Monthly Archives: August 2018

How Legal States Intend Tackling “High” Drivers

The issue of weed-intoxicated drivers is a serious and concerning one. Thousands of people die on the roads every year because people climb behind the wheel when impaired, whether “high” on pot, drunk on booze, or otherwise Non Compos Mentos. Until now, officers have not had any tools available to detect marijuana use in drivers, not accurately, not fairly, and not effectively. That is about to change.

Problems with Existing Intoxication Tests

Currently, officers can test those they suspect of driving under the influence of weed with those they use for drunk drivers. They only have field sobriety tests available to them, as well as breath, blood, and urine tests. Field sobriety tests are not effective for weed lovers, since weed does not affect people the same way alcohol does. They can still walk straight, stand on one leg, and pass these tests easily.

For this reason, field sobriety tests will not stand in court. Blood, urine, and breath tests are slightly more accurate, but not enough to provide concrete evidence of weed use. These tests can detect THC in the body, but they can only establish if drivers were “high” within the last week. They cannot determine if drivers are intoxicated now, as they are driving in that moment. This makes them legally irrelevant.

Statistics for Stoned Driving

Now that cannabis is legal medicinally in more than 30 states and recreationally in 9 states, the need to develop an accurate test for weed impairment is crucial. In fact, some states that are considering legalization, such as New York, are demanding that companies develop a breathalyzer that will suffice as evidence in court. Much of their impending legalization hinges on this.

Back in 2017, some frightening statistics emerged out of Colorado. Its Department of Transportation conducted a survey that found a dangerously high number of “high” drivers risking the lives of everybody on its roads. At least 70 percent of surveyed participants admitted to driving stoned within the last year, and at least 27 percent confessed to driving pot-impaired daily. That is shockingly high.

Although the effects of marijuana and alcohol differ enormously, and despite cannabis being much safer to consume, there is no denying its ability to alter a user’s state of mind. No matter what anybody says, driving “high” is irresponsible and can get you and others killed. People should not be able to drive around intoxicated on pot, and enforcement officers must have some way to stop them.

New Breathalyzer Technology

A company from California, Hound Labs Incorporated, has managed to develop a first-of-its-kind breathalyzer device. It is fully capable of determining if drivers are “high” behind the wheel. It is likely to rollout across the country this fall, holding drivers accountable, making roads safer, and giving law enforcement the tools they need to achieve this.

The new pot breathalyzer is hypersensitive, able to detect THC on a driver’s breath. It also works for alcohol. On the company’s website, it says, “The Hound Breathalyzer is one billion times more sensitive than today’s alcohol breathalyzers.” This is excellent for everybody in the United States, except for those who insist on driving stoned and endangering their and others’ lives.

In the United States, anybody with a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 percent or higher is legally too intoxicated to drive. However, weed is more complex. For example, much scientific debate exists over what exactly qualifies someone as being under the influence of pot, particularly in the moment that he or she is behind the wheel.

How Pot Breathalyzers Work

According to Hound Labs, we now have the answer to that question. For its breathalyzers, timing marks that qualification. The company admits that its new technology is unable to determine just how much THC is in someone’s system, but it is able to detect its presence and how long ago that person consumed pot. THC remains on a person’s breath for up to two hours after consumption.

This time, called the “peak window of impairment,” is how officers will catch stoned drivers. After three hours, THC is no longer present on the breath and readings measure zero. Therefore, when a driver blows into a pot breathalyzer, it can detect the presence of THC, alcohol, even both, within minutes, but it also gives officers some compelling evidence to charge them with intoxicated driving

Because THC can only exist on someone’s breath during those two hours, the driver obviously consumed weed within that period if the breathalyzer tests positive. The driver must be guilty, since it will not detect THC after that time, and the effects of THC last much longer, sometimes several hours. If positive, the device will display “Warning.” If negative, it will display “Pass.”

Upholding Driver’s Rights

Louisa Ashford, marketing manager for Hound Lab, said this in a statement, “The device will help ensure safety on our roads and in the workplace, while also promoting fairness to people who use marijuana legally and responsibly.” What this means is that these tests will not infringe on anybody’s right to use cannabis or subject them to any whims and fancies. It is a scientific, accurate method of detecting THC.

