Cannabis Weekly CBD News Picks: July 28th, 2016

Introducing CBD Weekly Cannabis News Picks – Every Thursday

Cannabis news articles from the week, handpicked by the CBD Business Blog Editor, to keep you informed on cannabis and cannabidiol (CBD) industry news that is important to you.

CBD News Pick – CBD Incorporated, Another Aggressive Attempt to Capitalize on Cannabis?

We continue to caution investors in the cannabis industry that too many bad actors trying to raise millions of dollars are running rampant.  Last week, we examined Cultivation Technologies Inc., which is trying to raise $20mm from investors with very bold financial projections and a significant omission about its CEO’s past.

 

CBD News Pick – Do you live in a pot hot spot?

San Francisco is the cannabis capital of America, new data shows.

In fact, the entire West Coast has far more pot smokers than the rest of the country, and a more positive opinion of what the drug does to your body.

Once you reach 12, you are far more likely to light up a joint in California, Colorado, Oregon and Washington than anywhere else in the United States.

 

CBD News Pick – Cannabis Takes Center Stage at DNC?

Cannabis has had a big presence so far at the 2016 Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Philadelphia. From protests to rallies to pot celebrations and even a little actual puffing, pot smoking voters are making their voices heard.

The convention comes on the heels of the Democratic National Committee’s National Platform meeting, which took place earlier this month in Orlando. This was the meeting where Democratic leaders and delegates defined the party’s official platform.

CBD News Pick – Willie Nelson’s Reserve – Aug Debut in CO!

Come August, Willie Nelson’s premium cannabis brand – Willie’s Reserve – will be available in select Colorado stores. The outlaw country singer is celebrating the occasion with a concert this weekend in The Centennial State.

The cannabis brand’s website proclaims, “Willie’s Reserve pays tribute to a tradition of sharing, caring and toking. It’s as if the Red Headed Stranger has offered an invitation aboard the Honeysuckle Rose to sample the choicest selections of his stash.”

CBD News Pick – Denver Consulting Group – $100 Compliance Audits!

DCG, the nation’s leading cannabis industry consultancy, announced that the company will offer low cost $100 compliance audits for cannabis dispensaries, marijuana grow operations, and processors. These professional audits provide valuable information and give insight into where businesses may be out of compliance with state and local regulations. The failure to remain compliant can result in regulator-imposed fines, temporary or permanent shutdown, and license revocation.

CBD News Pick – NW Cannabis packager 500% expansion!

Kush Bottles Inc. (Santa Ana, CA), a supplier of packaging, accessories and branding solutions for the legal cannabis industry, has opened its doors to a new regional sales and distribution center in the Seattle area of Washington. This new facility in Woodinville, WA, increases Kush Bottles’ footprint in the Pacific Northwest by more than 500%. The building contains over 13,000 square feet of warehouse and office space, which enables the company to house a large inventory for immediate deliveries or pick-ups throughout Washington and Oregon

CBD News Pick – Average Age of Legal Cannabis Customer

A recent study released by Headset Inc. gives insight into the gender, ages and spending habits of adults in Washington State since recreational cannabis was legalized. Headset Inc. reviewed an estimated 40,000 purchases of recreational cannabis between September 2014 and July 2016.

The findings determined that the average recreational cannabis consumer is male, around 37 years old, and prefers cannabis flower over all other cannabis derivatives. This average user also spends about $647 each year on cannabis. However, more insight into these findings show that women and men of all ages are active participants in the Washington’s legal cannabis market. Click for more →

CBD News Pick – Oregon Fair to be First to Feature Plants!

You might remember your last trip to the state fair — the fried foods, the sketchy carnival rides, the monster pumpkins on display. At this year’s Oregon State Fair, there will be a new attraction: Oregon-grown cannabis.

