CBD Industry Soars in Wake of Farm Bill; Massive Growth Projected to Continue

CannabisNewsWire Editorial Coverage: Following the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD sales have continued their massive growth in the United States and beyond.

  • Cannabidiol (CBD), a chemical found in cannabis, has seen a huge growth in sales over the past few years.
  • CBD can be derived from hemp, and the passing of a new farm bill in the States makes this form of cultivation legal at a federal level.
  • This forms part of wider growth in the cannabis market, as companies expand their operations in North America and even beyond.

Wildflower Brands Inc. (CSE: SUN) (OTCQB: WLDFF) (WLDFF Profile) is among the companies benefiting from this market, with an increase of more than 300 percent in online sales for its CBD products last year. Some companies are specializing in particular niches, such as The Green Organic Dutchman (OTCQX: TGODF) (TSX: TGOD) with its focus on sustainable organic plants. Aurora Cannabis Inc. (NYSE: ACB) (TSX: ACB) is making moves into Europe, with cannabis oil sales in Germany and investment in a Portuguese grower. Green Growth Brands Inc. (OTCQB: GGBXF) (CSE: GGB) is launching new products and opening its own shops across the United States. And HEXO Corp. (NYSE: HEXO) (TSX: HEXO), which recently expanded from medical cannabis into…

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CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Demand Soars for Missouri Medical Cannabis Licenses

The cannabis bullet train doesn’t seem to be showing any signs of slowing down in Missouri ever since voters overwhelmingly passed a ballot measure in the recent midterms to legalize medical marijuana in the state. Now more than 300 businesses are due to be licensed to participate in the medical cannabis industry once it is commercialized.

This announcement was made by Lyndall Fraker, the Missouri Medical Marijuana Program Director, while speaking at a medical marijuana conference in St. Louis on Monday (March 11). He added that if those 300 licenses weren’t enough, then the state wouldn’t hesitate to grant more to the businesses that wish to serve Missouri patients in different capacities.

Already, more than 450 applications have been received from entities that would like to cultivate, manufacture, dispense or test medical marijuana and its products in the state. It is from this pool that the state will select the first 300 businesses to be licensed.

For now, the regulator has set the minimum number of players that will operate in the different segments of the medical marijuana industry. These include at least 192 dispensaries, two marijuana testing facilities, 85 manufacturing facilities and 60 marijuana cultivation facilities.

When added up, those figures exceed the 300 licenses that will be awarded initially, so you can see that the state already has plans for an extensive and robust medical cannabis industry.

You may be wondering, won’t 300 businesses be too many for an industry that is just being set up? This concern may be legitimate, but if anything is to be learnt from the Canadian recreational cannabis industry, it is risky to allow only a few players in the industry.

The cannabis shortages in Canada can largely be explained by the country’s failure to license enough businesses to participate in the different aspects of the cannabis value chain. The resulting mess will possibly take years to fix. Missouri may therefore be onto something when they start off with hundreds of licensed businesses.

Besides, not all of those 300 businesses will start operations at the same time. And when they do start, not all of them will be successful. Others will close shop while more will merge with other businesses.

It is therefore a good thing that the state intends to give all those businesses a shot and then their fate will be squarely in their hands once they get hold of a license. Green Growth Brands Inc. (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF), Green Hygienics Holdings Inc. (OTCQB: GRYN) and all who wish to invest in the medical cannabis industry welcome the steps being taken by the Missouri Medical Marijuana Program to do things right from the get-go.

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420 with CNW – US Federal Government Calls for Input on Marijuana Rescheduling

Following the recommendations by the World Health Organization (“WHO”) that whole-plant cannabis and its resin should be reclassified, the U.S. FDA has issued a notice asking interested parties to submit their views on this matter so that the position that the U.S. takes when the matter comes up for a vote at the UN is informed by the views collected.

While this is the third time that the federal government is asking stakeholders for input on marijuana rescheduling, it is the first time that they are doing so from the time WHO released its recommendations.

The World Health Organization observed that the evidence that was presented before its expert committee didn’t show that marijuana deserved to be in the same category as the other substances in Schedule IV of the treaty setting up guidelines on how various substances should be controlled internationally.

The UN body also made it clear that CBD, one of components of cannabis, should not be subjected to any international controls.

Additionally, the World Health Organization admitted that cannabis and its derivatives had demonstrated therapeutic benefits for a number of conditions, such as pain and multiple sclerosis.