Pot breathalyzers, such as the alcohol and weed device offered by Hound Labs, as well as the roadside saliva-testing device developed by Cannabix Technologies Incorporated, a Canadian-based company, are able to remain objective. They can determine with accuracy the impairment of a driver, without basing evidence on a police officer’s hunches or judgements, or forcing them to endure intrusive tests.

Author Bio

John Levy writes for Pot Valet, a leader of marijuana delivery Los Angeles. He shares his research with the world at large and hopes fervently for legalization to spread across the planet.

Cash Dilemma of California’s Pot Dispensaries

Weed may be legal in two-thirds of the United States for medical purposes, recreational use, or both, but any profits are still drug monies under federal law. Until the federal government changes its stance on marijuana, companies that operate legally, in states that allow cannabis sales, must work on a cash-only basis. This puts them at immense risk of theft, armed robbery, assault, and worse.

The Problem of Law

Under federal law, marijuana remains an illegal substance. According to the United States Department of Justice, weed is a Schedule II drug under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, where it shares company with the likes of much, much harder drugs, including LSD, heroin, and ecstasy. The law considers drugs in this category to have no medicinal value whatsoever and a high likelihood of abuse.

Clearly, cannabis does not belong there. Science proves it possibly the most medicinally valuable plant on the planet, with researchers discovering new therapeutic uses for it near daily. It is also not dangerously addictive, as is the case with heroin and cocaine, although dependency is more common than one would think. Despite this, the federal government stubbornly refuses to reclassify weed.

The Problem of Banks

The banking industry will not do business with companies profiting from illegal trade, even if that trade is legal in the state they reside in. All monies made from the cannabis market are federally illegal. If the banks offer services to weed companies, they are themselves breaking the law by banking drug money. As a result, they could face an array of federal charges, along with consequent penalties.

Because of this, marijuana businesses work on a cash-only basis. Some will charge your debit card under a fabricated sale of another, federally legal item. However, most work solely with cash. Clients pay for buds in cash, and they use cash to pay suppliers, wages, distributors, and more. Even worse, they do not qualify for bank loans and other essential banking services.

The Problem of Cash

Since weed companies cannot access banking accounts, cannot make deposits, cannot withdraw monies from a safe place, cannot get loans, cannot do anything other businesses take for granted, their financial security is significantly compromised. They are at risk of all criminals, opportunistic or not. Carrying cash around makes them a target for anybody looking for a quick cash heist.

Not only does federal law put their financial safety at risk, but it directly puts their very lives in danger too. Criminals will steal what they can, but they are not shy to use physical violence if need be. Physical assault, assault with weapons, even murder, is not beyond the skills of those wanting to rob a weed store. Delivery drivers are under constant threat and owners need security guards just to close shop.

The Problem of Alternatives

Because pot shops cannot put their money safely into a bank, they must get creative to find solutions. Some stash cash under their mattresses, but most must break the law to protect themselves. Many deposit their weed earnings into different bank accounts, such as for property, construction, or other types of businesses. Yes, this is the very definition of money laundering, which is also a federal crime.

Few, if any, are honest about their earnings, despite the fact that there is no need for dishonesty since states are legalizing weed at a rapidly gaining momentum. Fortunately, some smaller banks and credit unions are offering a few basic banking services to marijuana companies, and as legalization spreads, more will join the fray. However, the issue will not resolve until the federal government legalizes too.

The Problem of Enforcement

Law enforcement is happy to have marijuana monies stay out of banks. Under federal “asset forfeiture” laws, officers get to seize cash and, astonishingly, use it to fund their departments, even if they just suspect it includes proceeds from a crime, such as selling weed. Under the same laws, they can even seize other property, including homes, cars, and other goods.

However, cash is better. It requires less paperwork and officers do not have to prove that cash comes from criminal activities. They do not even need to charge that a crime was committed. In Detroit, police have seized so much cash from Michigan’s weed dispensaries that the 500 stores of two years ago dwindled down to just 200 today.

Although it is maybe possible to recover seized monies, companies need a lot of money and time to fight it. They also need a judge amenable to victims in asset forfeiture cases. Weed companies are only legal at state levels, so federal officers can seize cash under federal law. Fortunately, most police departments respect state laws and do not routinely seize assets from legal, licensed pot dispensaries.