For the first time ever, prime examples of the Beaver State’s cannabis crop will be on display at the annual festival, which is scheduled to run in Salem from Aug. 26 through Sept. 5. More than 60 growers will be showcasing their live cannabis plants, which will be judged by Ed Rosenthal, the growing guru and former High Times columnist, along with four local growers.
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Amazing High CBD Cannabis in Colorado | CBD OIL + Edibles

Amazing High CBD Marijuana in Colorado | CBD OIL + Edibles

Colorado High CBD Cannabis Flower | CBD Oil | Concentrates

by Erik Muenker DC  |  CBDbusinessBlog.com

Colorado: Home to High CBD Cannabis & Hemp

Welcome to the CBD Business Blog guide to cannabidiol (CBD) rich cannabis and hemp products available within Colorado. Learn about high CBD cannabis flower, CBD Oil, tinctures and concentrates, shatters and even transdermal patches and pens.

They are available today, and many – only in the great state of Colorado!

Read on and learn which CBD product is right for you. But first, a quick recap of what high CBD cannabis really is.

– A CBD Business Blog 101 –

What: is High CBD Cannabis?

Cannabis (marijuana) is a remarkably complex and pharmacologically active plant. It consists of over 80 terpenophenolic compounds referred to as phytocannabinoids (cannabinoids). Two of the most prominent cannabinoids are THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol).

The rich interplay of cannabinoidsterpenes and flavonoids present in each and every strain of cannabis is unique and complex. Each strain expresses a distinct pharmacological profile and each will effect you in a markedly different way.

CBD is the most abundant, non-psychoactive constituent of cannabis and can make up as much as 40% of the plants cannabinoid extract. CBD has natural anti-inflammatoryneuroprotective and anti-oxidant properties, and yet it generates little to no side-effects.

Numerous preclinical studies demonstrate that CBD acts like a counter-weight to the potential anxiolytic (anxiety) producing effects of high doses of THC, the other chief cannabinoid found in cannabis.

In addition to modulating the effects of THC, CBD has been found to reduce anxiety – possibly, even more effectively than Valium (Journal of Psychopharmacology Zuardi, Jan 1993).

High CBD cannabis can help your mind to unwind and you to focus; it can heighten your creativity, while quieting the mental chatter and relaxing your entire body.

Who: High CBD for Athletes | Artists

Athletes use it to train harder, run longer (Guardian article: Runner High: the athletes who use marijuana to improve their training) and push themselves and their bodies harder. And once the training is done for the day, many athletes use high CBD cannabis to reduce aches and pains naturally and without harmful steroids or addictive opioids.

Artists like Bob Marley, Snoop Dogg, Willie Nelson, Woody Harrelson, Rihanna, Miley Cyrus, Melissa Etheridge, Morgan Freeman, Danny Devito, Danny Glover, Susan Sarandon, Whoopi Goldberg (I could go on forever) – are all out-spoken advocates for the legalization and use of cannabis. Why? It’s a natural relaxant and stress reliever. What better way to stimulate one’s creativity than to quiet the mental chatter with a smooth yet energizing sativa?

” When you smoke the HERB, it reveals you to yourself ”

– Bob Marley

Who: High CBD is for You

The CBD Business Blog is here to provide a roadmap to enjoying high quality, high CBD cannabis. From cannabis strains with little to no THC and stunning 40:1 CBD|THC ratios, to those with evenly balanced phytocannabinoid profiles.

Want more choices? CBD comes in a variety of concentrated forms, including the most common – CBD Oil, made from hemp or cannabis. But did you know that High CBD shatter is now available in select locations?

Real choices are starting to emerge for the discriminating (educated) consumer. Read on and find the right high CBD product for you.

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Cannabidiol | CBD 101 – High-CBD Cannabis and You

Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Indica flowers and extracts have been used medicinally by people around the world for thousands of years! The Cannabis plant’s flowers (and to a lesser degree the stems and seeds) contain a cornucopia of naturally occurring and pharmacologically active compounds.

Of key medical and recreational interest are the cannabinoids (over 100) and terpenoids (over 200) found (principally) in the cannabis plants flower.

CBD & THC | Cannabinoid Heavy Weights

There are over 100 phytocannabinoids found in cannabis, and nine have known medical significance (THC | CBD | THCA | CBDA | CBN | CBGA | CBG | CBC | THCV). The bulk of clinical research has been focused on the physiological effects of the two cannabinoid heavy-weights: tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).

THC is the principle psychoactive substance in cannabis. It is the ingredient in marijuana responsible for producing the high, often referred to as “feeling stoned.”

