Michigan hemp farmers collect first harvest for CBD products – MLive.com

ARMADA, MI — Farmers harvesting the first batch of legal hemp Friday said they could be looking at Michigan’s next big cash crop.

For the first time, nearly 600 farmers are harvesting legal hemp across the state. The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development issued the first industrial hemp licenses to farmers earlier this year, allowing local entrepreneurs to enter the market for hemp-infused healthcare products — promoted as a treatment for headaches, chronic pain and anxiety — that consumers are finding everywhere from retail storefronts to shelves in Family Video stores.

Hemp is a fast-growing strain of cannabis with extremely low levels of THC, which means users can experience therapeutic benefits without getting high. The crop also has environmental benefits; it takes less water, is naturally resistant to pests and can be introduced into rotations with other cash crops like corn and soybeans to clean pollutants from the soil.

“The de-stigmatization is a big part of building this supply chain, understanding there is a lot of opportunities economically for framers, theres a lot of benefits to consumers,” said Andrew Blake, co-owner of Blake’s Hard Cider and manager of the family cider mill. „There’s also probably some benefits touted out there that isn’t correct that we need to educate and understand. Getting the scientific community behind it and studies done, all of that is important as we try to build this out.

Stakeholders in Kinder Products Unlimited, a new business venture launched in partnership with Blake’s Orchard & Cider Mill, celebrated the harvest of seven acres of industrial hemp Friday in Armada. In addition to an indoor greenhouse operation, three acres were planted at a remote outdoor location removed from the orchard’s public fairgrounds to test how well the crop would fare on Michigan farmland.

Blake has plans to plant 20-50 acres of hemp next season. He partnered with childhood friend and attorney Gino Roncelli and cousin Rebecca Blake to launch the new band, which manufactures and sells CBD-infused products using Michigan-grown hemp.

Hemp is used a variety of commercial and industrial goods, but Michigan consumers are most familiar with ingestible products. Roncelli said hemp stalks and stems can be used to create various fibers and textiles, though those goods are several years away due to a lack of any regional production facilities.

“There’s probably not a great use for it at this moment,” Roncelli said. “There should be though, and someone is going to take that opportunity and use it.”

Blake represents the third generation of his family to farm in Armada since his grandfather opened a cider mill in 1946. The operation expanded significantly in the last 73 years and now includes 880-acres of farmland, a sprawling fairground packed with popular fall attractions, a tasting room and production facility for wine and hard cider products Blake launched in 2013 after returning to the family business.

Blake’s Hard Cider is the largest producer of alcoholic cider in the Midwest and 15th-largest in the U.S. From The business on track to sell 300,000 cases this year, all created in a 40,000-square-foot production facility behind its Armada tasting room.

Much of the infrastructure is already in place to begin producing CBD-infused teas, which is key to Blake’s vision for keeping the business vertically-integrated. Blake said the foray into CBD-infused products is a natural extension of his family’s self-reliant entrepreneurial spirit.

Hemp-based self-care products like oils, ointments, facial creams, bath bombs, gummies and even dog treats are already available on Kinder’s online marketplace and the farm’s retail outlets. Four flavors of canned CBD-infused teas will be available later this year, pending FDA approval.

Roncelli said the Michigan hemp market is expected to rapidly expand in the coming years and could replace soybean crops. The alternative crop could be especially for farmers who struggled with the effects of flooding and an ongoing trade fight with China which cut exports of Michigan agricultural commodities like soybeans.

One acre with 1,200 hemp plants can yield roughly $20,000 worth of crops — a figure that blows other cash crops out of the water — but Blake said the value will likely drop as other farmers begin planting their own crop.

“This is all very exploratory, but we’re all very excited about the opportunity,” Blake said. “As more people get comfortable and understand what it is and isn’t, we hope to be the educating piece.”

Colorado Attorney Explains the Roots of CBD’s Weird FDA Status | Westword – Westword

Just a couple of years ago, few people had ever heard of cannabidiol, or CBD. But now, it’s everywhere — on shelves at grocery stores and other shops, offered with smoothies and coffee, and widely available online.

By 2024, the domestic market for CBD is forecasted to reach $20 billion, according to Colorado cannabis data analytics firm BDS Analytics. With sales of approximately $1.9 billion in 2018, that represents astounding growth in just a few years.

That said, CBD faces a wide range of hurdles on the regulatory and legal fronts. And it flirts with turning into a short-lived bubble. A general lack of research and science into CBD’s benefits has created a wild West of claims. People (illegally) champion CBD for everything from sleep to energy. They suggest it fights cancer, suppresses pain, alleviates anxiety and much more.

Unfortunately, few of these claims are backed-up by rigorous scientific studies. At some point, consumers could grow weary of the wilderness of unfounded benefits and cures. After all, CBD can’t be effective for everything.

It shouldn’t be this way. The little science on CBD that does exist portends fantastic promise for human health, but thanks to the DEA failing to distinguish between psychotropic cannabinoids like THC and non-psychotropic cannabinoids like CBD and classifying all non-synthetic cannabinoids (as well as the plant Cannabis sativa L. itself) as Schedule I drugs for decades, researchers are just now are beginning important research and clinical trials that should have been conducted years ago. The state cannabis legalization initiatives re-ignited research interest into these compounds, but thanks to the removal of hemp from Schedule I last year (THC, and the cannabis plant remain on the list), more research finally can begin.

Marijuana Deals Near You

As a brief refresher: Congress passed The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) in 1971 at the urging of the Nixon Administration. Soon thereafter, the Drug Enforcement Administration was founded and tasked with determining substances worthy of inclusion or removal from the CSA-established Schedules, along with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. According to the DEA, the Schedules are organized by “the drug’s acceptable medical use and the drug’s abuse or dependency potential,” with perceived abuse rate as the determining factor.

As such, compounds with “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse” are classified as Schedule I substances.

But cannabis sits in Schedule I. The entire cannabis legalization movement in the United States rests on the foundation of the medical benefits of cannabis. This designation alone highlights the absurdity of Schedule I.