Final Thoughts

Until the federal government legalizes marijuana, or at the very least reschedules or decriminalizes it, legal cannabis companies have no option but to work on a cash-only basis. They have to face the risks bravely and find other ways to deposit their legally earned monies. Since states are legalizing at a domino pace, experts predict that the federal government will too. If not, its law will soon be irrelevant.

Author Bio

John Levy is a writer for Pot Valet, a leading weed delivery service in California. He spends his days researching the benefits of marijuana and sharing his findings with the world. As an advocate of legalization, he fights for everyone’s right to access it worldwide.

Cannabis Oil Global Industry 2018 Sales, Supply, Size, and Consumption Forecasts to 2023

Wiseguyreports.Com Added New Market Research Report On -“Cannabis Oil Market 2018 Manufacturers, Applications and Future Demand Forecast to 2023 ”.

Pune, India – August 30, 2018 /MarketersMedia/ —

Global Cannabis Oil Market

WiseGuyRerports.com Presents “Global Cannabis Oil Market 2018 by Manufacturers, Regions, Type and Application, Forecast to 2023” New Document to its Studies Database. The Report Contain 124 Pages With Detailed Analysis.

Description

Cannabis oil is from the marijuana plant (cannabis indicas). The oil is extracted from the leaves of the cannabis plant. It contains high levels of THC. It is used for medicinal purposes and as a recreational drug.

Cannabis oil reached considerable popularity when a man in Canada named Rick Simpson began distributing this concentrate, albeit illegally, as a medicine. Rick’s oil (commonly known as “Rick Simpson oil”) brought the long studied knowledge about the anti-tumor and various medicinal properties of cannabis to the mainstream.

Scope of the Report:

This report focuses on the Cannabis Oil in global market, especially in North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific, South America, Middle East and Africa. This report categorizes the market based on manufacturers, regions, type and application.

Get sample Report @ https://www.wiseguyreports.com/sample-request/3349777-global-cannabis-oil-market-2018-by-manufacturers-regions

Global major cannabis oil production regions are USA, Canada and Europe. Canada is the largest production region, which produced 1071.6 kilo bottles in 2017, accounting for 52.66%. USA is the second largest production region, with production of 778.9 kilo bottles in 2017.

The worldwide market for Cannabis Oil is expected to grow at a CAGR of roughly 55.5% over the next five years, will reach 1410 million US$ in 2023, from 100 million US$ in 2017, according to a new GIR (Global Info Research) study.

Market Segment by Manufacturers, this report covers

Select Oil

K.I.N.D. Concentrates

Canopy Growth Corporation

Aphria

Emblem Cannabis Oils

Whistler

The Lab

Absolute Terps

Market Segment by Regions, regional analysis covers

North America (United States, Canada and Mexico)

Europe (Germany, France, UK, Russia and Italy)

Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, Korea, India and Southeast Asia)

South America (Brazil, Argentina, Colombia etc.)

Middle East and Africa (Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, Nigeria and South Africa)

Market Segment by Type, covers

Organic Cannabis Oil

Non-Organic Cannabis Oil

Market Segment by Applications, can be divided into

Recreational

Medical

Complete Report Details @ https://www.wiseguyreports.com/reports/3349777-global-cannabis-oil-market-2018-by-manufacturers-regions

 

Table of Contents -Major Key Points

1 Market Overview

1.1 Cannabis Oil Introduction

1.2 Market Analysis by Type

1.2.1 Organic Cannabis Oil

1.2.2 Non-Organic Cannabis Oil

1.3 Market Analysis by Applications

1.3.1 Recreational

1.3.2 Medical

1.4 Market Analysis by Regions

1.4.1 North America (United States, Canada and Mexico)

1.4.1.1 United States Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.1.2 Canada Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.1.3 Mexico Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.2 Europe (Germany, France, UK, Russia and Italy)

1.4.2.1 Germany Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.2.2 France Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.2.3 UK Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.2.4 Russia Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.2.5 Italy Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.3 Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, Korea, India and Southeast Asia)

1.4.3.1 China Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.3.2 Japan Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.3.3 Korea Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.3.4 India Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.3.5 Southeast Asia Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.4 South America, Middle East and Africa