THC is a wondrous and potent drug, with a multitude of therapeutic uses. By modulating your endocannabionoid system and your central nervous system, THC becomes a powerful phytochemical that can effectively block neuropathic pain, rid you of insomnia, reduce inflammation and eliminate nausea. That’s quite a powerhouse phytocannabinoid!

THC and Possible Side-Effects

THC does produce side-effects. And young patients with disorders such as Dravet Syndrome, often require around-the-clock cannabinoid dosing. Taken frequently and in large amounts, THC can produce significant side-effects such as anxiety, depression and insomnia.

As it turns out, many of the same symptoms that THC is so effective in treating can also be generated by consuming too much THC – especially in the absence of CBD.

How low a THC concentration does one need in order to avoid noticeable side-effects? Most clinical research indicates that THC levels below 0.5% do not produce discernible cognitive side-effects. It’s quite possibly that significantly more THC can be tolerated by you without mental impairment, the science just isn’t quite there yet. You may just have to go out and try varying amounts of THC for yourself. Tough assignment huh?

High-CBD Cannabis | Good For You and Your Brain

CBD is arguably the (alright, second) most significant substance found in cannabis. What is truly remarkable is that it is considered to be completely non-psychoactive. I would argue that it is psychoactive – just not in an adverse manner. Want to avoid any psychoactive effects? It’s fairly well established that one can consume high-CBD | ultra low-THC (<0.5%) flower and concentrates – without feeling high or becoming mentally impaired.

In fact, science is only now appreciating the myriad of important entourage (synergistic) effects that the cannabinoids and terpenoids together provide – all without the need for a significant psychoactive high.

I personally favor cannabis strains with a balanced phytochemical profile. In a balanced phytochemical profile, I would expect to see both CBD and THC, along with a signature terpene expression that is robust and consistent from yield to yield.

CBD to reduce anxiety

CBD as a stress reliever has been well demonstrated in numerous preclinical trials and studies. Additional clinical studies are now underway to better explore the potential for CBD as an anxiolytic (anti-anxiety agent) and as an anti-psychotic.

CBD could even become a potential alternative treatment for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder – two disorders difficult to treat with currently available pharmaceuticals. More studies on CBD and its effect on psychosis are definitely warranted. To learn more, consider reading – Cannabidiol a Cannabis sativa constituent, as an antipsychotic drug | by Zuardi, et al., 2006 | Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research).

First and foremost, CBD balances (some argue it enhances, others say reduces) the psychoactive high – brought on by THC.

Beyond its use as an anti-psychotic, CBD is known to mitigate (reduce or eliminate) the potential anxiety produced when consuming high-THC cannabis. Your cannabis is better with CBD, than without. One can debate how much CBD is best, but in my experience zero CBD is rarely the better choice.

CBD modulates and balances the phytotherapeutic effects of THC – arguably producing an overall improved high and enhanced therapeutic experience.

Despite CBDs demonstrated ability as a stress reliever, high-CBD flower and extracts (e.g. CBD Oil) are even more widely recognized as a medicine for treating  neurological disorders such as Dravet syndrome – a severe form of early onset epilepsy. In addition, CBD is also under investigation as a potentially safe and well tolerated adjunctive treatment for multiple sclerosisParkinson’s diseaseCTE, Alzheimer’s disease and a host of other severe neurological disorders.

Terpenes | Part of a Balanced Whole Plant Profile

I would be remiss if I did not shed a little light on the importance and significance of the terpenes found in cannabis. Terpenes are organic molecules synthesized in secretory cells within the glandular trichomes of the female flower. Some are considered quite potent, pharmacologically active (yet poorly understood) and have anti-microbial, anti-depressive and anti-inflammatory properties.

Terpenes (not cannabinoids) are responsible for the pungent order cannabis is known for. More importantly, terpenes are now being investigated for their role as part of the entourage effect – the synergistic effect between cannabinoid and terpenoid that enhance the therapeutic effectiveness of cannabis.