At the same time, states have passed laws legalizing marijuana, and the federal government has largely refrained from interfering, despite cannabis’s Schedule I designation. Unfortunately, state laws have little effect on the scant volume of scientific research into cannabis. With cannabis and THC classified as Schedule I drugs, federal money for research into them is largely unavailable. Additionally, Schedule I disincentivizes large corporations that typically invest in and conduct pharmaceutical trials from studying cannabis.

It’s the very essence of catch-22: If research shows that cannabis offers medical benefits, then it could be removed from Schedule I, or even possibly completely de-scheduled. But since it is a Schedule I drug, serious scientific research into the plant is exceedingly difficult to conduct.

It is its Schedule I status that has facilitated the rise of the balkanized and inconsistent cannabinoid marketplaces.

Cannabis plants with a THC level greater than .3 percent dry weight by volume (for the purposes of this discussion, “marijuana”), natural THC and all compounds extracted from marijuana remain illegal, according to the federal government. This means that CBD and similar cannabinoids, which contain no THC, remain illegal if they were extracted from marijuana plants.

To make matters even more confusing, last year the FDA approved Epidiolex, a drug made from natural CBD extracted from the cannabis plant. The drug is used to treat seizures associated with two rare and severe forms of epilepsy: Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome and Dravet Syndrome.

Does the approval of a CBD drug suggest smooth sailing for CBD in coming months and years? What about the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, which legalized much hemp agriculture and manufacturing in the United States?

Hardly. Most hemp-derived CBD oversight now is in the hands of FDA. The agency in May declared that cannabidiol products „are excluded from the dietary supplement definition,” meaning that FDA would not treat CBD like it does other plants, such as ginger, milk thistle and maca root, that are found in dietary supplements.

Why? Because GW Pharmaceuticals has an approved drug, Epidiolex on the market, and CBD is the active pharmaceutical ingredient in the drug. According to statute, compounds in drugs cannot be used in dietary supplements.

So how does FDA square this prohibition with the fact that countless CBD products are available all over the country in a great variety of establishments?

Well, it starts by holding hearings.

The agency held its first CBD hearing in May, during which I was invited to speak. The hearing was disconcerting. One powerful takeaway: We need much more education about CBD. People in the audience, presenters, and even members of the panel continually said things that simply were not true. The volume of misinformation that was showcased at the hearing was worrisome to say the least, but there was certainly some accurate information that was troubling in its own right

For example, one CBD product testing company presented evidence demonstrating that out of 25 CBD products from the Midwest and Southeast tested, only one contained exactly what it advertised. Several contained dangerous synthetic cannabinoids, including DXM, an active ingredient in many cough medications and a powerful hallucinogen at higher dosages.

FDA is feeling the pressure. Betsy Booren, an executive at the Grocery Manufacturers Association, said during that hearing: „As consumer interest for food, beverage, personal care and household products containing cannabis and cannabis derivatives continues to grow, the necessity for national uniform regulatory frameworks that protect public health is of critical importance.” The association represents large consumer products goods companies like Coca-Cola, General Mills, The Kellogg Company and Procter & Gamble.

The hearing concluded with no clear path forward, but given the statements that have been coming out of FDA recently, it would appear that some kind of resolution is being planned. There isn’t much actionable information yet, but there are some general ideas on how FDA could proceed.

The administration could decide to treat CBD the same way it treats things like ibuprofen (over-the-counter designation), meaning that, among other things, the form of the drug will be fairly uniform, testing and standards will be rigorous and rigid, and gaining approval will be expensive. Infusing products like gummies and smoothies with CBD will probably be forbidden. Instead, CBD will come in a uniform pill.

FDA also could draft a CBD equivalent of the Cole Memorandum, which essentially stated that the Department of Justice would not interfere with state cannabis business provided certain criteria were met, even though marijuana was illegal under federal law. In this case, the administration could let it be known that it will not interfere with hemp-derived CBD sales.

Lastly, it could opt to treat CBD like a dietary supplement, something the industry dearly wants, but this option seems unlikely.

It’s too early to tell exactly what is going to happen with CBD. It appears, however, that we are on the right side of history, and CBD and eventually cannabis soon will be treated reasonably.

Perhaps more importantly, cannabis and CBD have scrambled the government’s carefully crafted narrative regarding cannabis, which is hopefully just the opening salvo in a much broader war. The battles will inevitably move beyond cannabis and cannabinoids, and if there is to be any hope of victory, this war must address the fundamental regulatory structure of substance classification.

Schedule I is the most anti-science legislation ever drafted. Whether you advocate for sensible drug policy or are more of a Regan era “Just Say No” abstainer, it’s hard to argue that a substance is so dangerous that it can’t be studied at all.

A bottle of aspirin can kill an adult easily, but anyone can purchase it over the counter. Yet doctors and scientists are forbidden from even studying LSD, despite the fact that LSD has proven to be so safe that medical science has been unable to determine what’s called its “LD50,” a term the government uses to calculate the dosage that would cause 50 percent of humans taking the drug to die from an overdose. In other words, research has yet to show that a certain quantity of LSD can kill a human.

In comparison, the LD50 for Aspirin is approximately 20 grams, and the LD50 for Tylenol is approximately 8 grams. The LD50 for Fentanyl is approximately 2 milligrams.

What about the Schedule I requirement that the drugs have no known medical benefit? We already reviewed the ridiculousness of Schedule I for cannabis, but what about other Schedule I drugs?

Among other things, LSD shows potential for treating alcoholism. This is not a recent discovery. Bill Wilson, the co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, participated in medically supervised experiments in the 1950s, and believed that “regular usage of LSD in a carefully controlled, structured setting would be beneficial for many recovering alcoholics.” The drug MDMA shows great promise as a treatment for post traumatic stress disorder, among other things. Ibogaine appears to cure opioid dependence and eliminate withdraw symptoms. Psilocybin has been shown to be effective for helping with trauma and easing the anxiety of patients with terminal illnesses come to terms with their fate. 2,5-Dimethoxy-4-iodoamphetamine (DOI), a psychedelic compound, is potentially the single most powerful anti-inflammatory yet discovered, and appears to block pulmonary inflammation, mucus hyper-production, airway hyper-responsiveness and turns off key genes in in-lung immune response. These effects block the development of allergic asthma in a mouse model.