1.4.4.1 Brazil Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.4.2 Egypt Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.4.3 Saudi Arabia Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.4.4 South Africa Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.4.4.5 Nigeria Market States and Outlook (2013-2023)

1.5 Market Dynamics

1.5.1 Market Opportunities

1.5.2 Market Risk

1.5.3 Market Driving Force

2 Manufacturers Profiles

2.1 Select Oil

2.1.1 Business Overview

2.1.2 Cannabis Oil Type and Applications

2.1.2.1 Product A

2.1.2.2 Product B

2.1.3 Select Oil Cannabis Oil Sales, Price, Revenue, Gross Margin and Market Share (2016-2017)

2.2 K.I.N.D. Concentrates

2.2.1 Business Overview

2.2.2 Cannabis Oil Type and Applications

2.2.2.1 Product A

2.2.2.2 Product B

2.2.3 K.I.N.D. Concentrates Cannabis Oil Sales, Price, Revenue, Gross Margin and Market Share (2016-2017)

2.3 Canopy Growth Corporation

2.3.1 Business Overview

2.3.2 Cannabis Oil Type and Applications

2.3.2.1 Product A

2.3.2.2 Product B

2.3.3 Canopy Growth Corporation Cannabis Oil Sales, Price, Revenue, Gross Margin and Market Share (2016-2017)

2.4 Aphria

2.4.1 Business Overview

2.4.2 Cannabis Oil Type and Applications

2.4.2.1 Product A

2.4.2.2 Product B

2.4.3 Aphria Cannabis Oil Sales, Price, Revenue, Gross Margin and Market Share (2016-2017)

2.5 Emblem Cannabis Oils

2.5.1 Business Overview

2.5.2 Cannabis Oil Type and Applications

2.5.2.1 Product A

2.5.2.2 Product B

2.5.3 Emblem Cannabis Oils Cannabis Oil Sales, Price, Revenue, Gross Margin and Market Share (2016-2017)

To read more visit: http://www.nbc12.com/story/38991795/cannabis-oil-global-industry-2018-sales-supply-size-and-consumption-forecasts-to-2023

NEW CALIFORNIA WARNINGS FOR ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES AND CANNABIS PRODUCTS TAKE EFFECT AUGUST 30, 2018, NOW INCLUDING ADDENDUM REGARDING 2014 CONSENT AGREEMENT PARTIES AND PARTICIPANTS

ARE YOU READY?  AND WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO YOU?

On August 30th new regulations requiring warning signs about Proposition 65 dangers, cannabis exposure and BPA in packaging come into effect.  It’s a trifecta of new compliance requirements, and it’s going to expose California alcohol and cannabis licensees to significant penalties for those that don’t pay attention.

The Proposition 65 warnings – not the warning you are used to!

The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) adopted new Proposition 65 warning requirements that take effect on August 30, 2018.[i]  The new regulations significantly change the current regulations and require all suppliers, importers and distributors to change the warnings they currently provide to their retail customers.

And, although the new regulations relieve retailers of some burdens in providing the warnings, retailers are still responsible for the actual posting of required warnings provided to them and could be held liable for failure to do so. All ABC licensed retailers, on-sale (of all sorts including bars, restaurants, tasting rooms, entertainment venues and hotels) and off-sale (of all sorts) must have the signage posted in their premises in a conspicuous manner where the signs will be seen by the consuming public.

Failure to understand and comply with the New California Proposition 65 Warning Requirements is a bonanza for the Proposition 65 Plaintiffs Bar

The mandated Proposition 65 warnings apply to all products sold in California regardless of where the products are manufactured and, the bottom line is, if you violate these detailed regulations, you could face significant monetary penalties and attorney’s fees from the plaintiff’s gathering to commence enforcement.

The state Attorney General rarely files actions for Proposition 65 violations.  However, the law allows any private individual to act “in the public interest” by serving any company with “notice” of some alleged violation. With few exceptions, the party serving the notice may file a civil suit any time after 60 days following the date the company receives the “notice” if the state Attorney General does not take the action over within those 60 days.

