Cannabis and driving study casts doubt on zero-tolerance limits for THC – Global News

People using a driving simulator showed no signs of impairment a day after they smoked cannabis, though they still tested positive for THC, its main psychoactive component, a recently-published paper says.

The research has implications for laws and workplace rules that require no trace of THC, which Scott Macdonald, a retired professor at the University of Victoria, calls “not scientific.”

“I consider it one of the biggest myths about cannabis, that there are 24-hour hangover effects that are measurable,” he said.  “When people smoke cannabis, they’re only impaired for a short, short period of time. You could have THC in your bloodstream, but you’re not a danger.”

Study looks into the effect of cannabis on driving

Study looks into the effect of cannabis on driving

Researchers at the Toronto-based Centre for Addiction and Mental Health gave participants 10 minutes to smoke cannabis to a level they chose, then tested them in a driving simulator.

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Because they were allowed to control their own consumption, THC blood levels in the group varied. They ranged from zero to 42 nanograms per millilitre, which would be nearly 10 times the legal limit to drive.

READ MORE: How long does cannabis stay in your system?

The driving simulator’s scenario involved a nine-kilometre drive on a stretch of rural highway signed at 80 km/h, with a few simple problems to solve, such as a slow-moving vehicle.

Immediately after smoking, the THC group showed signs of impairment, centring the imaginary car poorly in its lane and driving inappropriately slowly.

But in further tests 24 and 48 hours later, they still had detectable levels of THC, but performed normally in the driving simulator.

“We found significant evidence of difference in driver behaviour, heart rate and self-reported drug effects 30 minutes after smoking cannabis, but … we found little evidence to support residual effects,” the authors wrote.

The study shows that similarly to alcohol, cannabis impairment disappears within a day of consumption at most, if not much earlier.

However, THC can keep showing up on tests long after any impairment has ended — unlike alcohol, which would stop being detectable as impairment went away.

CAMH spokesperson: Cannabis use should be delayed as long as possible

CAMH spokesperson: Cannabis use should be delayed as long as possible

“The biological tests are not useful for identifying people that represent a safety risk,” Macdonald says. “What we’re left with is behavioural symptoms. We’re still working on developing tests to assess whether an individual who consumes cannabis is a safety risk. It’s hard to do.

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“Cannabis is not in the same class as alcohol, in terms of safety risk. Alcohol is much, much worse.”

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Several provinces forbid young or new drivers from having any detectable levels of THC.

In Ontario, for example, drivers violating a zero-tolerance rule for THC face a three-day licence suspension, $250 fine and $281 licence reinstatement fee for the first offence. Penalties increase for repeat offenders.

Saskatchewan took what may be Canada’s strictest approach: new drivers in the province with any level at all of THC face a 60-day licence suspension, a three-day vehicle seizure and four demerit points. A young driver can face serious consequences for driving on THC.

Ontario’s transport ministry defends the policy.

Stoned behind the wheel? Study underway looks at effects of cannabis on driving

Stoned behind the wheel? Study underway looks at effects of cannabis on driving

“In October 2018, the Canadian Society of Forensic Science released a report stating that impairment from cannabis begins almost immediately and can last up to six hours or more, depending on factors such as THC levels and how it is consumed,” spokesperson Kristine Bunker wrote in an e-mailed response.

“Since the effects of cannabis vary, there is no way to know exactly how long to wait before it is safe for you to drive.”

Zero- tolerance rules work as a “back-handed way of prohibiting cannabis use for young people,” argues Jenna Valleriani, executive director of Hope for Health Canada. 

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“Most young people drive, and have day to day responsibilities like school and work, so when we have data demonstrating that individuals would test over the limits 24 and 48 hours after use, this does little to make our roads safer from impaired drivers and deserves a reassessment,” she wrote in an exchange of e-mails.

“Driving is a privilege, but at the same time, cannabis is legal now, and young people over the age of access should be able to consume on the weekend and drive one full day later to work or school without risking a DUI charge.”

READ MORE: Zero-tolerance THC restrictions for new drivers open to Charter challenge: lawyer

Driving under the influence of cannabis

Driving under the influence of cannabis

Across Canada, some police forces have effectively banned cannabis for their own members.

Police in Montreal are allowed to consume on their own time, so long as they show up for work “fit for duty.”