The Schedule I classification, the arbitrary and capricious nature of what gets placed in that category, the prohibition of research into the compounds on it, the general Scheduling system as a whole — all of it amounts to historical and ongoing crimes against humanity.

There are numerous examples of substances that are classified as Schedule I drugs that have already been proven to have lifesaving or life improving effects. We believe that if Schedule I classification did not prohibit research, many more of the entries on that list could prove to be extremely valuable medicines. But as long as they remain confined on Schedule I, these medical benefits will remain either unknown or unusable.

To be clear, there are some compounds that shouldn’t be available to the public. Heroin and meth come to mind. Instead of rejecting the very idea of the government banning select drugs from public consumption, we advocate for sensible revisions to the law. Ethical studies of all scheduled substances are desperately needed.

I will say it again: the concept of Schedule I and all of its ramifications are monumentally, tragically and criminally flawed. The application of Schedule I and the CSA should be considered a crime against humanity. It is time for lawmakers to “Just say NO!” to fear and misinformation, and to embrace the betterment of their fellow man by removing substances like cannabis, LSD and MDMA from Schedule I, and to end the prohibition against regulated research and clinical trials for compounds that remain in the Schedule I category.

Dave Rodman is the founder and managing partner of The Rodman Law Group, a law firm based in Denver, that focuses on the cannabis, hemp, cannabinoid, and blockchain sectors.

Westword occasionally publishes essays and op-eds on matters of interest to metro Denver readers; find out more at editorial@westword.com.

The Week In Cannabis: Good Policy News, Mixed Stock Performance, Strong Week For ETFs – Benzinga

This week marked one year since the rollout of the adult-use cannabis program in Canada, and America’s hat celebrated by adding edibles, beverages and vapes to the list of approved products.

Legally accredited cannabis producers in the country sold about $1.1 billion of legal weed during the first year of legalization, according to an analysis of retail sales data by Cannabis Benchmarks. Meanwhile, Mexico continued to move closer to full legalization, as key Senate leaders unveiled draft legalization legislation.

On the markets front, Cronos Group Inc (NASDAQ: CRON) posted gains of up to 40% on Wednesday’s after-hours session. The standing theory points toward a mistake from a trader that led to substantial short covering. While the stock recalibrated after a few hours, it did end the week up 7%.

Aphria Inc (TSX: APHA) (NYSE: APHA) went on a rally after reporting net first-quarter revenue of CA$126.1 million ($95.3 million), up 849% year-over-year, on revenue for adult-use cannabis of CA$20million, up 8% quarter-over-quarter. The company posted positive adjusted EBITDA of CA$1 million and adjusted EBITDA from cannabis operations of CA$1.3 million in the quarter.

Click here for more information about the upcoming Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference Oct. 22-23 in Chicago.

Meanwhile, shares of DionyMed Brands Inc (OTC: DYMEF) went on a volatility roller-coaster, as the CEO and COO resigned, and the company defaulted its debt obligations.

“The implosion of DionyMed is a story that we may see get repeated more often in the future months,” Debra Borchardt, CEO of Green Market Report, told Benzinga. “The company has imploded quickly after basically not making debt payments.

“Usually the creditors try to work out a deal so that they get at least something. In this case, as it looked like more creditors were beginning to line up with their palms out. In this case, GLAS has demanded $24 million, which is probably going to bankrupt the company. The CEO and COO have resigned. A spectacular flame out that we sadly may see more of in the future.”

Finally, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a number of bills aimed at making tax laws more fair to cannabis businesses in the state, and Houseplant, the cannabis company co-founded by Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen, in partnership with Canopy Growth Corp (NYSE: CGC), launched two new product lines.

If you want to get this news recap in your email inbox every week, please subscribe to https://tinyletter.com/javierhasse

Cannabis ETFs delivered big gains. Over the last five trading days:

• The Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences Index ETF (OTC: HMLSF) (TSE:HMMJ) rose 3.63%

• The ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF (NYSE: MJ) gained 5.15%

• The AdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF (NYSE: YOLO) was up 4.38%

• The Cannabis ETF (NYSE: THCX) advanced 3.89%

• The Amplify Seymour Cannabis ETF (NYSE: CNBS) rose by 3.62%

• The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (NYSE: SPY) closed the period up 0.7%

More News From The Week

Greenbox Robotics, manufacturers of robotic CBD and cannabis retailers, joined forces with Solvent payment processing. The two companies view the strategic alignment as a symbiotic relationship.  

“greenbox Robotics has been on the cusp of disrupting how the CBD and Cannabis industry thinks about retail. Solvent is thrilled to provide the missing piece, compliance driven payments. You will not find a more passionate team than greenbox under the leadership of CEO Zack Johnson. We’re excited to be a part of their current and future impact to the retail industry,” says Brian Meyer, Solvent Co-Founder & VP of Business Development. 

Famed artist Richard Prince is now in the cannabis industry. Cannabis consumers can find Katz + Dogg at select MedMen Enterprises Inc (OTC: MMNFF) stores. The Katz + Dogg line includes flowers, vape pens and pre-rolled joints, and will be sold at only four of MedMen’s Los Angeles locations, bringing together the worlds of contemporary art and next generation cannabis retail.

SLANG Worldwide Inc (OTC: SLGWF) entered into a strategic partnership with Cookies, a cannabis and lifestyle brand foundedby Bay Area rapper and entrepreneur Berner, to bring its products products to the Colorado market. Cookies’ dried flower and concentrates will add to SLANG’s well established product portfolio presence in Colorado, joining top selling brands O.PenVape, District Edibles, Bakked concentrates and Pressies.

“We are proud to add the Cookies brand to our growing and diverse product portfolio in Colorado to increase our presence in one off the biggest cannabis markets,” SLANG Worldwide CEO Peter Miller said. “Berner and the Cookies family are passionate advocates and connoisseurs that continue drive cannabis culture.”

Canopy Growth Corporation (TSX: WEED) (NYSE: CGC) sold 42 million AusCann Group shares through a market block trade at 15 cents per share for gross proceeds of $6.3 million. The sale accounts for Canopy Growth’s total 13.2% interest in AusCann.