The penalties that are in the law may be imposed on a sliding scale ranging up to $2,500 per day per violation – – going back as far as one year. And, the penalty is not dependent on how much product is sold. Should the case go to trial, a defendant who loses must pay all attorney fees and costs to the private attorney and, trust us, these fees are always significant. However, should the defendant win, the private individual suing does not have to reimburse the defendant for his attorney fees and costs.

Nearly all actions by private individuals end up being settled out of court and most often for a significant sum primarily because:

(1) In these cases, the defendant must prove to prove a violation did not occur;

(2) Very few insurance policies will cover the costs of Proposition 65 litigation;

(3) Even if the defendant wins, the defendant cannot recover attorney fees from the other party; and

(4) The cost of litigation is generally too high for any benefit received.

To further illustrate: in the years 2016 and 2017, there were a total of 687 private party “notices” that were settled out of court for a total amount of nearly $18 million. Over $14 million of the $18 million was awarded directly to the private attorneys for “attorney fees and costs.”

Do we have your attention yet?

The New Rules

The California Code of Regulations implementing the Proposition 65 law has been restructured and many new provisions were added.  These new regulations will be effective on August 30th.  Some of the most significant changes in the rules include:

(1) Changes to the “safe harbor” text for the mandated warnings.

(2) New provisions addressing Internet sales warnings.

(3) And clarification of the roles and responsibilities of manufacturers and retailers in providing the warnings.

The OEHHA developed new text for alcoholic beverages warnings. You must use this exact wording for “safe harbor” from alleged violations. Although the new regulations allow businesses to use the existing Prop 65 warning statements until August 30th, companies may use the new warnings now, before August 30th.  After August 30th, the old warnings will no longer provide you with a “safe harbor.”

Important details in the new rules

Because it is critically important to pay close attention to the details in the regulations (to guard against alleged violations), this blog contains a great deal of detail on the new Proposition 65 rules.

Honest – the details matter!

New definitions added to the rules  

Important new or revised definitions include:

“Consumer product” means any article, or component part thereof, including food, that is produced, distributed, or sold for the personal use, consumption or enjoyment of a consumer.

“Consumer product exposure” means an exposure that results from a person’s acquisition, purchase, storage, consumption, or any reasonably foreseeable use of a consumer product, including consumption of a food. (This means simply purchasing the product creates “exposure”.)

“Retail seller” means a person or business that sells or otherwise provides consumer products directly to consumers by any means, including via the internet.

“Sign” means a physical presentation of a written, printed, graphic, or electronically provided communication, including shelf signs, other than a label or labeling, posted in a conspicuous manner that is associated with the exposure requiring a warning under the Act and is clearly visible under all lighting conditions normally encountered during business hours and under such circumstances as to make it likely to be seen, read, and understood by an ordinary person.

Responsibility for providing the mandatory warning

Every in-state and out-of-state manufacturer/distributor/importer/retailer who sells an alcoholic beverage to a California consumer must provide a “clear and reasonable” warning to the end consumer prior to the consumer purchasing the product.

Although companies with 9 or fewer employees are generally exempted from providing the required warning, know that if you sell products to a larger retailer who is not exempt, the large retailer may require you to comply with the Proposition 65 warning requirement regardless of your size or location. It is always a good practice to check your general retailer vendor agreements, and the terms of any retailer generated purchase order.

The same rules apply to an exempt small importer or distributor if the manufacturer of the product has over 9 employees. Even if you, as the distributor or importer, are exempt, the larger manufacturer is NOT exempt. Again, you must check your contracts regarding how they set forth the responsibilities and liabilities of each party related to providing the warnings.

Specific Warnings Required for Alcoholic Beverages

The old text and rules regarding alcoholic beverages warnings will be repealed on August 30, 2018 and the new regulations will be the only rules that apply and that will provide “safe harbor” from any allegation of a violation.

Below is a summary of the most important changes that affect the alcoholic beverage warnings. (Note: Specific warnings related to the sale/distribution of cannabis products in California are noted at the end of this blog.)

