. This bizarre action by our own defense mechanism is often misunderstood and poorly treated. In this UPG podcast, John Malanca discusses cannabis and treating diseases when the battleground is within ourselves.

Kamala Harris Pledged a Joe Biden Administration Would Decriminalize Marijuana
Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris said, if elected, she and presidential nominee Joe Biden would plan to decriminalize the use of marijuana. Harris outlined the proposal's broad strokes during a virtual roundtable she hosted with ABC through Facebook Live on September 14.
"Under a Biden-Harris administration, we will decriminalize the use of marijuana and automatically expunge all marijuana-use convictions, and end incarceration for drug use alone," Harris said.

Up in smoke? Hemp farmers fear EU decision
For European farm managers like Bernd Wortmann, growing cannabis is a careful calculation.
To be considered legal "hemp" and receive EU farm subsidies, their plants must possess less than 0.2 percent of the psychoactive ingredient tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). These plants also contain over 100 other chemicals, including cannabidiol (CBD) - which is non-psychoactive - that have been less clearly regulated.

Supreme Court Brief: Prohibition of Marijuana Is Unconstitutional Due to Feds' Own Statements and Actions
An amicus brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court this week challenges the constitutionality of marijuana's prohibited status under the decades-old legal regime.
Submitted by attorneys on behalf of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), the 36-page filing focuses on two-plus decades worth of state-based efforts to legalize marijuana in varying degrees. Specifically, the brief juxtaposes those successful reforms against the increasingly lax and permissive attitude of all three branches of the federal government viz. marijuana.

These states are voting on cannabis legalization this November
In 2016, the US election resulted in a green wave as cannabis legalization measures passed in eight out of nine states. Now, the industry and its supporters are hoping for another big win in November.
This year, voters in five states will decide whether to adopt either new medical or recreational cannabis laws - or, perhaps, both in the case of one state.
As it stands now, 33 states have legalized medical cannabis, and of those, 11 states have legalized cannabis for adult recreational use.

Delta-8-THC Promises to Get You High Without the Paranoia or Anxiety
Delta-9-THC, the main drug in cannabis plants that gets people high, can also be a potent medicine. It can treat extreme nausea and stimulate appetite, which is especially helpful for people who have HIV or are going through chemotherapy. A synthetic version of THC, called Dronabinol, has been used to treat these conditions since the 1980s, although some people prefer their THC to come from the plant itself.

Researchers Say THC From Cannabis May Treat ARDS, According To Study On Mice
Since Covid-19 first became a dangerous pandemic, many have wondered how cannabis use might factor into risk or healing for the deadly disease. While some immediately assumed cannabis was harmful, like tobacco, and others assumed it could cure or prevent the disease, scientists quickly began to explore the question.
Early research focused on the cannabinoid CBD as a potential treatment for cytokine storms and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) - a symptom in severe cases of Covid-19, which can lead to death. The results suggested that CBD may be an effective treatment, although human studies need to be conducted to confirm.

Medical Experts: It Is Time to Embrace Cannabis for Medicinal Use
20 months after cannabis-based products for medicinal use were legalized in the UK, attitudes towards using them are still highly skeptical, say researchers.
Attitudes towards cannabis products for medicinal use need to change with much greater appropriate use of such products to help alleviate patients' pain, suggests research published in the journal BMJ Open.
Researchers found that hundreds of thousands of UK patients were self-medicating with illegal cannabis-based products for medicinal use due to the fact that much of the medical and pharmacy professions have so far not embraced and prescribed legal cannabis-based products for their patients.

Pet Care is the Next Big CBD Opportunity in the U.S.
Cannabis is poised to be the next big opportunity in the U.S. consumer packaged goods (CPG) market. That opportunity, however, isn't limited to just human consumers. Given the love that consumers have for their pets, the cannabis opportunity, particularly with respect to cannabidiol (CBD), is just as big.
In 2018 alone, regulated adult use cannabis retailers in California, Colorado, Nevada and Washington rung up $9.4 million in pet product sales. And given the expected $2.25 billion-$2.75 billion in sales this year, we expect pet care to account for a notable portion of the growing total.

Hong Kong's first CBD cafe opens its doors to customers
Cannabis may be illegal in Hong Kong, but a new cafe is offering a range of food and drinks that contain parts of the cannabis plant without breaking any local laws.
The cafe, named Found, is the city's first to offer a range of coffees, biscuits, beer and fruit juices that contain cannabidiol, or CBD, a substance from the cannabis plant that is said to offer therapeutic effects without getting users intoxicated.