Flowhub, a cannabis retail management platform closed an oversubscribed $23-million Series A financing round led by e.ventures; Evolv Ventures, the venture fund supported by Kraft Heinz; and Poseidon.

Valens GroWorks Corp. (TSX: VGW) (OTC: VGWCF) reported third-quarter revenue of $16.5 million, an 87.1% quarter-over-quarter jump. The cannabis extraction company achieved positive adjusted EBITDA of $9.8 million in the quarter versus $2 million in the second quarter. It posted net income of $5.9 million or 5 cents per share, a reversal from a net loss of $10.5 million or 10 cents per share in the prior quarter.

Avicanna Inc (TSX: AVCN) (OTC: AVCNF) joined the OTCQX Markets and received a United States Department of Agriculture national organic program certification from Control Union Certifications, for its hemp cultivar. It has also attained registration for extra 15 genetic strains of cannabis.

springbig, a leading provider in cannabis CRM and loyalty marketing technology announced its 10 million customer milestone since its launch in 2017. In April, springbig hit its 5 million customer milestone, which means the company doubled in the span of six months. In addition, springbig was announced as South Florida’s No. 2 fastest growing technology company, capturing 23% of the market share among 43 million adult users with plans to multiply its customer base in the coming months as they integrate their innovative programs with new retailers and as more states enter the recreational space.

“We are thrilled to reach our 10 million customer milestone as we continue to provide dispensaries around the country with the most accurate tools to organically grow their businesses, increase retention, ROI and sales,” said Jeffrey Harris, Founder and CEO of springbig. „The latest sales statistics underscores the efficacy of springbig’s services and we look forward to integrating our innovative programs with new retailers next year as more states enter both the medicinal and recreational space.”

The United Natural Products Alliance welcomed Mile High Labs as the first hemp company to join its organization. The announcement was made during UNPA’s annual meeting at Supply Side West, the dietary supplement industry’s premier trade show in Las Vegas. UNPA President Loren Israelsen noted the decision was made in part by Mile High Labs’ “clear commitment to quality, science and research together with a world-class facility and a committed and competent management team.” 

Former Seattle Seahawks linebacker Lofa Tatupu has launched his new line, ZoneIn CBD, motivated by years of suffering from chronic pain derived from a lifetime of competitive athletics.

Vertically integrated cannabis company Holistic Industries closed a $55-million funding round.

Aurora Cannabis (NYSE: ACB) (TSX: ACB) announced plans to roll out vapes, concentrates and edibles, for sale starting in December.

Better Choice Company (OTC: BTTR), an animal health and wellness CBD company, said Wednesday it signed a definitive agreement to acquire holistic pet foods company Halo, Purely for Pets.

SOL Global announced that shareholders approved the company’s name change to „Bluma Wellness.” The change reflects SOL Global’s transition to becoming a multistate operator, and will go into effect within the upcoming weeks. „We have assembled an incredibly talented and seasoned management team that is excited to build up Bluma’s operations in Florida and the proposed operations in Michigan and California,” SOL Global CEO Brady Cobb told Benzinga. 

SOL Global’s ‚One Plant’ Brand found that its proprietary delivery model saw continued growth by 20% or more, week after week since July, making it one of the fastest growing delivery services for medicinal cannabis in Florida, despite having a single retail location.

„We outsold competitors who have over a dozen brick and mortar locations,” SOL Global CEO Brady Cobb told Benzinga. „This is a testament to the power of our home delivery model and how One Plant cuts right to profit.”

Planet 13 (CSE: PLTH) (OTC: PLNHF), the world’s largest cannabis dispensary announced the opening of its Phase II expansion at its Las Vegas superstore. The 4,500 sq-ft restaurant/bistro/pizzeria and café, across the grand-entrance hall from the dispensary, seats 150 and features a greenhouse concept design that brings the outdoors inside.

“Planet 13 continues to set the standard for exceptional cannabis experiences giving visitors the ability to shop, eat and have fun all in one luxurious cannabis-themed complex,” said Larry Scheffler, Co-CEO of Planet 13. „The 3,000 plus daily visitors to our Cannabis Entertainment Complex can now have the option to enjoy a gourmet coffee and delicious food and walk across the hall to experience the best cannabis dispensary in the world.”

Nextleaf Solutions (OTC: OILFF) announced that it entered into an agreement to consolidate Nextleaf Labs under the Nextleaf Solutions name. Nextleaf Labs, located in greater Vancouver, was granted a Standard Processor license earlier last month. Nextleaf Solutions currently holds eight issued patents relating to cannabinoids.

Paul Pedersen told Benzinga, „We’re thrilled to expand our operations as we move towards developing and acquiring additional patents pertaining to industrial-scale extraction, purification, and formulation of THC and CBD. As we get into the next wave of legalization, we’re proud to power the technology behind many of these 2.0 products such as infused beverages and vapes.”

Top Stories Of The Week

Check out the top stories on Benzinga Cannabis this week:

Check out these and many other cannabis stories on Benzinga.com/cannabis

Events Calendar

Oct. 22–23: The Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference is coming to Chicago, Illinois! You know you can’t miss it. Go to https://www.benzingacannabisconference.com/ for more information.

Oct. 23: Vangst will be participating in Santa Rita Jail Re-Entry Job & Resource Fair to help inmates who are eager and ready to be employed immediately or within the next six months. There will be 100 inmates and up to 20 employers participating in this job fair. Vangst will be the only cannabis employer at this event and will be there to discuss the different types of jobs that are available in the cannabis industry today. 

Oct. 24: Patients, advocates, business professionals, and the Midwest community is invited to learn more about the budding cannabis industry at Sensible Minnesota’s 3rd Annual Minnesota Cannabis Summit. The event will take place at the Anderson Center of Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Oct.25–27: Humble Bloom is offering its HB Field Trip, a weekend retreat at Aster Farms and Lodge at Blue Lakes, in beautiful Lake County, California. “Aster is excited to celebrate the harvest with the amazing community assembled by Humble Bloom,” says Sam Ludwig president of Aster Farms. “Spreading the word on sustainability, responsible farming, health and wellness is a pillar of our company and we look forward to educating and sharing out knowledge to guests, colleagues and the community.”