  • Alcoholic beverages manufacturers/distributors have primary responsibility to provide the warnings.
  • Unlike most manufacturers who may include the Proposition 65 warning directly on the label, alcoholic beverages manufacturers are precluded from putting the Proposition 65 warning on labels because all alcoholic beverages labels must be approved by the TTB (Alcohol & Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau and contain the federal government warning which is not the same as, nor compliant with, the California Proposition 65 warning. The federal government warning on the label will not provide “safe harbor” under California law.
  • The manufacturer/distributor/importer’s warning signs must be provided to each retailer with a written notice provided directly to the retailer or its authorized agent and the information provided must also include text to be used for online product pages.
  • The manufacturer/distributor/importer must obtain and keep a written reply from the retailer. The reply may be sent either electronically or in writing but must confirm that the retailer has received the notice.
  • While the new rules state the manufacturer/distributor’s notice must be received by the retailer no later than February 28, 2019, failing to provide the notice at any time after the August 30th deadline will leave you open to a violation claim, so do it now.
  • The required notice to the retailers must be renewed annually.
  • The retailer is responsible for the placement and maintenance of warning materials, including warnings for products sold over the Internet.
  • The retailer can be found liable if he/she fails to adequately post the warnings provided by the manufacturer.
  • The regulations allow manufacturers/distributors/importers and retailers to contract with each other to specify which party must provide the required warnings. (Always check your contracts!)

The new text and content for the alcoholic beverages Proposition 65 warnings

  • The text of the new warning must include the word “WARNING” in all uppercase.
  • The mandatory text for alcoholic beverages must now include the Prop 65 warning website address.

The new rules provide two options for the warning signs:

(1) Posting an 8½ by 11-inch sign in no smaller than 22-point type, placed at eye level in a location that is readable and conspicuous to customers as they enter the area where alcoholic beverages are sold, or

(2) Posting a notice or sign no smaller than 5 by 5 inches placed at each retail point of sale or display to assure that it is readable and conspicuous.  This type of warning notice must be in a type size no smaller than 20-point type and be enclosed in a box (as shown below).

The manufacturer or distributor must provide these signs to retailers:

Warnings in a language other than English

All alcoholic beverages warnings must be in English.  In addition, if the product information, the label or the shelf tag is presented in another language, a second warning sign in that same language must also be provided.

Electronic Warnings on the Internet and Warnings in Catalogs

Alcoholic beverages Proposition 65 warnings for online sales must provide the full warning text in a text box as described above and the warning must be “clearly associated” with the item being purchased.  OEHHA states the warning “must be displayed with such conspicuousness as compared to other words” as to assure the warning is “likely to be seen, read, and understood by an ordinary individual under customary conditions of purchase or use.” The warning must be always be provided to the consumer prior to the finalizing the purchase.

Placement of the Warning on the Internet

These three methods for providing the warning on the Internet are acceptable:

(1)   place the full text in a text box as described above directly on the product display page,

(2) put the word “WARNING” on the product display page with a hyperlink that provides one-click immediate access to the full text, or

(3) include the warning as part of the check-out process prior to the final purchase.  It is acceptable to provide the warning, for example, as a pop-up whenever a purchaser enters a California zip code.

A warning symbol alone without the hyperlink on a product display page is not compliant if the actual warning language is located elsewhere on the site and the purchaser must search for it in the general content of the website.

Alcoholic Beverages Customer Pick-up

When stores or tasting rooms allow customers to order by telephone or online and later pick up the order at the physical location, the Proposition 65 warning signs should be at the pick-up counter to assure the warning is seen before finalizing and picking up the purchased products.

Direct-To-Consumers Alcoholic Beverages Shipments

If an alcoholic beverage is being shipped directly to a consumer using a “package delivery service,” the alcoholic beverage warning must additionally be on or in the shipping container or package “in a type size no smaller than the largest type size used for other consumer information on the product.”  And in no case, may the type size be smaller than 8-point. The rule requires that the warning “be readable and conspicuous” to the consumer prior to consumption of the alcoholic beverages.

A quick word about BPA warnings 

Besides the alcoholic beverages warnings, effective August 30th, California is once again requiring a warning for any alcoholic beverages that contain any BPA (Bisphenol A) as part of the packaging.  California has put BPA on the list of chemicals requiring a warning.  Although the federal Food & Drug Administration determined that any possible migration of BPA into the food is at safe levels and disagrees with the California listing, under the new Proposition 65 rules, any manufacturer with packaging containing any BPA must provide the warning.