Terpenoids, which are abundant in cannabis, are considered a Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) food additive by the US FDA. One of the most well known and abundant terpenes is Myrcene, which has the distinct smell of hops. If a particular strain smells strong of hops, it’s likely a C. Indica dominant strain. Myrcene is commonly associated with a body-high, lowered inflammation, pain reduction and muscle relaxation.

Limonene is another distinct and important terpene. It has a decidedly lemon fragrance and is highly bioavailable and a potent immune-stimulant, while also possessing stress relieving properties.

Pinene is a known anti-inflammatory and has been used in Chinese Traditional Medicine as a natural anti-cancer agent for many years. It is also being investigated as a potent bronchodilator.

Selective cross-breeding of high terpene and high-phytocannabinoid-specific strains will lead to unique phenome and create potent new Cannabis Phytochemistry.

The future of Cannabis Phytochemistry and You –
is very exciting indeed!


Why High-CBD Cannabis? | Who Is It For?

BRAIN DAMAGE? | CBD can Help

ConcussionIt’s really not that hard or that uncommon to inflict some damage to your brain.

3.8 million people suffer concussions and 1.7 million people suffer Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) each year in the U.S. alone! How many times do you recall accidentally smacking your head hard against something? How many times over the course of your lifetime?

Athletes Support CBD

While CBD has demonstrated its usefulness as a medicine, what about its role with otherwise healthy adults? What about professional athletes in sports like the NFL, NABF, MMA, NHL and others? Athletes don’t just damage their knees and shoulders; they receive significant damage to their brains over the course of a career.

Did you know that in the U.S. alone, 5 – 10 % of all athletes will experience a concussion this season alone? This doesn’t even take into account injuries our kids are receiving daily, from youth athletic programs and after school activities.

CBD as a Neuro-Protectant

Furthermore – did you know that CBD has the demonstrated ability to act as a neuro-protectant if taken prior to injury? By acting as “traffic cops” for the nervous system, the Endocannabinoid system can be influenced via CBDs, to help maintain healthy neuronal activity. When things get a little out of control (e.g. epileptic seizure, injury, concussion, PTSD), CBD has the potential to modulate and slow down an over-stimulated nervous system, thereby reducing or even eliminating the damaging effects of runaway neuronal hyperactivity.

Perhaps its worth considering adding CBD to our daily diets, as a potent and naturally occurring anti-oxidant and neuro-protectant?

DR. SANJAY GUPTA SUPPORTS MEDICAL CANNABIS

CBD has established neuroprotectiveanti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. These effects are key to CBDs ability to protect your brain and nervous system from damage.

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Cannabis Business Conference ICBC comes to Vancouver Oct 13-14

At Vancouver’s next big weed get-together, you can expect less tie-dye and more suit-and-tie. Organizers of the International Cannabis Business Conference this week at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Vancouver expect a crowd of 650 or more to attend over Thursday and Friday.

And with tickets to attend the conference running upwards of $600 each, the event might have more of a corporate feel than the average 4/20 rally.

There has been no shortage of cannabis business conferences passing through Vancouver in recent months: the Cannabis Hemp Conference came to the Westin Bayshore in July, and last month brought both Canadian Cannabis Business Week and the Lift Cannabis Expo to downtown Vancouver.

But the International Cannabis Business Conference seeks to differentiate itself from other events with its global scope and ambitions, said conference organizer and founder Alex Rogers this week. The first editions of the conference were held in San Francisco and Portland, and next April, organizers will take it to Berlin. Plans are in motion, Rogers said, for 2018 events in Australia and Croatia.

Rogers has lived and worked in five different countries, including a six-month jail sentence in Germany after a conviction for cannabis trafficking, an experience he said prompted him to “make the decision to get my life together.”

“I am international citizen,” he said. “I’m a global soul. So my goal was always to take this international.”

Rogers said it is no coincidence that Vancouver will be the first city outside the U.S. to host his event, adding: “Historically speaking, Vancouver is one of the cannabis capitals of the world.”

“I think it’s up to Canada and Vancouver to stay the leaders in this game,” he said. “They need smart, progressive policy that keeps Vancouver and Canada a leader in the cannabis world for another 100 years.”

Speakers at this week’s event include Dr. Gabor Mate, a Vancouver-based physician renowned for his writing about the science of addiction, and Kirk Tousaw, a lawyer and cannabis reform advocate. Tommy Chong, another cannabis legend with ties to Vancouver, will also appear.