Oct. 28: in Ontario, Canada at Blue Mountain Village, the tourism and cannabis industry will come together for the first time for the 1st Annual New Heights Cannabis Tourism Summit. The 1-day event, will feature trailblazers and experts who are already creating canna-tourism experiences such as cannabis-friendly hotels, resorts, festivals, spas, activities and more. “Canna-tourism can have a major economic impact, both directly and indirectly for both industries, similar to wine tourism.” Says Jennifer Mason, Founder, New Heights. “This Summit is designed to bring together the two industries to forge partnerships in order to build experiences and attract new customers. Recent market research indicates the future cannabis consumer looks  more like a wine tourist than the stereotypical ‘stoner’. There are many untapped opportunities, Canada is posed to lead the industry with culinary tourism, spa and wellness experiences and more.”

Oct. 27–28: Benzinga Cannabis Managing Director Javier Hasse will speak at The Fourth Annual Cannabis LAB (CLAB) Conference & Expo in Miami. Other speakers include Brady Cobb, CEO of Sol Global Investments Corporation; Ricky Williams, Vice President of Real Wellness; Gerry Greenspoon, Co-Founder of Greenspoon Marder Law; Matthew Ginder, Senior Counsel at Greenspoon Marder Law; Brett Finkelstein, Managing Director at Phyto Partners LP;  Jose Javier Hildago, CEO of FLUENT Cannabis; Jared Mirsky, CEO of Wick & Mortar; Kim Rivers, CEO of Trulieve; Jon Robbins, Partner of Akerman LLP; David Tran, Co-Founder of Dope Media; Chloe Villano, Founder of Cannabis Business Awards; Rosie Mattio, CEO of Mattio PR; and many others.

Picture by Javier Hasse.

© 2019 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

The Week In Cannabis: Good Policy News, Mixed Stock Performance, Strong Week For ETFs – Yahoo Finance

one year since the rollout of the adult-use cannabis program in Canada, and America’s hat celebrated by adding edibles, beverages and vapes to the list of approved products.” data-reactid=”18″>This week marked one year since the rollout of the adult-use cannabis program in Canada, and America’s hat celebrated by adding edibles, beverages and vapes to the list of approved products.

Legally accredited cannabis producers in the country sold about $1.1 billion of legal weed during the first year of legalization, according to an analysis of retail sales data by Cannabis Benchmarks. Meanwhile, Mexico continued to move closer to full legalization, as key Senate leaders unveiled draft legalization legislation.

p to 40% on Wednesday’s after-hours session. The standing theory points toward a mistake from a trader that led to substantial short covering. While the stock recalibrated after a few hours, it did end the week up 7%.” data-reactid=”20″>On the markets front, Cronos Group Inc (NASDAQ: CRON) posted gains of up to 40% on Wednesday’s after-hours session. The standing theory points toward a mistake from a trader that led to substantial short covering. While the stock recalibrated after a few hours, it did end the week up 7%.

APHA) went on a rally after reporting net first-quarter revenue of CA$126.1 million ($95.3 million), up 849% year-over-year, on revenue for adult-use cannabis of CA$20million, up 8% quarter-over-quarter. The company posted positive adjusted EBITDA of CA$1 million and adjusted EBITDA from cannabis operations of CA$1.3 million in the quarter.

Click here for more information about the upcoming Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference Oct. 22-23 in Chicago.” data-reactid=”22″>Click here for more information about the upcoming Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference Oct. 22-23 in Chicago.

DYMEF) went on a volatility roller-coaster, as the CEO and COO resigned, and the company defaulted its debt obligations.

“The implosion of DionyMed is a story that we may see get repeated more often in the future months,” Debra Borchardt, CEO of Green Market Report, told Benzinga. “The company has imploded quickly after basically not making debt payments.

“Usually the creditors try to work out a deal so that they get at least something. In this case, as it looked like more creditors were beginning to line up with their palms out. In this case, GLAS has demanded $24 million, which is probably going to bankrupt the company. The CEO and COO have resigned. A spectacular flame out that we sadly may see more of in the future.”

launched two new product lines.” data-reactid=”26″>Finally, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a number of bills aimed at making tax laws more fair to cannabis businesses in the state, and Houseplant, the cannabis company co-founded by Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen, in partnership with Canopy Growth Corp (NYSE: CGC), launched two new product lines.

https://tinyletter.com/javierhasse” data-reactid=”27″>If you want to get this news recap in your email inbox every week, please subscribe to https://tinyletter.com/javierhasse

Cannabis ETFs delivered big gains. Over the last five trading days:

HMLSF) (TSE:HMMJ) rose 3.63%

MJ) gained 5.15%

YOLO) was up 4.38%

THCX) advanced 3.89%

CNBS) rose by 3.62%

SPY) closed the period up 0.7%

“greenbox Robotics has been on the cusp of disrupting how the CBD and Cannabis industry thinks about retail. Solvent is thrilled to provide the missing piece, compliance driven payments. You will not find a more passionate team than greenbox under the leadership of CEO Zack Johnson. We’re excited to be a part of their current and future impact to the retail industry,” says Brian Meyer, Solvent Co-Founder & VP of Business Development. 

MMNFF) stores. The Katz + Dogg line includes flowers, vape pens and pre-rolled joints, and will be sold at only four of MedMen’s Los Angeles locations, bringing together the worlds of contemporary art and next generation cannabis retail.

SLGWF) entered into a strategic partnership with Cookies, a cannabis and lifestyle brand foundedby Bay Area rapper and entrepreneur Berner, to bring its products products to the Colorado market. Cookies’ dried flower and concentrates will add to SLANG’s well established product portfolio presence in Colorado, joining top selling brands O.PenVape, District Edibles, Bakked concentrates and Pressies.

“We are proud to add the Cookies brand to our growing and diverse product portfolio in Colorado to increase our presence in one off the biggest cannabis markets,” SLANG Worldwide CEO Peter Miller said. “Berner and the Cookies family are passionate advocates and connoisseurs that continue drive cannabis culture.”

CGC) sold 42 million AusCann Group shares through a market block trade at 15 cents per share for gross proceeds of $6.3 million. The sale accounts for Canopy Growth’s total 13.2% interest in AusCann.