But Toronto police and the RCMP ban officers from consuming less than 28 days before reporting for duty, while Calgary police officers are forbidden to consume at all. (Since THC can be detected up to 28 days after consumption, these policies are more or less the same.)

Police unions in Toronto and Calgary objected to the policy when it was announced, with Toronto’s calling it “ill-contrived” and “arbitrary,”  and Calgary’s saying that members had said they were “certainly not really happy with the idea of my employer telling me what I can and cannot do with a legal substance on my own time.’”

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“I think [28-day bans] are excessive and not scientifically based, especially now that cannabis is legal,” Macdonald says. “If cannabis was illegal, I could see it from that perspective. It’s not scientifically based in terms of them being a risk for the public if they’ve used cannabis in the last 28 days.”

Toronto police are open to revisiting the 28-day ban, spokesperson Const. Victor Kwong wrote in an e-mail.

“(The rule) was made thoughtfully and based on sound advice and evidence, considering the critical role members play in ensuring a safe workplace and a safe community. We will continue to research and explore this procedure. If at any time there is new science or research to cause us to re-evaluate our processes, we will do so.”

A B.C. labour arbitrator recently ruled against TransLink, the Vancouver-area transit authority, over its handling of an employee’s positive test for THC.

David Solomon, a train attendant, was forced to undergo drug tests twice a month for a year, despite a doctor’s opinion that his cannabis use wasn’t a problem. Solomon had to call the testing service daily to find out whether he was going to have a test that day or not, and go to a lab to be tested if the answer was yes.

READ MORE: TransLink ordered to stop drug testing pot-smoking SkyTrain attendant

The military allows cannabis use at some times for some members, depending on their jobs. Some, like divers, aircrew, members of submarine crews and drone operators, have a 28-day prohibition similar to the more restrictive police forces.

“Many jobs — typically those which are safety sensitive — have adopted a zero tolerance policy, but as cannabis becomes more integrated into society, we’re going to need to consider policies that are reflective of this change and embrace a better understanding of cannabis and its effects,” Valleriani wrote.

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“Some jobs require drug and alcohol tests as a condition of employment, but it begs the question of how workplaces can manage the risk of impairment without an accurate measure of it.”

The study was published this week in the Journal of Drug and Alcohol Dependence. Macdonald was not involved with it.

During the study, a placebo group was given joints with no THC to smoke, but it turned out that participants were well aware of whether they had consumed THC or not, with over 90 per cent in both groups accurately saying what group they were in.

When they were asked whether they would be comfortable driving a real car, 80 per cent of the placebo group said they would, as opposed to under 30 per cent in the THC group.

“It has the biggest sample size of any sample that I know of,” Macdonald said of the study’s 91 participants.

CAMH and Health Canada, where the study’s lead author works, did not make anybody available for an interview.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

THC lingers long after its effects are gone | Watch News Videos Online – Globalnews.ca

December 11 2019 6:00am

An expert on cannabis intoxication explains why he sees zero-tolerance limits for THC as “excessive and not scientifically based.”

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He Started Vaping THC To Cope With Chronic Pain. Then He Got Sick – KPBS

Photo caption: Paul Lubell used to vape medical marijuana to manage his chronic back and nec...

As vaping has grown more popular in recent years, the trend has been fueled by the habit’s pleasurable allure: Compared with smoking cigarettes or pot, vaping is discrete and less smelly. Vaping fluids come in hundreds of flavors. There’s no tar or other byproducts of burning. And vape pens are high-tech, customizable and sleek.

But none of that mattered to Paul Lubell when he decided to try vaping. He wasn’t thinking about pleasure; he was just trying to avoid pain. The retired Navy veteran turned to vaping marijuana, hoping it would help him cope with his chronic, debilitating musculoskeletal pain.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t long before he became part of the national statistics tracking an outbreak of vaping-related lung illness that has killed four dozen Americans and sickened more than 2,200. Lubell ended up in the hospital, seriously ill from vaping an oily liquid containing extracts of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

Lubell, who lives in the Cleveland suburb of Beachwood, is older than most of those who have contracted what is now being called „e-cigarette or vaping associated lung injury,” or EVALI.

Three-quarters of patients with the condition have been under age 35; Lubell is 59.