OCTOBER 2020   

Stay Safe - Wash Hands Frequently With Soap - Follow stay-at-home & Social Distancing Guidelines - Wear a mask when outside your home

250,000 Americans Work In Legal Cannabis And Jobs Are 'Growing'
About a quarter of a million people currently work part-time or full-time in the cannabis industry according to and those numbers are expected to grow significantly as marijuana legalization expands into new states and as nascent markets become more established. California, by dint of sheer size, as well as its long history of legal medical marijuana, represents the state with most cannabis jobs. Washington state and Colorado, the first two to legalize recreational use, are next on the list. Even more conservative states like Oklahoma are on track to add thousands of jobs in cannabis.

NZ's 'Say Nope To Dope' campaign using fear-mongering tactics against cannabis
New Zealanders are due to vote in a cannabis referendum on October 17. If the referendum returns a 'yes' majority, the incoming government may introduce the Cannabis Legislation and Control Bill for parliament to vote on, which legalises the use of recreational cannabis by adults.
Last week, News1 released a poll showing that 53% of the country does not support the legislation. In light of support dropping for cannabis legislation in New Zealand, the leader of the 'Say Nope To Dope' campaign, Aaron Ironside, interviewed with 4BC's John Stanley, telling listeners that legalisation will "opens Pandora's box".

Cannabis legalization: What has changed?
Interesting chart produced by Statistics Canada (division of the Canadian Governemnt)

The rise of Vietnam's cannabis empire in Australia
What do budding business-minded people do when they see an opportunity ripe for the taking? They take it. And that's exactly what some of Vietnam's largest and most sophisticated criminal networks have done with Australia's cannabis black market.
Over the past decade, hundreds of legal and illegal immigrants have been arrested for taking part in cultivating and supplying cannabis all across Australia.

Cannabis vape companies are experiencing a sales boom during the pandemic
The global pandemic is driving interest toward cannabis, and device makers are recording record sales. From startups to major players, several leading manufacturers told TechCrunch that their companies are seeing a boom in sales since the start of the crisis. Coupled with supply constraints, consumers are now seeing limited supply on some top models as makers try to keep up.
Some company CEOs see the pandemic driving consumer acceptance and pushing legalization at the national level. With legalization, new consumers enter the market, and companies such as Canopy Growth, PAX and Grenco Science look to benefit as makers of some of the best vaporizers on the market - that is if consumers can find them in stock.

THC Prevents Colon Cancer In Mice, Findings Suggest
People suffering from inflammatory bowel disease, which leads to chronic inflammation, are on the fast track to colon cancer, but prevention might begin with cannabis.
Young adults typically brush off the risk of colon cancer as an old man's disease, yet the illness is becoming increasingly common in people under the age of 50. Consider the tragic outcome of Black Panther's Chadwick Boseman, who died at age 43 after a heroic battle with colon cancer - despite his otherwise impeccable physique and health.

Maine adult-use marijuana stores prepare for opening-day crowds despite low supply
Thomas Winstanley remembers the long lines when adult-use marijuana stores opened in Massachusetts just before Thanksgiving 2018.
He would have expected the same when his company's South Portland store opens Friday, but the coronavirus is adding a twist this year.

USC researchers think THC may be able to treat COVID-19 patients Researchers at the University of South Carolina think they have found a way to treat COVID-19, and it involves THC -- the ingredient that gets people high when smoking marijuana.
Channel 9 reporter Glenn Counts spoke with those researchers on Wednesday and, to be clear, they said they are not encouraging people to smoke marijuana. They said one of the issues with the virus is that it can turn your immune system into a double-edge sword -- you want it to respond strongly if you get sick, but in some cases, the immune system goes completely haywire and that can be deadly.

Marijuana sales 'on fire' as demand spikes amid coronavirus outbreak
Toilet paper, hand sanitizer and food aren't the only things flying off the shelves amid the coronavirus scare in Southern California. Marijuana is the latest addition to the consumer stockpile.
Industry professionals are enjoying the spike in sales, which has prompted one proprietor to buy two used Priuses in the past week as deliveries soar. He said he is planning to buy three more in case his dispensaries are ordered shut and he has to transition his shop workers to drivers.
"If you asked me a week ago if I would be buying five or six used Priuses, I'd have said, 'Why would we be doing that?'" said Kyle Kazan, CEO of the Glass House Group, which operates four dispensaries across the state, including Bud and Bloom in Santa Ana, The Pottery in Los Angeles and The Farmacy in Santa Barbara and Berkeley.

Australia unprepared for over-the-counter medical cannabis sales
Professor Iain McGregor from the Lambert Initiative says it is time for Australia to have a mature approach to consumer access to safe and effective cannabinoid products without a prescription.
New analysis by the Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics at the University of Sydney shows that access to products containing cannabidiol in Australia is far more difficult than in many other countries.