Friday’s keynote speaker will be Brendan Kennedy, CEO of Privateer Holdings, a private company based in Seattle with employees in five countries (including about 130 Canada), and ambitions to be a leader in both the medicinal and recreational cannabis markets.

Privateer subsidiary Tilray, a federally licensed cannabis production facility on Vancouver Island, made history this year by becoming the first Canadian company to legally export medical marijuana overseas, said Kennedy, adding: “We’ve always viewed this industry as a global industry.”

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4 NW Cannabis Companies to Watch in 2016

Four Northwest Cannabis Companies to Watch in 2016

by Erik Muenker DC

The following four cannabis companies in the northwest are on a trajectory to disrupt and shape the future of the industry. I’d like to take a moment to shine a light on each, and tell you a little about why I think these are four cannabis companies to watch in 2016.

HiFi Farms

HiFi Farms is a really terrific craft cannabis company located in Oregon, and run by CEO Sara Batterby. Sara has established herself as a local community leader thru her work with the Portland Women Grow chapter. Under Sara’s leadership, Hifi Farms has secured a joint venture with none other than the Meriwether Group – the same firm that took Dave’s Killer Bread from a local farmer’s market stand to a company worth more than $250 million! Meriwether knows how to spot a winner and thinks the Hifi brand could be worth more than $100M.

Hifi Farms has a solid product – craft cannabis grown sustainably in Oregon, to strict Clean Green Certified standards. What does Clean Green Certified mean? Well for starters, it means that their craft cannabis is cultivated using organic practices certified by a nationally-recognized third party guarantor. Hifi Farms can’t label its product organic, since the federal government still does not recognize cannabis as a legitimate organic crop. However, Clean Green Certified is the next best thing and guarantees that HiFi Farms cannabis is free from synthetic pesticides, fungicides and mold. HiFi Farms is also committed to sustainability, quality and community engagement – not to mention killer parties with live music and really good people.

Golden Leaf Holdings

A big player in the production and distribution of cannabis flower and oils in North America, is Golden Leaf Holdings headquartered in Toronto, Canada with grow and retail operations in both Washington and Oregon. Golden Leaf Holdings is traded on the Canadian Stock Exchange (GLH), so you know their financials are in order.

GoldenXtr, GLH’s flagship brand of 100% pure cannabis oil is obtained using CO2 extraction techniques and sold within artisanal edibles or as smokeless vape cartridges that work with most third party vape pens. Proper is GLH’s brand of premium BHO (butane-extracted hash oil) shatter. Shatter is essentially super concentrated hash oil that will make your eyes flutter when inhaled. It’s strong and not for the faint-of-heart; but all the rage with the younger cannabis enthusiasts.

Privateer Holdings

A Seattle-based private equity firm founded in 2010 by Brendan Kennedy, Michael Blue, and Christian Groh – three cannabis entrepreneurs with a background in venture capital and investment banking.
The firm started off with a bang, by acquiring Leafly in 2011 – a popular cannabis information and strain review mobile app. I use the app regularly myself and see a bright future ahead for the company.

By 2013, Privateer had landed $7M in first-round funding and soon after opened Tilray – a $26M research and production facility federally-licensed to produce commercial cannabis, with a team of more than 100 industry experts. Tilray’s focus on amassing industry expertise while utilizing precise grow techniques to facilitate scientific research into cannabis plant strains and their cannabinoid profiles could be the winning formula to uncompromising innovation and success in the industry. What’s the latest with Tilray? They have just become the first company to export medical marijuana from North America to Europe (CBS News Story link).

By 2015, Privateer had already acquired an additional $75M in round-two funding! Wait a second, let me take a moment to let that sink in. That’s a 10x fold increase from round-one funding that ended only two years prior! These guys have something special up their sleeve. In February of the following year, Privateer launched
Marley Natural – a premium cannabis product line that includes flower, body care infused Hemp Oil and smoke accessories.