But like patients in the majority of those cases, he used THC. And the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that it’s some added ingredient in THC vapes — likely vitamin E acetate — that is causing the lung disease. The CDC is warning people to stop vaping altogether, given the risk of lung illness, which puts people who vape to manage pain in a tough position.

„My pain would be gone”

Lubell suffers from pain in his back, neck and knees. He is not sure when his problems started, but he wonders if they are related to his days on a Navy helicopter rescue team.

„It was fun. I was indestructible and good at what I did. Everybody wanted me,” he recalls, while looking at photos of his much younger self posing on top of one of the helicopters.

Lubell sometimes jumped out of the helicopter and smacked into the water during training and rescue missions. That could have been the genesis of some of his back pain, he says.

Lubell has had two back surgeries, and he also suffers from serious neck pain.

Every day is a struggle, he says.

Looking for relief, he has tried many medications, including opioids such as hydrocodone, but that drug is no longer an option. Lubell is a patient at Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, and in the wake of the national opioid addiction epidemic, the VA has revised its pain-treatment protocols.

„The VA is not a friend of opioids at all,” Lubell says. „Unless you’re coming out of the hospital for surgery or something like that. They do not give vets opioids.”

„It leaves someone who is in chronic pain in a very tough situation, having to decide how to deal with it,” he adds.

Lubell started using an electronic cigarette device paired with prefilled THC cartridges. Medical marijuana is legal in Ohio, as it is in 33 other states, plus the District of Columbia. When Lubell vaped, the pain went away quickly, he says.

„When I say it took away pain — it was almost instantaneous,” he says. „Within the span of 10 minutes, my pain would be gone.”

Lubell knows that it was not a cure for the underlying problem. „[The pain] may have been masked, but it made me capable of doing my daily activities,” he says.

Lubell describes his old vaping cartridges as tiny sticks that screwed on top of the vaping pen. When he inhaled at one end of the pen, it pulled the THC extract and other liquids in the cartridge over a heating element.

When he let go of the pen and exhaled, he could see a cloud in the air, but that was different from when he had smoked marijuana, Lubell says.

It doesn’t have a stench to it. You could do it out on the streets. It doesn’t have that — what’s the word I’m looking for? — stigma,” he says.

Hospitalized with cough and fever

Lubell purchased the THC cartridges from a friend at what he described as a below-market price. A few months later, in July, Lubell started running a very high fever and went to the Cleveland VA Medical Center.

„He had this cough that was persistent. He just looked very, very sick,” recalls Dr. Amy Hise, who was on the team of physicians that treated Lubell.

He was put on very strong broad-spectrum antibiotics, and yet he continued to have fevers. He continued to feel unwell. He had very flu-like symptoms,” Hise says.

After a few days, Lubell seemed to improve and was released, according to Hise. But then, he grew ill again.

Hise says she was surprised when he came back to the emergency department in late August.

By then, however, she had seen a new alert from the CDC about the vaping illness. Lubell had also seen reports in the media about health problems related to vaping.

„He was forthright that he had been vaping, and indeed what had happened is when he was in the hospital before, he’d stopped vaping,” Hise says. „He stopped for a period of time until he started to feel better. And then he started it up again, and that’s when his lung disease came back.”

The doctors at the VA switched tactics, taking Lubell off antibiotics and starting him on steroids, based on information provided by the CDC. Lubell was soon released and on the road to recovery.

No more vaping

Even though vaping eased his pain, those two bouts of respiratory sickness were too much. Lubell says he won’t vape again.

Hise agrees with that decision.

„I think there’s just too much that’s not known about what’s in these products to safely use them,” she says.

But Lubell is not alone in having turned to marijuana for pain management. Dr. Melinda Lawrence, a pain management specialist at University Hospitals, says many patients have told her that they are trying marijuana to see if it will help.

„That is probably something that I get from patients every day,” Lawrence says. „And it’s not just people who are young, in their 20s. [There are] people in their 80s who are telling me they are looking to try anything to help with their pain.”

Even though some patients say marijuana helps their pain, there is not enough research to prove that it’s broadly and reliably effective, Lawrence says.

„Personally, I don’t recommend it for my patients. But maybe after we have more studies, it can be something in the future” she adds.

Lubell, who has an Ohio medical marijuana card, is still planning to use marijuana — but he won’t vape it. He turned over his equipment and leftover THC cartridges to health officials for analysis.