The FDA explained that interested people would have up to March 14 to submit their views for consideration. This deadline was set based on an earlier timeline for the planned meeting of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs. That meeting is expected to be held anywhere between March 14 and March 22 this year.

That original timeline was set because the WHO was expected to release its recommendations in December last year. However, that didn’t happen for unknown reasons.

The FDA therefore expects to extend the period within which members of the public and other stakeholders in the U.S. can submit their comments if the UN communicates that the Narcotics Committee will sit at a later time. The alternative dates for that meeting are in December this year or March next year.

The views collected by the FDA will be analyzed and the findings forwarded to the Department of Health and Human Services. HHS will then formulate a recommendation of the position that the U.S. State Department should take when the matter of reclassification comes up for a vote at the UN.

This call for public comments provides a golden chance for stakeholders to play a role in shaping how the federal government will vote on the matter at the UN. Green Growth Brands Inc. (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF) and Green Hygienics Holdings Inc. (OTCQB: GRYN) call upon everyone with an interest in the cannabis industry to share their views with the FDA so that the U.S. can vote in a way that reflects the wishes of the people back home.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – New Jersey Moves Closer to Legalizing Pot as Top Leaders Strike a Deal

Plans to legalize marijuana in New Jersey ground to a halt last year amidst a disagreement between Gov. Murphy and legislative leaders over taxes and a few other issues. However, a compromise deal on the key sticking points has now put the legalization plans back on course.

We reported at the end of last month that a new tax proposal had given cannabis legalization plans a breath of life. That proposal sought to provide a middle ground between the Governor who wanted a higher sales tax and Sweeney, the State Senate leader, who was adamant anything higher than 12 percent was unacceptable.

In the deal that has been reached, marijuana would be taxed by weight instead of the earlier plan to impose a sales tax. This new plan will insulate the state from witnessing a drop in tax revenue if marijuana prices eventually reduce as has been the case in other states where marijuana has been legal for several years.

The second major bone of contention that has also been reportedly resolved under the new deal has to do with the manner in which the marijuana industry will be regulated. Previously, the legislative leaders had wanted a separate commission to take charge of overseeing most aspects of the new industry. However, the Governor was uncomfortable with that proposal.

Under the new arrangement, an independent commission will still be set up to oversee the cannabis industry. The change in this regard is that the state governor will have the power to appoint three of the five individuals who will constitute the Cannabis Regulatory Commission.

Legislators are also working on a bill to expunge cannabis convictions from the criminal records of New Jersey residents. This law will help to address some of the historical wrongs that were committed against racial minorities, such as African-Americans, who were unduly targeted during the war on drugs that lasted decades.

Once that expungement bill is in place, the Governor, State Senate leader and the leader of the state Assembly will have plenty of work to do to mobilize votes among the legislators so that the marijuana legalization bill passes in both Houses before it can reach the desk of the Governor to be signed into law.

Now that the bickering seems to have come to an end, there is widespread hope across the industry that an enabling law will soon be passed so that a roadmap to the implementation of that law can be known to all concerned. Golden Developing Solutions Inc. (OTC: DVLP) and Green Growth Brands Inc. (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF) wish New Jersey a smooth path to legalization now that the major stumbling blocks have been addressed.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Florida Judge Rules that Cap on Dispensaries is Unconstitutional

A Circuit Court Judge, Karen Gievers, has ruled that the state and the health department in Florida violated the constitution when they imposed a cap on the number of dispensaries that a licensed business could open within the state.

Trulieve sued the state and asked court to strike down the cap on dispensaries that had been imposed limiting each business to a maximum of 30 outlets. Initially, the cap was at 25 but it was raised to 30.

The plaintiff successfully argued that patients could get better access to medical marijuana treatment centers at an affordable cost if more dispensaries were available instead of forcing patients to incur the cost of vehicle delivery of cannabis to their addresses.

The company had also argued that the ban, which was imposed long after they had opened a number of outlets, affected their business since they wouldn’t have opened dispensaries in some locations had they had prior awareness of that cap. Trulieve therefore asked court to nullify that cap so that their business isn’t unnecessarily hampered.

The judge agreed and wrote in her ruling that the state didn’t have any plausible reason to impose such a restriction on legally licensed businesses. Furthermore, the judge observed that the cap wasn’t mentioned anywhere in the constitutional amendment legalizing medical cannabis.

The state made a vain attempt to justify the cap by saying that the local and state authorities needed time to study how to regulate medical cannabis. Judge Gievers threw out this argument saying that the constitutional amendment didn’t provide for such “study” and that she didn’t get evidence of what needed to be “studied” for three years.