New Vansterdam

New Vansterdam markets are the most successful retailers of recreational cannabis markets in Washington state (as of May 2015 – Link to source). In their first year of sales, New Vansterdam markets sold more than $8.5M worth of product! Now that’s a lot of flower! All this success is built upon a solid reputation of product quality, commitment to community engagement, educating consumers and authentic and ethical business practices.

I can’t wait to see what is coming next for these NW innovators! Keep an eye on them and on this blog, for the latest industry news and insights.

Worth a mention – GW Pharma

Not a Northwest cannabis company, and not one I would personally invest in for ideological reasons – GW Pharma is still worth a brief mention.

GW Pharma is a UK-based biopharmaceutical company, that has recently received impressive results with a series of FDA clinical trials on their cannabis extract based medicine called Epidiolex. For more information on this company, their new drug and their anti-medical cannabis industry stance – please read my blog post entitled – “FDA Trial of Marijuana Drug Epidiolex – On Track for Approval?“

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Disney Bans Medical Marijuana

Disney says no to medical marijuana at Disney World.

Yes, the citizens of Florida (over 70% of them) did approve Amendment 2 and legalize medical marijuana on November 8th, 2016. Disney CEO Bob Igor disagrees.

Apparently Disney (think’s it) Knows Better Than Your DoctorThe Disney company appears to have little regard for patients relying on medical marijuana to treat their illnesses. Disney recently updated its website to include marijuana as a prohibited item on Disney property. WESH 2 News recently quoted a Disney spokesperson as saying, “We are revising our rules to clarify that marijuana is not permitted on our property.”

Medical marijuana is not easy to obtain in Florida. You need to have a serious qualifying condition, and a medical referral from the state certified medical doctor, who has been treating you for at least 3 months prior.

Your doctor determines if you qualify for Low-THC marijuana (usually High-CBD marijuana strains), or full strength medical marijuana. Then you have to find one of Florida’s state licensed dispensaries. Florida residents interested in more information on medical marijuana, should reach out to the Florida Health Department’s Office of Compassionate Use.

WHAT YOU CAN DO

Let Disney know how you feel about their new medical marijuana policy. Submit your opinion in the form of a question on the Walt Disney World Help Center Page.

You can also email your thoughts to Disney Corporate inquiries here. And Disney Shareholders might want to contact Disney through the Disney Shareholders Hotline: 1-855-553-4763. I wish you could email them, but after posting this article the shareholder email address listed here has been deactivated.

Maybe skip that trip to not so magical Disney World and instead take the family to one of our amazing National Parks, like Yosemite or Yellowstone! I’ve been going to Yosemite for decades and have never run into a problem with responsible, discreet medical cannabis use, despite marijuana remaining federally illegal on national park lands (your mileage may vary).

Dr. Erik Muenker D.C. is the Publisher and Editor of the CBD Business Blog, an online blog and journal – your source for exclusive business, scientific, health and political news impacting the recreational and medical marijuana industries.

Our focus is on cannabidiol (CBD), a non-addictivenon-psychotropic and medically powerful cannabinoid found in marijuana and hemp.             

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Vermont Set To Expand Medical Marijuana According To Medical Marijuana law

Vermont Lawmakers Approve Expansion of Medical Marijuana.

The Associated Press reports that Vermont lawmakers are expanding access to medical marijuana in the state. Legislators have approved a bill that would add additional ailments to the list of qualifying conditions AND triple the number of dispensaries in the state.

Vermont currently has four state approved medical marijuana dispensaries. The bill, when it becomes law, will expand that number to a maximum of eight dispensaries. Each of the four dispensary owners will be allowed to open two more locations.

The bill will also add Crohn’s diseasePTSD and Parkinson’s disease, to the list of ailments eligible for medical marijuana in the state.

According to Vermont’s existing medical marijuana law, the following debilitating conditions qualify for marijuana:

  • Cancer
  • AIDS/HIV
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Glaucoma
  • and chronic, debilitating diseases that produce severe:
    weight losspainnausea and/or seizures characteristic of epilepsy.

More information on Vermonts’ medical marijuana law can be found at the state web site.

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2017 Federal Spending Bill Extends Key Marijuana Protections

WASHINGTON – May 1, 2017
Marijuana advocates have reason to celebrate.