This story comes from NPR’s partnership with Cleveland’s ideastream and Kaiser Health News.

Copyright 2019 90.3 WCPN ideastream. To see more, visit 90.3 WCPN ideastream.

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When Vaping Marijuana For Chronic Pain Leads To Lung Illness : Shots – Health News – NPR

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He Started Vaping THC To Cope With Chronic Pain. Then He Got Sick – WFUV News

Mary Fecteau

by

Marlene Harris-Taylor

12.11.19 5:01am

As vaping has grown more popular in recent years, the trend has been fueled by the habit’s pleasurable allure: Compared with smoking cigarettes or pot, vaping is discrete and less smelly. Vaping fluids come in hundreds of flavors. There’s no tar or other byproducts of burning. And vape pens are high-tech, customizable and sleek.

But none of that mattered to Paul Lubell when he decided to try vaping. He wasn’t thinking about pleasure; he was just trying to avoid pain. The retired Navy veteran turned to vaping marijuana, hoping it would help him cope with his chronic, debilitating musculoskeletal pain.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t long before he became part of the national statistics tracking an outbreak of vaping-related lung illness that has killed four dozen Americans and sickened more than 2,200. Lubell ended up in the hospital, seriously ill from vaping an oily liquid containing extracts of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

Lubell, who lives in the Cleveland suburb of Beachwood, is older than most of those who have contracted what is now being called „e-cigarette or vaping associated lung injury,” or EVALI.

Three-quarters of patients with the condition have been under age 35; Lubell is 59.

But like patients in the majority of those cases, he used THC. And the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that it’s some added ingredient in THC vapes — likely vitamin E acetate — that is causing the lung disease. The CDC is warning people to stop vaping altogether, given the risk of lung illness, which puts people who vape to manage pain in a tough position.

„My pain would be gone”

Lubell suffers from pain in his back, neck and knees. He is not sure when his problems started, but he wonders if they are related to his days on a Navy helicopter rescue team.

„It was fun. I was indestructible and good at what I did. Everybody wanted me,” he recalls, while looking at photos of his much younger self posing on top of one of the helicopters.

Lubell sometimes jumped out of the helicopter and smacked into the water during training and rescue missions. That could have been the genesis of some of his back pain, he says.

Lubell has had two back surgeries, and he also suffers from serious neck pain.

Every day is a struggle, he says.

Looking for relief, he has tried many medications, including opioids such as hydrocodone, but that drug is no longer an option. Lubell is a patient at Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, and in the wake of the national opioid addiction epidemic, the VA has revised its pain-treatment protocols.

„The VA is not a friend of opioids at all,” Lubell says. „Unless you’re coming out of the hospital for surgery or something like that. They do not give vets opioids.”

„It leaves someone who is in chronic pain in a very tough situation, having to decide how to deal with it,” he adds.

Lubell started using an electronic cigarette device paired with prefilled THC cartridges. Medical marijuana is legal in Ohio, as it is in 33 other states, plus the District of Columbia. When Lubell vaped, the pain went away quickly, he says.

„When I say it took away pain — it was almost instantaneous,” he says. „Within the span of 10 minutes, my pain would be gone.”

Lubell knows that it was not a cure for the underlying problem. „[The pain] may have been masked, but it made me capable of doing my daily activities,” he says.

Lubell describes his old vaping cartridges as tiny sticks that screwed on top of the vaping pen. When he inhaled at one end of the pen, it pulled the THC extract and other liquids in the cartridge over a heating element.

When he let go of the pen and exhaled, he could see a cloud in the air, but that was different from when he had smoked marijuana, Lubell says.

It doesn’t have a stench to it. You could do it out on the streets. It doesn’t have that — what’s the word I’m looking for? — stigma,” he says.

Hospitalized with cough and fever

Lubell purchased the THC cartridges from a friend at what he described as a below-market price. A few months later, in July, Lubell started running a very high fever and went to the Cleveland VA Medical Center.

„He had this cough that was persistent. He just looked very, very sick,” recalls Dr. Amy Hise, who was on the team of physicians that treated Lubell.

He was put on very strong broad-spectrum antibiotics, and yet he continued to have fevers. He continued to feel unwell. He had very flu-like symptoms,” Hise says.