BPA is commonly used in linings for beverage cans and bottle caps and in some synthetic corks.  The only way to assure that your beverage packaging does not contain BPA is to obtain a letter of certification from the suppliers. If you are not sure, the safest way to proceed is to simply post the new BPA warning in tasting rooms, product catalogs and internet listings.

The warning requirements for BPA mirror the specifications for alcoholic beverages requiring the same size and sign placements described above.

The “safe harbor” text is:

Rules Applicable to Cannabis Producers

In 2009, the State of California added marijuana smoke to the list of substances known by the State to cause cancer.  The OEHHA Fact Sheet states that marijuana smoke contains several thousand different compounds and that at least 33 of them are also on the Proposition 65 list. These include the carcinogens arsenic, benzene, cadmium, hexavalent, chromium, formaldehyde, lead, mercury and nickel.  Additionally, there is also an issue regarding pesticides such as myclobutanil or carbaryl having been found in certain cannabis products.

The Attorney General’s database shows a recent increase in “notices of violations” being sent to California medical cannabis businesses for marijuana smoke exposure and/or edible cannabis products allegedly containing myclobutanil or carbaryl. Because of this, the OEHHA advises cannabis product cultivators, manufacturers and retailers to provide the Proposition 65 warnings.

The cannabis warnings must include the pictogram warning symbol (an exclamation point in a yellow triangle) and the “safe harbor” text:

And for areas where consumption is allowed:

Proposition 65, BPA and Cannabis. If you manufacture, distribute or sell any of these products we encourage you to pay expedited attention to the signage details.  It is far less expensive to take the time now than it will be after you get the visit from the inspector, or from the private attorney looking for a payday.

The magic word is “safe harbor.”  Know where the safe harbor is and dock there!

To read more visit: https://www.beveragelaw.com/booze-rules/prop65-newregs

CANNABIS LEGALIZATION INFO FOR SMALL BUSINESS

Once Bill C-45 comes into force, B.C. consumers aged 19 and up will be able to purchase Cannabis legally. There will be two methods of purchasing cannabis: in stores, through provincially controlled or licensed retailers; or online, directly from a federally or provincially operated online platform.

Cannabis legalization will allow consumers to purchase the following five cannabis products:

 

  • Dried Cannabis
  • Cannabis Oil
  • Fresh Cannabis
  • Cannabis Plants
  • Cannabis Seeds

Under the current plan, the sales of edibles and concentrates will be enabled within one year following the coming into force of the Cannabis Act.

Distribution in British Columbia

British Columbia announced its distribution model in December 2017. The minimum legal age to purchase cannabis in our province has been set at 19. Consumers can buy legal cannabis in private and public stores. Mirroring the current model for alcohol distribution, wholesale will be handled by the provincial government through the province’s Liquor Distribution Branch (LDB). It is currently unclear whether online sales will be done through public or private sellers or a mix.

Municipalities and Cannabis Legalization

Please note, municipalities retain the right to have different requirements and zoning restrictions for business licensing. Some municipalities may even choose not to allow retail cannabis stores within their limits. Different B.C. cities have announced a variety of different approaches to cannabis legalization.

Opportunities in the Cannabis Industry

Production

The production of recreational cannabis will be delegated through licensed producers. These licenses are issued by Health Canada. It will remain illegal to produce cannabis for sale without first securing a license.

Entrepreneurs with questions about procuring a license should contact Health Canada.

Retail Licenses

In spring 2018, British Columbia’s Liquor Control and Licensing Branch will launch an online application portal for individuals and businesses interested in applying for a recreational cannabis retail license. This portal can be found here.

Each applicant will be required to pay an application fee and a licensing fee. The amount of this fee has not yet been determined. All applicants will be assessed using the same evaluation criteria, including background checks and local government support. Persons who have operated dispensaries prior to legalization will not receive preferential treatment during the application process.

British Columbia Announces Provincial Cannabis Legislation

British Columbia has formally announced legislation to provide for legal, controlled access to non-medical cannabis in British Columbia. The proposed Cannabis Distribution Act (CDA) will establish the Province’s exclusive jurisdiction over wholesale distribution of cannabis and provide authority for public retail sales.