She argued that the state had ample time to study medical cannabis regulation as much as they wanted before the first medical cannabis law was passed years back in 2014.

This same judge lifted the ban on smoking medical cannabis and gave the state a dressing down for the blatant way in which it was disregarding constitutional provisions while implementing the medical marijuana program. The previous Governor, Rick Scott, appealed against that ruling and left office before the appeal was heard.

Recently, Gov. DeSantis threatened to withdraw from pursuing that appeal if the legislature didn’t amend the law to allow patients to smoke medical cannabis. He gave the legislators a few weeks to act or else the courts will be left to change the law by judicial declaration.

Golden Developing Solutions, Inc. (OTC: DVLP), Green Growth Brands, Inc. (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF) and the whole industry welcomes the decision of the court since patients in Florida will now have medical cannabis dispensaries closer to them.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Cannabis College Starts Training Oklahomans to Work in Cannabis Dispensaries

People who would like to work in or own medical cannabis businesses in Oklahoma can now receive the training that they need to succeed. Hempstaff Dispensary Training, aka Cannabis College now organizes classes on different aspects of medical cannabis.

The organizers of these classes say that emphasis is placed on equipping attendees with information on the history, science and laws around medical cannabis so that one is ready to participate in this rapidly growing industry.

The company organizes two four-hour classes through which people get a thorough grounding in the major aspects needed by someone who wants to own or work in a cannabis dispensary.

Students who attended the first training sessions held last weekend say that they got more than they paid for because the content of the course was very rich. For example, the students were told why a patient can be given a particular strain of cannabis and not another for a given medical condition.

Such information is critical because the dispensary staff can help patients to make informed decisions when selecting products to buy. The medical cannabis space isn’t like conventional medicine in which a doctor diagnoses and gives a patient a specific prescription to alleviate his or her condition. Cannabis dispensary staff therefore play a crucial role in making it possible for patients to select what will be most beneficial for them.

Cannabis College decided that it would make its contribution in the medical cannabis space by preparing people to work in this industry. Leaving cannabis companies with the sole responsibility of training their staff is a bit risky, the organizers of the trainings added.

The trainers also say that they put emphasis on the current medical cannabis legislation and the likely changes that are bound to occur. This segment of the training is important because at the moment, Oklahoma is using emergency rules to regulate the medical cannabis industry. One should therefore understand the current legal regime and prepare for the changes that are coming as the industry evolves in the state.

Employers appreciate this training on the rules because an employee who doesn’t know all the applicable legal provisions can make a mistake that can cause regulators to close a dispensary and fine or incarcerate the owners.

The initiative taken by Cannabis College is appreciated by everyone in the cannabis industry, including Green Hygienics Holdings Inc. (OTCQB: GRYN) and Green Growth Brands Inc. (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF) because such efforts make the industry more beneficial to patients.

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Records Show 61 Tons of Medical Marijuana were Consumed in Arizona in 2018

State records that were published on January 14 show that Arizonans set a record in the state by consuming a total of 61 tons of different forms of medical marijuana.

The report shows that Arizona medical cannabis dispensaries sold 2.5 tons of marijuana edibles last year. One interesting thing about this statistic is that in 2012, the entire state consumed that exact quantity of cannabis products. That year was the first full year since the medical marijuana was legalized.

Another comparison with that first year has to do with the number of patients who acquired medical cannabis cards. In 2012, just 40,000 people were enrolled on the program. By the end of December last year, 186,000 patients were actively using their medical cannabis cards.

The report released by the Arizona Department of Health Services shows that patients bought 56 tons of marijuana flower (buds) from the licensed dispensaries in the state. Another 2.5 tons of other marijuana products, such as resins and extracts, were also consumed during the year.

The cannabis edibles sold in 2018 were approximately 34 percent more than the quantity of edibles sold the previous year. Overall, the 61 tons of cannabis sold indicate a 42 percent increase from the quantity of marijuana products that were consumed the year before.

However, cannabis resins saw a sharper rise in the volume sold. The resins sold in 2018 were more than those sold in 2017 by 83 percent.

It is worth noting that the Arizona Court of Appeal ruled that cannabis extracts, such as resins, were not included in the protections offered to patients and doctors who were involved in the medical cannabis industry.

Nonetheless, dispensaries continued to sell the products, and patients continued to buy them as the entire state waited for the Supreme Court in Arizona to make its ruling on the matter. The outcome of the review by the Supreme Court is yet to be announced.