After a few days, Lubell seemed to improve and was released, according to Hise. But then, he grew ill again.

Hise says she was surprised when he came back to the emergency department in late August.

By then, however, she had seen a new alert from the CDC about the vaping illness. Lubell had also seen reports in the media about health problems related to vaping.

„He was forthright that he had been vaping, and indeed what had happened is when he was in the hospital before, he’d stopped vaping,” Hise says. „He stopped for a period of time until he started to feel better. And then he started it up again, and that’s when his lung disease came back.”

The doctors at the VA switched tactics, taking Lubell off antibiotics and starting him on steroids, based on information provided by the CDC. Lubell was soon released and on the road to recovery.

No more vaping

Even though vaping eased his pain, those two bouts of respiratory sickness were too much. Lubell says he won’t vape again.

Hise agrees with that decision.

„I think there’s just too much that’s not known about what’s in these products to safely use them,” she says.

But Lubell is not alone in having turned to marijuana for pain management. Dr. Melinda Lawrence, a pain management specialist at University Hospitals, says many patients have told her that they are trying marijuana to see if it will help.

„That is probably something that I get from patients every day,” Lawrence says. „And it’s not just people who are young, in their 20s. [There are] people in their 80s who are telling me they are looking to try anything to help with their pain.”

Even though some patients say marijuana helps their pain, there is not enough research to prove that it’s broadly and reliably effective, Lawrence says.

„Personally, I don’t recommend it for my patients. But maybe after we have more studies, it can be something in the future” she adds.

Lubell, who has an Ohio medical marijuana card, is still planning to use marijuana — but he won’t vape it. He turned over his equipment and leftover THC cartridges to health officials for analysis.

This story comes from NPR’s partnership with Cleveland’s ideastream and Kaiser Health News.

He Started Vaping THC To Cope With Chronic Pain. Then He Got Sick | NPR – KCRW

As vaping has grown more popular in recent years, the trend has been fueled by the habit’s pleasurable allure: Compared with smoking cigarettes or pot, vaping is discrete and less smelly. Vaping fluids come in hundreds of flavors. There’s no tar or other byproducts of burning. And vape pens are high-tech, customizable and sleek.

But none of that mattered to Paul Lubell when he decided to try vaping. He wasn’t thinking about pleasure; he was just trying to avoid pain. The retired Navy veteran turned to vaping marijuana, hoping it would help him cope with his chronic, debilitating musculoskeletal pain.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t long before he became part of the national statistics tracking an outbreak of vaping-related lung illness that has killed four dozen Americans and sickened more than 2,200. Lubell ended up in the hospital, seriously ill from vaping an oily liquid containing extracts of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

Lubell, who lives in the Cleveland suburb of Beachwood, is older than most of those who have contracted what is now being called „e-cigarette or vaping associated lung injury,” or EVALI.

Three-quarters of patients with the condition have been under age 35; Lubell is 59.

But like patients in the majority of those cases, he used THC. And the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that it’s some added ingredient in THC vapes — likely vitamin E acetate — that is causing the lung disease. The CDC is warning people to stop vaping altogether, given the risk of lung illness, which puts people who vape to manage pain in a tough position.

„My pain would be gone”

Lubell suffers from pain in his back, neck and knees. He is not sure when his problems started, but he wonders if they are related to his days on a Navy helicopter rescue team.

„It was fun. I was indestructible and good at what I did. Everybody wanted me,” he recalls, while looking at photos of his much younger self posing on top of one of the helicopters.

Lubell sometimes jumped out of the helicopter and smacked into the water during training and rescue missions. That could have been the genesis of some of his back pain, he says.

Lubell has had two back surgeries, and he also suffers from serious neck pain.

Every day is a struggle, he says.

Looking for relief, he has tried many medications, including opioids such as hydrocodone, but that drug is no longer an option. Lubell is a patient at Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, and in the wake of the national opioid addiction epidemic, the VA has revised its pain-treatment protocols.

„The VA is not a friend of opioids at all,” Lubell says. „Unless you’re coming out of the hospital for surgery or something like that. They do not give vets opioids.”

„It leaves someone who is in chronic pain in a very tough situation, having to decide how to deal with it,” he adds.