VGWCF) reported third-quarter revenue of $16.5 million, an 87.1% quarter-over-quarter jump. The cannabis extraction company achieved positive adjusted EBITDA of $9.8 million in the quarter versus $2 million in the second quarter. It posted net income of $5.9 million or 5 cents per share, a reversal from a net loss of $10.5 million or 10 cents per share in the prior quarter.

AVCNF) joined the OTCQX Markets and received a United States Department of Agriculture national organic program certification from Control Union Certifications, for its hemp cultivar. It has also attained registration for extra 15 genetic strains of cannabis.

“We are thrilled to reach our 10 million customer milestone as we continue to provide dispensaries around the country with the most accurate tools to organically grow their businesses, increase retention, ROI and sales,” said Jeffrey Harris, Founder and CEO of springbig. „The latest sales statistics underscores the efficacy of springbig’s services and we look forward to integrating our innovative programs with new retailers next year as more states enter both the medicinal and recreational space.”

ACB) (TSX: ACB) announced plans to roll out vapes, concentrates and edibles, for sale starting in December.

BTTR), an animal health and wellness CBD company, said Wednesday it signed a definitive agreement to acquire holistic pet foods company Halo, Purely for Pets.

SOL Global’s ‚One Plant’ Brand found that its proprietary delivery model saw continued growth by 20% or more, week after week since July, making it one of the fastest growing delivery services for medicinal cannabis in Florida, despite having a single retail location.

„We outsold competitors who have over a dozen brick and mortar locations,” SOL Global CEO Brady Cobb told Benzinga. „This is a testament to the power of our home delivery model and how One Plant cuts right to profit.”

PLNHF), the world’s largest cannabis dispensary announced the opening of its Phase II expansion at its Las Vegas superstore. The 4,500 sq-ft restaurant/bistro/pizzeria and café, across the grand-entrance hall from the dispensary, seats 150 and features a greenhouse concept design that brings the outdoors inside.

“Planet 13 continues to set the standard for exceptional cannabis experiences giving visitors the ability to shop, eat and have fun all in one luxurious cannabis-themed complex,” said Larry Scheffler, Co-CEO of Planet 13. „The 3,000 plus daily visitors to our Cannabis Entertainment Complex can now have the option to enjoy a gourmet coffee and delicious food and walk across the hall to experience the best cannabis dispensary in the world.”

OILFF) announced that it entered into an agreement to consolidate Nextleaf Labs under the Nextleaf Solutions name. Nextleaf Labs, located in greater Vancouver, was granted a Standard Processor license earlier last month. Nextleaf Solutions currently holds eight issued patents relating to cannabinoids.

Paul Pedersen told Benzinga, „We’re thrilled to expand our operations as we move towards developing and acquiring additional patents pertaining to industrial-scale extraction, purification, and formulation of THC and CBD. As we get into the next wave of legalization, we’re proud to power the technology behind many of these 2.0 products such as infused beverages and vapes.”

Check out the top stories on Benzinga Cannabis this week:

  • 4Front Ventures President Talks Parallels Between Cannabis Advocacy, Entrepreneurship
  • Judge Jeanine And CBD: Rise In Cannabis Opportunities Leads To Head-Scratching Partnerships
  • Is Cannabis The Liquor Industry’s Worst Nightmare?
  • Bulls And Bud Of The Week: Preparing For A Cannabis Stock Rebound And Getting Creative With A gen!us Jack Herer
  • How Is Legal Cannabis Changing Workplace Drug Testing?
  • CBD And Professional Sports: Where Do The US And The Rest Of The World Stand?
  • Positioning CBD Businesses For Success
  • All The Announcements From The Annual California Cannabis Business Conference
  • Benzinga Cannabis Managing Director Javier Hasse To Speak At CLAB Conference In Miami, Oct. 28-29
  • SAFE Banking Act Could Be In Danger In The Senate
  • Benzinga Cannabis’ Andrew Ward To Speak At The Mannada Cannabis Media Summit: Follow The Money In NYC
  • ‚The Science Is There’: A Former Green Beret On How Cannabis Can Help Veterans With PTSD
  • CollegeHumor’s DROPOUT TV To Debut Season 2 Of Cannabis-Themed Game Show ‚Paranoia’
  • Takeaways From The World’s Largest Cannabis Public Health Forum
  • Study: Cannabis Customers Visit Dispensaries Roughly Once A Week, Prefer Weekdays

Oct. 23: Vangst will be participating in Santa Rita Jail Re-Entry Job & Resource Fair to help inmates who are eager and ready to be employed immediately or within the next six months. There will be 100 inmates and up to 20 employers participating in this job fair. Vangst will be the only cannabis employer at this event and will be there to discuss the different types of jobs that are available in the cannabis industry today. 

Oct. 24: Patients, advocates, business professionals, and the Midwest community is invited to learn more about the budding cannabis industry at Sensible Minnesota’s 3rd Annual Minnesota Cannabis Summit. The event will take place at the Anderson Center of Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Oct.25–27: Humble Bloom is offering its HB Field Trip, a weekend retreat at Aster Farms and Lodge at Blue Lakes, in beautiful Lake County, California. “Aster is excited to celebrate the harvest with the amazing community assembled by Humble Bloom,” says Sam Ludwig president of Aster Farms. “Spreading the word on sustainability, responsible farming, health and wellness is a pillar of our company and we look forward to educating and sharing out knowledge to guests, colleagues and the community.”

Bill Turnbull wants to overcome his cancer with CBD and Cannabis – TheCannabisRadar

Bill Turnbull wants to overcome his cancer with CBD and Cannabis

Bill Turnbull was recently found video documenting a breach of law and that is related to CBD. The former BBC Breakfast news presenter was caught in a film in which he was seen experimenting with new concoctions to find that perfect treatment for prostate cancer. The 63-year-old has made a mixture of cannabis oil during Channel 4’s Bill Turnbull: Staying alive which contained CBD but with the THC Compound which is illegal. 

The film also captures his sacrifice of meat and his transition into a complete teetotaler. His feeling of positivity and radiance was visible in the film. He also said that he is doing his best to understand how cancer is stabilized and it is quite possible that even a cure could come out of his experiments.