On matters of demographics, the statistics released by DHS show that more women took medical marijuana last year when compared to those registered in 2017. 40.02 percent of all patients on the program in 2018 were women compared to 38.35 percent in 2017.

The figures of the medical marijuana consumed are expected to keep rising, and it is interesting to note that in 2014, the total demand for cannabis in the state (both medical and recreational) was estimated to be 81 tons, just 33 percent higher than what the medical cannabis market has sold in 2018. That means the estimates may have been grossly conservative or off the mark. This positive outlook is good news to the entire cannabis industry, including Green Growth Brands Inc. (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF) and Golden Developing Solutions, Inc. (OTC: DVLP).

About CannabisNewsWire

CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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420 with CNW – Ohio Residents Petition for More Medical Marijuana Qualifying Conditions

Toward the end of this month, a special committee will sit to assess the different petitions that Ohioans submitted calling for additional conditions to be included on the list of ailments for which one can obtain a medical cannabis card.

The meeting this month comes after the end of a window within which people could send in their requests for the conditions they want to see on the qualifying list for access to medical cannabis.

Medical marijuana became legal in 2016 and 21 qualifying conditions were listed in that law. However, the law also granted the Medical Marijuana Board permission to review that list and add more conditions once each year.

The sale of medical marijuana is scheduled to start sometime this month and already more than 4,000 residents have secured medical marijuana cards. According to estimates, three in 10 Ohioans could qualify for a medical marijuana card even if the list of qualifying conditions stays as it was when the enabling law was passed.

The window within which interested parties could submit their petitions for additions to the list of qualifying conditions started on Nov. 1 and ended at the stroke of midnight on December 31. By the close of the window, 110 petitions had been submitted.

Those 110 petitions are now with a committee of lawyers advising the medical board. The lawyers will select some conditions indicated in the petitions and submit their shortlist to a committee that will meet tomorrow (January 9).

That committee will decide which of the conditions on the shortlist can be forwarded to medical experts for additional review and benchmarking in other states where medical cannabis programs exist.

The experts will then report back to the committee so that a report is presented to the full Medical Marijuana Board for a final vote. The Medical Board should have made their final decision by June 30, 2019, so that the list of qualifying conditions can be updated thereafter.

Some of the conditions in the petitions received include insomnia, depression and anxiety. Others are opioid addiction, acne, fibromyalgia and chronic pain. However, it should be noted that some of the petitions mentioned conditions that already appear among the 21 qualifying conditions listed in the 2016 law.

Currently, 33 states plus the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana. That notwithstanding, cannabis remains a Schedule 1 substance under federal law, so it is hard for scientists to study the plant and its derivatives in this prohibitionist legal environment.

Nonetheless, there are signs that the stringent controls will ease up a bit because already, the FDA has licensed a drug derived from cannabis, and permission was granted to a group of researchers at UC San Diego to import cannabis capsules from Canada for research purposes. Green Growth Brands Inc. (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF) and Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (CSE: LXX) (OTCQX: LXRP) hope that the environment will become conducive soon enough at the federal level so that the industry in the U.S. can grow based on the findings of scientific studies.

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CannabisNewsWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.

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US President, Producers Envision ‘Green Acres’ with Signing of Historic Hemp-Legalizing Farm Bill

CannabisNewsWire Editorial Coverage: Moments prior to signing a historic 2018 Farm Bill and effectively legalizing industrial hemp, President Donald Trump tweeted out a video of his performance at the 2005 Emmy Awards, singing the song “Green Acres.” Having already passed through the House of Representatives and the Senate, the bill was met with much fanfare across nearly the entire cannabis sector, including benefactors such as Green Growth Brands (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF) (GGB Profile), Cronos Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: CRON) (TSX: CRON), Canopy Growth Corporation (NYSE: CGC) (TSX: WEED), Harvest Health and Recreation (CSE: HARV) and MedMen Enterprises Inc. (CSE: MMEN) (OTC: MMNFF).

To view an infographic of this editorial, click here.

Trump’s signature was the last hurdle for the $867 billion bill. Now the market is gearing up for the massive potential of hemp-derived cannabinoids hitting stores. Among the benefactors of the passage is Green Growth Brands (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF), whose goal it is to become the leading retailer of…

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CannabisNewsWire (CNW)
Denver, Colorado
www.CannabisNewsWire.com
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Editor@CannabisNewsWire.com

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