Lubell started using an electronic cigarette device paired with prefilled THC cartridges. Medical marijuana is legal in Ohio, as it is in 33 other states, plus the District of Columbia. When Lubell vaped, the pain went away quickly, he says.

„When I say it took away pain — it was almost instantaneous,” he says. „Within the span of 10 minutes, my pain would be gone.”

Lubell knows that it was not a cure for the underlying problem. „[The pain] may have been masked, but it made me capable of doing my daily activities,” he says.

Lubell describes his old vaping cartridges as tiny sticks that screwed on top of the vaping pen. When he inhaled at one end of the pen, it pulled the THC extract and other liquids in the cartridge over a heating element.

When he let go of the pen and exhaled, he could see a cloud in the air, but that was different from when he had smoked marijuana, Lubell says.

It doesn’t have a stench to it. You could do it out on the streets. It doesn’t have that — what’s the word I’m looking for? — stigma,” he says.

Hospitalized with cough and fever

Lubell purchased the THC cartridges from a friend at what he described as a below-market price. A few months later, in July, Lubell started running a very high fever and went to the Cleveland VA Medical Center.

„He had this cough that was persistent. He just looked very, very sick,” recalls Dr. Amy Hise, who was on the team of physicians that treated Lubell.

He was put on very strong broad-spectrum antibiotics, and yet he continued to have fevers. He continued to feel unwell. He had very flu-like symptoms,” Hise says.

After a few days, Lubell seemed to improve and was released, according to Hise. But then, he grew ill again.

Hise says she was surprised when he came back to the emergency department in late August.

By then, however, she had seen a new alert from the CDC about the vaping illness. Lubell had also seen reports in the media about health problems related to vaping.

„He was forthright that he had been vaping, and indeed what had happened is when he was in the hospital before, he’d stopped vaping,” Hise says. „He stopped for a period of time until he started to feel better. And then he started it up again, and that’s when his lung disease came back.”

The doctors at the VA switched tactics, taking Lubell off antibiotics and starting him on steroids, based on information provided by the CDC. Lubell was soon released and on the road to recovery.

No more vaping

Even though vaping eased his pain, those two bouts of respiratory sickness were too much. Lubell says he won’t vape again.

Hise agrees with that decision.

„I think there’s just too much that’s not known about what’s in these products to safely use them,” she says.

But Lubell is not alone in having turned to marijuana for pain management. Dr. Melinda Lawrence, a pain management specialist at University Hospitals, says many patients have told her that they are trying marijuana to see if it will help.

„That is probably something that I get from patients every day,” Lawrence says. „And it’s not just people who are young, in their 20s. [There are] people in their 80s who are telling me they are looking to try anything to help with their pain.”

Even though some patients say marijuana helps their pain, there is not enough research to prove that it’s broadly and reliably effective, Lawrence says.

„Personally, I don’t recommend it for my patients. But maybe after we have more studies, it can be something in the future” she adds.

Lubell, who has an Ohio medical marijuana card, is still planning to use marijuana — but he won’t vape it. He turned over his equipment and leftover THC cartridges to health officials for analysis.

This story comes from NPR’s partnership with Cleveland’s ideastream and Kaiser Health News.

500 Million Potential European CBD Consumers – Business Wire

WASHINGTON–()–New Frontier Data, the global authority in data, analytics and business intelligence for the cannabis industry, releases the EU CBD Consumer Report: 2019 Overview, in partnership with Deep Nature Project and Mile High Labs. Drawing from the most comprehensive survey to date, administered to over 3,000 individuals across 17 European nations, this first-of-its-kind report examines Europeans’ awareness of, and exposure to, cannabidiol (CBD), as well as reviews Europe’s overarching beliefs about CBD properties, its applications and possible policies.

“There are over 500 million potential CBD consumers in Europe, yet there is still little to no vetted information available to better define and understand this new consumer group and its nuanced behavior,” said New Frontier Data Founder & CEO Giadha Aguirre de Carcer. “The potential for CBD applications has expanded tremendously across Europe in just the past year, creating significant opportunities to build cross-continent brands. However, the successful development and launch of new CBD products will require a much deeper and more granular understanding of CBD consumption across not only age and gender groups, but across different countries in what is a very socio-economically and culturally diverse region.”