CBD has taken the market by storm. Almost everyone in the country now loves it, hates it or is curious to know about it. CBD or cannabidiol is a hemp-extracted substance which has anti-inflammatory properties. CBD is different from marijuana in the sense that it has THC levels less than 0.3% which is what the legal limit also is. Marijuana’s THC levels are very high and are included in the controlled substances in many countries. When the user smokes pot or weed he or she gets addicted to the substance and gets a high which the user gets used to.

After Bill’s experience and contact with people, he is appealing to the government to pour in more funds to conduct proper research on cannabis. It is high time that cannabis with a lower THC level is now included in the medical field without bias. It is the right time to understand what benefits cannabis brings to the table. It has a lot of medicinal benefits which needs to be brought in the forefront. 

Bill also informed that cannabis is legal in 20 countries. These countries would have seen some benefits in it why they have made it legal are. He then questions the government’s decision to hold back on legalizing CBD and cannabis in the truest form. 

CBD and cannabis is not something new because it has around for more than 1000 years but its illegality has only been here for a century. The opportunity cost of letting something stay illegal and in the background could be high because by hiding it, people are bereft of several benefits which they can enjoy. 

A lot of importance in the last two years is being given to CBD because of the amazing benefits people have experienced. CBD infused drugs has been credited for treating seizures and easing the symptoms of epilepsy and cancer. It is also regarded as the miracle drug because it has been helpful for Arthritis patients. People taking time to recover from accidents also have felt that they have recovered faster than usual. Sports professionals also have resorted to CBD for muscle soreness and pain management. The versatile substance has helped emotionally stressed patients to feel happier about their existence. 

Bill was diagnosed with cancer in 2018 and was going through chemotherapy sessions. He is now adamant that he can fight the disease with other alternative methods available. His trigger to use cannabis was after he witnessed the astounding resurgence and recovery of a 14-year-old cancer patient Deryn Blackwell. His recovery was due to cannabis oil which he took for pain relief.

Bill also visits Cannabis grower Jeff Ditchfield who has been growing cannabis and also giving it to people who need it for medical reasons. Jeff had been arrested for about 20 times for his service.

Jeff also gave his share of warning to Bill about the usage of CBD which is illegal under the misuse of drugs act, but Bill informed him that it is only for medicinal reasons that CBD is used. Bill highlighted that when such a beneficial substance is made illegal, it is very difficult for the user to understand how much he has to take. The benefits and the ban are in actuality conflicting forces and needs to be corrected. Bill believes that many people are in the dark due to this, yet the situation remains the same. 

Bill currently has stopped taking THC but is continuing with CBD. He wants to give a little break to things and remain to put until some new guidance dawns up. His Prostate-specific antigen levels are increasing by the day yet he seems better than before. He has given up drinking and also intends to embrace laughter therapy to keep things on the brighter side. He believes that one has to put a hold on how things are going rather than the thing taking you down. 

In the film, his wife and three children also appear and he is happy that he has a family which shows him support at this stage. 

Currently, his focus is to rid himself of this disease. He wants to get treated and will continue experimenting until he gets what he wants.

Hogansburg man charged with cannabis candy and THC oil – NNY360

MASSENA — State police on Oct. 9 charged Dawson L. George, 21, of 77 Oakes Road, Hogansburg, with misdemeanor seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. He was also cited with second-degree unlawful possession of marijuana.

Troopers said at 8:48 p.m. on Oct. 9 at the Massena Point of Entry, Customs and Border Protection Agents found Mr. George in possession of cannabis gummy candy and THC oil.

Mr. George was issued tickets returnable to Town Court.

New group coming up with initiative to legalize marijuana – ABC15 Arizona

PHOENIX — Marijuana has not even been legalized for adult use yet in Arizona, but a battle is already brewing between two factions of the pro-recreational marijuana community.

On one side you have large scale operations, on the other are smaller pot producers and with billions of dollars potentially up for grabs, a lot is at stake for those in the industry and consumers.

At the center of the debate, is control. Whoever controls the money, has control of the industry, of products that will be placed on store shelves, and on possible future legislation that will govern the industry.

The Arizona Dispensary Association or ADA is butting heads with a newly formed group called the Arizona Cannabis Chamber of Commerce over who will get to sell the product.

„Right now we’re letting the industry write the language,” said Mason Cave, chairman of the AZ Cannabis Chamber of Commerce. He added that the Smart and Safe Initiative the ADA had come up with would mean that only those players who already had their foot in the door, and operated medical marijuana clinics could stay in the game and continue to grow, at the expense of allowing new players in to a booming industry.

„We would like to see opportunity for new players to come into the market places,” said Cave.

The group hoped to work with Arizona lawmakers to come up with a different strategy, one that would allow newcomers into the industry, instead of giving more power and control to established „big dog” companies like Harvest Health and Recreation and Curaleaf that owned the most number of licenses in Arizona.

„If we don’t allow small business to participate then we remove green rush from the opportunity of the general public,” said Cave.

Susan Hwang, the owner of Jamestown Center and Nirvana Center dispensaries said even though business owners like her stood to gain from the Smart and Safe initiative, she had a problem with it. Being an immigrant who started her own company, she welcomed the American spirit of competition and entrepreneurship.

„It wouldn’t be fair for me to not support those who want to have opportunities and those who want a fair shot at applying for these business licenses,” said Hwang.

ABC15 reached out to the Arizona Dispensary Association to find out if their model stifled newcomers from entering the industry.

„That is fundamentally untrue,” said Stacy Pearson, a spokeswoman for the campaign. She said newcomers would be welcomed into the industry through their proposed initiative, but in stages and in a more controlled manner.

„It will allow dispensaries that are already in good standing to start selling quickly,” added Pearson. She pointed to California, where it took too long for dispensaries to start selling the product, thus creating a black market for the product as it was already legal.

Pearson also said they had spent a lot of time polling people in Arizona, and their polls showed that if Marijuana became legal for recreational use in Arizona, most voters did not want marijuana products shoved in their faces.

„Our policy is truly the best policy for Arizona. The Arizona voter does not want dispensaries on every street corner, like a K-Mart. They don’t want marijuana being sold at every convenience store they walk into. Many of them are okay with recreational marijuana as long as it’s out of sight, and out of mind,” said Pearson.