The recent Omnibus spending bill passed by the 115th GOP led Congress, maintains a key provision that has been protecting legal medical marijuana protections operations from federal prosecution since 2014.

Originally introduced in 2003, the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment did not become law until inclusion in the 2014 Omnibus Spending Bill. The amendment, known now as Section 542, is hidden away on page 223 of a 2000+ page spending bill. The section reads as follows:

Omnibus Spending Bill | Appropriations Act, 2016

Section 542. None of the funds made available in this Act to the Department of Justice may be used, with respect to any of the States of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, or with respect to the District of Columbia, Guan, or Puerto Rico, to prevent any of them from implementing their own laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of medical marijuana.

Founding member of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), was very pleased this key section made it into the spending bill. “Medical marijuana patients and the businesses that support them now have a measure of certainty,” said the congressman in a brief statement.

Watch as Rep. Blumenauer launches the Congressional Cannabis Caucus at the U.S. Capitol on February 16th, 2017.

The 115th GOP led Congress is shifting views on marijuana legalization. Several marijuana legalization bills have been introduced in the 115th Congress, by Republican and Democratic lawmakers.

Federal legalization of medical marijuana would save government more than $3 billion annually. It’s also supported by the majority of Americans. Did you know that more than 3,500 people were sentenced to marijuana related federal offenses in 2016 alone?

Ok, that’a about enough of Mr. Sessions.

The Whitehouse might stoke fears with the appointment of Jeff Sessions as U.S. Attorney General, but the U.S. Congress appears to be headed in another, more rational, direction.

The bill also continues support for research on industrial hemp – under Section 7606 of the Farm Bill (2014).

These provisions are not permanent.

The spending bill will only extend these key Marijuana Protections thru September, when Congress must again revisit the issue and also extend or pass an appropriations bill to avoid another looming government shutdown. Each time the budget has to be renewed, Congress must choose to retain or remove this key provision protecting medical marijuana programs in your state.

Tweet your thoughts to the President, @realDonaldTrump. Call your congressman and let them know how important safeguarding your cannabis rights are. Click on these links, to contact your representatives in the House and Senate! Consider getting you legislators’ office on the phone today and tell them you support permanent marijuana protections and legalization for adult-use!

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Federal Legalization of Medical Marijuana Could Save Government $3.8 Billion

In a new STUDY published by Health Affairs (April, 2017), the authors Ashley Bradford and W. David Bradford propose that the nation could save between $1 billion – $3.8 billion annually – 

Federal Legalization of Medical Marijuana Could Save Government $3.8 Billion
ijuana Saves Billions v2

Copyright © Erik Muenker 2017 All Rights Reserve
by Erik Muenker D.C. |  Exclusive CBDbusinessBlog.com

In a new STUDY published by Health Affairs (April, 2017), the authors Ashley Bradford and W. David Bradford propose that the nation could save between $1 billion – $3.8 billion annually – if medical marijuana was federally legal and available in every state.

How is this possible?

Through the magic of prescription drug savings achieved by both Medicare and Medicaid. The study suggests that when medical marijuana is available in a state, Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries fill fewer prescriptions1-2. The authors discovered, after sifting through considerable data, the medical marijuana availability in a state correlated to a 2% drop in total Medicaid spending on prescriptions.

Two percent might not seem like much, but according to the Medicaid State Drug Utilization Data – in 2014 alone, Medicaid prescription spending totaled nearly $24 billion. A 2% drop in drug spending would be a windfall of cash savings for both the state and federal government, not to mention the private insurers that stand to gain.

State + Federal Savings – Due to availability of medical marijuana
Why would medical marijuana be responsible for fewer filled prescriptions?

Although the Drug Enforcement Administration recently reaffirmed its stance that marijuana is a CSA Schedule I drug (CSA wiki), overwhelming evidence to the contrary continues to mount. Of the three main qualifiers for Schedule I status: “no currently accepted medical uses,” “has a high rate of abuse,” and ” a lack of accepted safety for use … under medical supervision.” – marijuana satisfies none of them.

The evidence that marijuana does not belong in Schedule I is striking and clear.

  • Marijuana is safe,
  • not subject to a high rate of abuse,
  • and has a plethora of valid medical uses.