Key findings from the report include:

  • No single company has brand familiarity above 10% among European consumers – reflecting the immaturity and fragmentation of the market
  • 56% of respondents indicate they have heard of CBD, compared to 16% who report having used CBD or CBD products
  • The most frequently indicated reason for using CBD is pain management (40%), followed closely by relaxation (34%) and stress relief (31%)
  • 42% of CBD consumers report having replaced an over-the-counter medication with CBD
  • Nearly one-third (30%) of European consumers indicate spending more than €100 per month on CBD products
  • 35% of CBD consumers report getting at least some of their CBD from friends

The EU CBD Consumer Report: 2019 Overview is available for FREE Download at: https://newfrontierdata.com/product/the-eu-cbd-consumer-report/

About New Frontier Data:

New Frontier Data is an independent, technology-driven analytics company specializing in the cannabis industry. It offers vetted data, actionable business intelligence and risk management solutions for investors, operators, researchers and policy makers. New Frontier Data’s reports and data have been cited in over 80 countries around the world to inform industry leaders. Founded in 2014, New Frontier Data is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with additional offices in Denver, CO and London, UK.

New Frontier Data does not take a position on the merits of cannabis legalization. Rather, its mission and mandate are to inform cannabis-related policy and business decisions through rigorous, issue-neutral and comprehensive analysis of the legal cannabis industry worldwide. For more information about New Frontier Data, please visit: https://www.NewFrontierData.com.

California May Label THC a Risk for Pregnant Women – TIME

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CBD, THC, and the Hazy Boundaries of Product Labeling in the Cannabis Industry – Lexology

Cannabis is a dynamic plant with tens of thousands of known applications, from clothing and paper to food and medicine. While cannabis has been cultivated for many purposes over thousands of years, much of the recent attention has been on the chemical compounds that are predominant within certain species of the genus, most notably Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Of course, THC is known for producing the high that users experience when they smoke cannabis. CBD, on the other hand, does not produce a high effect but has been touted for many health benefits, including but not limited to pain relief, reducing anxiety and depression, easing cancer-related symptoms, treating acne, and fighting insomnia. While marijuana containing THC remains a federally-prohibited drug, CBD is now generally legal across all 50 states and is readily available in grocery stores, gas stations, pharmacies, and other legal businesses all over the country.

While THC and CBD are distinct compounds, the fact that they come from the same plant can create confusion and legal issues for both businesses and consumers. Natural conditions such as temperature, humidity, and soil acidity can affect the amount of cannabinoids in the plant, including the concentrations of THC and CBD. What has resulted is a legal and regulatory patchwork in which even minor chemical variations can have serious legal consequences.

For example, take the case of Douglas J. Horn, et al. v. Medical Marijuana, Inc., et al., 15 CV-701-FPG, currently pending in the United States District Court for the Western District of New York. In that case, a trucker was terminated by his employer because he failed a drug test after using a legal CBD oil that he claims was falsely advertised as being THC-free. The plaintiff subsequently brought suit against the CBD oil’s manufacturers and sellers under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO). In a recent decision in that case, Judge Frank P. Geraci reversed an April order in which the court held that the plaintiff’s RICO claim could proceed against the defendants on the ground that the CBD oil, at the time sold in 2012, constituted a controlled substance. That ruling was based on the fact that a RICO claim can be predicated on the distribution and sale of a controlled substance such as marijuana. In reversing that April order, the court cited a series of Ninth Circuit decisions for the proposition that the mere existence of naturally occurring THC does not render a product a controlled substance so long as it is derived from one of the federally-excepted parts of the cannabis plant, such as the mature stalks or other parts of the plant that are incapable of germination.

However, the court nonetheless determined that the plaintiff’s RICO claim could proceed against the defendants on a theory of mail and wire fraud, as RICO also makes it illegal for businesses to conduct or participate in a pattern of racketeering activity. Judge Geraci explained that there is evidence of the defendants claiming their CBD oil did not contain THC on their website, in YouTube videos, and through customer service representatives, despite the fact that testing revealed detectable amounts of THC. The court explained that the defendants’ act of promoting the product as THC-free in at least three different media was sufficient to conclude that those claims were not mere promotional puffery; rather, they were a fundamental selling point of the product. As a result of this ruling, the plaintiff may now proceed to trial on his RICO claim against the companies responsible for manufacturing and selling the CBD oil.