The Cannabis Chamber of commerce also had a problem with the current tax rate on marijuana, which would be about 25 percent when combined with the state sales tax. Cave worried that could push consumers into the black market to find cheaper marijuana.

Pearson said they had studied the tax models in other states, and the one they were proposing was ideal for Arizona.

Commentary: Is THC vaping the new Typhoid Mary? – Salt Lake Tribune

The recent “outbreak” of lung injuries reported nationwide has become a cause for concern, and health officials in Utah are pointing the blame at THC, a component of cannabis. The media spotlight and government alarm bells, however, seem a bit out of balance.

Remember Typhoid Mary? In the early 1900s, she was a New York City cook for seven different families. A woman in seemingly perfect health, the families she served contracted typhoid fever as she went from one to the next. Though she infected only a few dozen people in total, she was forced to spend nearly three decades in quarantine and became a popular sensation due to the controversy and fear.

Imagine how absurd it would have been for the government, in response to the typhoid problem, to suggest that people not hire cooks, let alone eat. This would have been a clear overreaction to a minor, isolated set of incidents.

But history clearly shows that we’re prone to overreact to things that sound scary and cause a few people harm, whether it’s the Disneyland measles epidemic, the Ebola scare, salmonella-laced spinach or so many more situations.

This appears to be the case with the vaping concerns in Utah. According to the government, a Utah resident who died last week was killed due to vaping. But they’re not revealing any other information about the person — their name, age, gender, location, etc.

Well, that’s not entirely true. The state epidemiologist, Dr. Angela Dunn, did manage to reveal that “THC cartridges were found on the death scene and THC was also found in the blood of this individual.”

The inference being made is that THC can kill you, else why go to such great lengths to describe the past THC possession and use?

This is hardly a scientific conclusion, and we believe it’s irresponsible of a public health official to be scaring the public on this basis alone. Indeed, Dunn further opined that, “The only way to protect yourself is to not vape THC.”

But the state’s own data don’t support this conclusion. In their detailed report on the issue, officials note that “since many patients self-reported the use of multiple products, [we were] unable to identify which product or products may have led to illness.”

They’re pointing blame broadly at THC, while the vast majority of these black market oils also had Vitamin E acetate, a cutting agent that should not be inhaled. Thousands of Utahns are vaping THC oil (without Vitamin E acetate) just fine — to say nothing of those vaping THC-rich cannabis flower, which also continues to be safe.

THC isn’t the problem. Something else is.

Public health is critical, and good information is imperative. But making broad recommendations against THC use is speculative at best and fear-mongering at worst. Indeed, the problem is so statistically small right now, in terms of the population of overall vape users, that it’s akin to telling people that the only way to protect yourself from getting in a car crash is to not drive. A problem experienced by a few does not suggest that the many will suffer the same fate — whether we’re talking about Typhoid Mary or some THC.

There are already some strident voices calling for banning vaping, at least among youth, based on these lung injuries. Before further overreaction, we need better understanding. This problem deserves a policy scalpel, not a political sledgehammer.

Rahm Emanuel once suggested that political operatives should “never let a good crisis go to waste.” We who care about patients being able to use THC medicinally, especially by aspirating it with a vaping device, must resist those who would exploit this statistically insignificant issue.

Of course, just because it’s statistically insignificant doesn’t mean it’s insignificant on its face. More investigation is merited to better understand what is happening, how to help those affected, and prevent it from recurring.

As a people, we scare easily. But THC is medicine for many in Utah, and the vaping method of administration is essential. Further, we’re on the cusp of launching a new medical cannabis industry in Utah — one that will be highly regulated, with THC products being heavily tested and inspected.

If black market products are to blame, as officials suggest, then banning regulated products is hardly the answer. Doing so will simply push people back into the black market, where they face potentially contaminated mixtures that lab testing and regulatory oversight — features of a legal market — could eliminate.

With compassion for those affected, we suggest a measure of prudence as we wait for more information about the true cause of these lung injuries in order to make evidence-based decisions. At this point, telling people not to vape medical cannabis is alarmist and premature. We’re smarter than that.

Connor Boyack

Connor Boyack is president of the Libertas Institute.

Desiree Hennessy

Desiree Hennessy is executive director of the Utah Patients Coalition.

PGA Tour golfer Matt Every says cannabis cause of 3-month suspension for drugs of abuse – USA TODAY

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Matt Every was suspended for 12 weeks Friday for what the PGA Tour said was a violation of its conduct policy on drugs of abuse. Every said it was legal prescription for cannabis to treat mental health. 

„To be clear, I tested positive for cannabis, a drug I do not abuse and a drug that I have a legal prescription for in the state of Florida,” Every said in a statement.

Every will be eligible to return Jan. 7 and will miss only three tournaments for which he would have been eligible — the Bermuda Championship, the Mayakoba Classic in Mexico and the RSM Classic at Sea Island.

Every said he knew cannabis was on the tour’s list of banned substances and accepts the penalties. But he offered no apologies for the violation.

Every, a two-time winner at Bay Hill, did not disclose the nature of the mental health condition. He says cannabis, which is legal in Florida only for medicinal purposes, was prescribed by his doctor who has managed his health for 30 years.

He said it was determined that he is neither an acceptable candidate to use prescription „Z” class drugs nor benzodiazepines, drugs he said could be highly addictive and harmful to the body and mind.

„For me, cannabis has proven to be, by far, the safest and most effective treatment,” Every said. „With that being said, I have no choice but to accept this suspension and move on. I knew what WADA’s policy was and I violated it. I don’t agree with it for many reasons, mainly for my overall well-being, but I’m excited for what lies ahead in my life and career.”

The PGA Tour does not comment beyond standard reporting of violations detected through its anti-doping policy, which began in 2008.

Every is the seventh player to be suspended under the policy, not including Vijay Singh, whose suspension was withdrawn. Singh later sued the tour and it was settled before going to trial.

Before his back-to-back victories at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Every was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of drug possession after agents were called to a casino hotel because of a strong odor of marijuana coming from the room he was in. Every said he was in the wrong place at the wrong time, though confirmed the tour suspended him for three months.