Marijuana is safe and effective to use and is actually correlated with reduced traffic fatalities, adolescent drug abuse and drug overdoses.1-5 

We find that the legalization of medical marijuana is associated with decreased alcohol consumption, especially by 20- through 29-year-olds. In addition, we find that legalization is associated with decreased beer sales, the most popular alcoholic beverage among young adults (Jones 2008).” – Anderson & Rees3

The Bradford study examined medical conditions where medical marijuana could supplant the use of prescription drugs. Conditions included nausea, pain, insomnia, seizures, anxiety, psychosis and depression.1,5

“We hypothesized that medical marijuana laws would be associated with a decrease in prescribing of FDA-approved drugs because medical marijuana would substitute for those drugs.”
– Ashley C. Bradford and W. David Bradford | Citation 1

The finding were staggering.

The Bradford’s observed a range of reductions, from a 42% drop in prescriptions used to treat nausea (averages depicted below) to a 15% reduction for drugs related to muscle spasticity.

Average reductions in prescriptions commonly ranged 10% – 20% for psychosis, depression, pain, seizures and anxiety, although some states saw even more dramatic reductions.

Drop in Medicaid Rx Costs – Less Prescriptions Filled
Percent Drop Rx Drug Costs linked to availability of Medical Marijuana

Citations

1 Ashley C. Bradford and W. David Bradford – Medical Marijuana Laws May
Be Associated With A Decline In The Number Of Prescriptions For Medicaid Enrollees.
Health Affairs published [online April 19, 2017] | Full: http://bit.ly/2oEVVCy

2 Bradford AC, Bradford WD. Medical marijuana laws reduce prescription medication use in Medicare Part D. Health Affairs (Millwood). 2016; 35(7):1230–6. http://bit.ly/2oA96EM | Full: http://bit.ly/2ozW7D0

3 Anderson DM, Rees DI. Medical marijuana laws, traffic fatalities, and alcoholic consumption. J Law Econ. 2013;56(2):333-69 | http://bit.ly/2oF9NwH

4 Klofas J, Letteney K. The social and legal effects of medical marijuana: state legislation and rules. Rochester (NY), published online. Center for Public Safety Initiatives, Rochester Institute of Technology; 2012 Mar | http://bit.ly/2oF9Icf

4 Powell D, Pacula RL, Jacobson M. Do medical marijuana laws reduce addictions and deaths related to pain killers? [Published online]. Cambridge (MA): National Bureau of Economic Research; 2015 Jul | http://bit.ly/2oF1W28

5 Hill KP. Medical marijuana for treatment of chronic pain and other medical and psychiatric problems: a clinical review. JAMA. 2015; 313(24):2474–83 Abstract: http://bit.ly/2ooUpIA

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Americans support for Legal Marijuana Climbs to 60%!

HAPPY 420 | Great news to celebrate!

WASHINGTON, D.C. — According to the latest Gallup Poll, the support for legal marijuana stands at an all-time high of 60%!

Gallup Q: “Do you think the use of marijuana should be made legal, or not?

A: 60% said YES, legalize Americans approve of legal marijuana! * Gallup Poll Oct. 2016

Notice that this poll was taken in October 2016 – before the November election that changed everything, when only 4 states in the U.S. legalized recreational marijuana. As of todayeight states (plus D.C.) have legalized recreational marijuana use in the United States, and more are on the way!

One in five Americans now live in a state where it is legal to consume marijuana without a doctor’s note!

Colorado, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Maine and Massachusetts all have legalized recreational marijuana. For more details on the November elections, and the grounding legislation passed, click here.

Marijuana on display at an Oregon Dispensary

The Marijuana Map

United States Legal Marijuana Map 2017

Business is Booming

Just the CBD market alone is predicted to grow 700% and reach $3 billion by 2021! And this data does not fully take into account the market set to explode in California. According to ArcView (a top cannabis market research firm), the legal marijuana industry in California alone should reach $6.45 billion by 2020.

That’s explosive growth. Along with it will come plenty of industry jobs and substantial source of new tax revenue for the states!

One TOKE Over the Line   |   Lawrence Welk Show (1971)

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