Mexican Senate Will Vote to Federally Legalize Weed in the Next Two Weeks, Leader Says
The Mexican Senate will vote on a marijuana legalization bill at some point within the next two weeks, according to the leader of the governing body's majority party. The vote has been a long time coming and some observers think that, at last, this could finally be the deciding move.
Senate leader Ricardo Monreal of the MORENA party said the bill, which would enable private companies to sell marijuana to the public, is "likely to pass" the Senate before the end of October.
From there, the bill will move on to the Chamber of Deputies, a lower house of Congress, where insiders believe it is also likely to pass.

New Zealand health experts back reform of 'outdated' cannabis laws
Some of New Zealand's most experienced public health experts have thrown their support behind legalising marijuana, a week out from the country's general election.
In an editorial in the New Zealand Medical Journal, specialists from the fields of addiction treatment, public health, health promotion and epidemiology have urged New Zealanders to tick yes in the referendum, days after a poll showed the vote on a knife-edge.
The referendum is a "once-in-a-generation opportunity" to legalise cannabis, and promote health equality, the editorial said.

Irish Farmers Association push for legalization of medicinal cannabis
The Irish Farmers Association (IFA) is urging the Irish Government to introduce legislation that would allow farmers to produce medicinal cannabis. The IFA is seeking a meeting with the Department of Health to discuss the issue of potentially changing Irish law to allow the production of medicinal cannabis.

Cannabis Canada: Two years after Canada legalized pot and the country is awash with the stuff It's been two years since recreational cannabis was legalized in Canada and the country is filled to the brim with pot. Licensed producers have hundreds of thousands of kilograms stuck in vaults, while provincial distributors are stocking up on packaged products - all while Croptober looms and outdoor harvests begin. As we look back on the past two years of legalization, it's clear that Canada has a cannabis supply problem - one that has weighed on producers, big and small alike, which have had to write down and destroy billions of dollars in inventory and assets. There are now 507 producers Health Canada has licensed to grow cannabis legally, with roughly 60 of them selling into the recreational market. Meanwhile, more than 1,200 pot shops are open across Canada, with Ontario - the country's most populous province, opening 40 new stores each month.

Where recreational marijuana is legal, data show minimal impacts on teen use and traffic deaths
Since 2012, 11 states have legalized marijuana use for adults - which voters nationwide are considering on their ballots this year. Researchers are just beginning to understand the effects of those laws.
Colorado and Washington were the first states to legalize the drug, and California, the most populous state in the nation, followed them.

Trump campaign tells Mississippi group to stop saying he supports legalizing medical marijuana
President Trump's campaign in Mississippi told one marijuana advocacy group to stop saying the president supports a ballot measure that would legalize medical marijuana in the state.
Mississippians for Compassionate Care is the group promoting Initiative 65 to legalize medical marijuana across Mississippi, NBC News reported.
The group paid for a letter signed by notable Republicans in the state, and the outside of the envelope reads, "Join President Trump and 3 out of 4 Mississippi Republicans who support medical marijuana."

Mainers spent over $250K on cannabis during first weekend
Maine residents spent more than $250,000 on marijuana over the course of the first weekend of legal retail sales of the drug in the state.
Voters in the state chose to legalize adult use marijuana in 2016, but retail sales didn't become legal until this month. The Maine Office of Marijuana Policy said the long weekend that ended on Monday generated more than 6,400 transactions and $25,000 in sales tax.

The cannabis industry could be a big winner on Election Day
New Jersey is expected to approve a ballot initiative to legalize adult-use (aka recreational) marijuana on Election Day next month. Aside from stoking up the 61% of likely Garden State voters in favor of the measure, its passage is projected to generate up to $400 million in adult-use sales in its first year and $950 million by 2024, translating then to nearly $63 million in annual state tax revenue and an additional $19 million in local taxes, as estimated by Marijuana Business Daily. In an economy shattered by the coronavirus pandemic, legal weed looks like a great idea.
That may not be the only good news for legalization proponents after Nov. 3. They're hoping New Jersey's pro-pot vote will trigger a domino effect in neighboring states considering similar efforts. "Once New Jersey goes, it's going to set off an arms race along the East Coast, putting New York, Connecticut and Pennsylvania on the clock," said DeVaughn Ward, senior legislative counsel for the Marijuana Policy Project, a cannabis advocacy group in Hartford.




Cannabis reduces symptoms of OCD by as much as 50%, new research finds - offering natural antidepressant alternative
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is a real problem for a lot of people.
Contrary to common perception, it's not just an urge to organize pencils, stack papers perfectly and color-code book shelves. For many, OCD is a fear driven, anxiety fueled and mildly paranoid disorder. Depending on the severity, people can experience unwanted intrusive thoughts, difficulty tolerating uncertainty and a controlling need for order and symmetry.
Until now, the only known treatment for OCD has been "exposure and response prevention therapy" and prescription antidepressants known as serotonin reuptake inhibitors.

Klay explains how CBD has helped him recover from knee injury
It's been well over 16 months since Klay Thompson tore his left ACL during Game 6 of the 2019 NBA Finals.
The Warriors' star shooting guard is champing at the bit to return to game action, and will be 100 percent ready to go whenever Golden State opens training camp for the 2020-21 season.
It's been a long road to recovery for the three-time NBA champion, and the journey led to an opportunity to partner with a new CBD (cannabidiol) brand called Just Live.

Trump's Department of Justice Is Harassing Legal Weed Companies Because Bill Barr Hates Pot
The Department of Justice is deliberately harassing legal cannabis companies with pointless investigations, according to a department insider. And that's happening solely because President Trump's attorney general, Bill Barr, hates weed, the whistleblower says.
John Elias, an antitrust prosecutor who still works for Barr at the DOJ, says the department is using burdensome antitrust probes to demand companies turn over millions of documents that investigators don't need or even bother to look at. And it's using a huge portion of its antitrust resources to make life miserable for cannabis companies, he says.

Cannabinoids Can Fight Intestinal Infections, Study Finds
Endocannabinoids, the signaling molecules that operate the body's natural endocannabinoid system, can effectively shut down the genes needed for pathogenic intestinal bacteria to thrive, new research claims.
Led by scientists from the University of Texas Southwestern and published in Cell, the new study details how an increased production of these endocannabinoid molecules in mice effectively protected the animals from the more extreme symptoms of gastrointestinal infection.

Israel to legalize, regulate recreational cannabis market within 9 months
After four months in which the inter-ministerial committee for the regulation of Israel's cannabis market had been convening every week, it published its conclusions on Thursday and handed them over to the Justice Ministry. Justice Minister Avi Nissenkorn said that a legal memo will be drafted in the coming days for government approval, and that a bill could come to the Knesset floor for an initial reading even before the end of 2020, with the entire legislative process expected to take around nine months.

Understanding New Zealand 3: Cannabis Referendum Voters
Calculating the correlations between demographic variables and referendum choice was made difficult by the Electoral Commission's decision to put the ballots from different electorates into the same box on Election Day. At every polling booth, the referendum ballots for both General and Maori Electorates were put in the same box, and as such we can't accurately account for how many people in each electorate voted in favour.
The special referendum votes were broken down by electorate, but the total number of such votes was less than 20% of the number of ordinary referendum votes, and so they are not particularly representative of the New Zealand population as a whole. They also don't overcome the problem that the Maori population is split between the General Roll and the Maori Roll, and so no meaningful correlations between referendum choice and ethnicity can be calculated.

Britain legalised medicinal cannabis - and then left it to stagnate
There's a bill going through the House of Lords which will decide how the country will regulate its medicines after January 2021. It's called the medicines and medical devices bill. Among other things, it will decide how a post-Brexit UK will maintain a high degree of patient access to the best medicines, guarantee patient safety and high manufacturing standards, and ensure British regulators do not stifle global investments into our life sciences industry.
The main sentiment underlying that debate is that Britain must retain its international reputation within the life sciences and pharmaceutical industries.
Brexit represents a step into the unknown. A no-deal Brexit will create abrupt and fast changes to British regulation, threatening the country's attractiveness. But it might at least prompt a shake-up of the regulatory status quo.

The Blunt Truth About Marijuana Under Biden
This has been a big month for marijuana stocks. It began on election night, with the U.S. producing a green sweep. Five states had cannabis initiatives or amendments on their ballots for vote, and every single weed measure passed. Since California paved the way in 1996 as the first state to legalize medical marijuana, we've now witnessed 35 additional states follow suit. Of these 36 legalized medical weed states, 15 also allow recreational consumption and/or sale.
Although it took a couple of extra days, we also witnessed Democratic Party challenger Joe Biden win the presidential race. This is noteworthy considering that Democrats have a much more favorable view of cannabis than Republicans -- and it has the investment community excited.

Exclusive Q&A With Congresswoman Barbara Lee: 'Cannabis Is Not A Taboo Issue Anymore'
Failed drug policies that have disproportionately impacted communities of color and low-income communities by decriminalizing marijuana at the federal level, reassessing marijuana convictions, and investing in local communities. U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) introduced the companion bill in the Senate, now with seven Democrat Senators co-sponsoring.