The proposed Cannabis Control and Licensing Act (CCLA) establishes provincial control over the sale, supply and possession of non-medical cannabis, and establishes licensing of private cannabis retailers, including registration and training requirements for those who will work in cannabis retail. The act outlines restrictions on the possession, personal cultivation and consumption of cannabis by adults and prohibitions for minors.

The Province of British Columbia’s announcement can be read here.

Want to Learn More about Cannabis Legalization?

The Province of British Columbia have produced the B.C. Cannabis Private Retail Licensing Guide that answers commonly asked questions about retail licenses and how they’ll be distributed. The province’s consultation process with the public took place over several months during 2017 and the results can be viewed here. If your question is not answered in these documents, the relevant provincial contact can be reached via this email address.

To read more visit: https://smallbusinessbc.ca/article/cannabis-legalization-info-small-business/

The top 8 emerging countries in the cannabis space

As marijuana business grows globally, many stock watchers and research analysts are making predictions about where the most significant investment opportunities are.

Investment site, The Motley Fool, recently published an analysis by Keith Speights of forecasts for the 2022 marijuana market.

A lot can happen even monthly in the ever-evolving cannabis space. Here is a different analysis of it.

8. Germany

 

According to Motley Fool, their third-party market and analytical researchers projected that “marijuana sales in Germany will reach close to $1.6 billion in 2022.” Germany has more than 691,000 legal consumers in the country, in a population of approximately 82.67 million. That means less than one percent of the population consumes medical marijuana.

Considering Germany just legalized medical marijuana in 2017, their market is most likely going to expand. However, the 12,000 German pharmacies that currently stock Cronos Group’s cannabis might patriotically switch to domestically cultivated medical marijuana, rather than rely on a potentially pricier import. The remaining 8,000 pharmacies that presently provide medical marijuana might stock domestic strains as well. If that occurs, Cronos’ market share in Germany might go up in smoke.

7. United Kingdom

 

The listing of the United Kingdom in second place is odd. Marijuana laws in the U.K. are currently strict. However, the U.K.’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs has “recommended that cannabis-derived medicinal products should be placed in Schedule 2 of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001.” As a result,“Cannabis-derived medicinal products are recommended to be available on prescription.”

While doctors will soon be able to prescribe medical marijuana, older, conservative Brits might not rush to obtain cannabis for their arthritis, instead of paracetamol, (assuming it is even a qualifying condition). Then again, who knows? Maybe senior citizens will line up around the block to consume cannabis at gin o’clock. Either way, U.K is just on the cusp of offering a medicinal market. It is better to wait and see how this aspect of the market debuts, before predicting they will be in the second-to-the-top spot in four years.

MF predicts an estimated $7 million for U.K. medical marijuana sales this year, with four months still to go. $7 million in the big scheme of things, is peanuts, considering Nevada is projected to earn $70 million in tax revenue alone from cannabis sales, while the actual sales are forecasted to make over $500 million. Keep in mind the state of Nevada has a population of approximately 2.998 million people (in 2017), while the 2016 population of the U.K was 65.64 million people.

Relatively, the U.K. market is barely noticeable for now. Let’s not get over-excited hoping that Her Majesty will provide the royal warrant of approval to a British cannabis company just yet.

6. Switzerland

 

According to Motley Fool, Switzerland is the only country in their top five list that “currently allows the legal adult use of low-THC marijuana,” – less than one percent THC, to be exact. The legal THC limit in most other European countries is 0.2 percent.

According to the Swiss newspaper Tages-Anzeiger, in 2017  there were 410 registered companies in Switzerland that were manufacturing or trading cannabidiol- the non-psychotropic compound of cannabis that’s also known as CBD. The combined total of their CBD sales garnered approximately $62 million (about CHF 60 million) for the year.

Sounds impressive, but in the United States, there are hundreds of companies doing a brisk business in CBD as well, such as Charlotte’s Web and CBD American Shaman, which has 150 stores and counting.

Even though CBD and THC are opposites concerning their psychotropic effects, anyone taking a product containing one percent THC for the psychoactive effects will be in for a disappointment.

All of the over-hyped European “marijuana cafes” that are serving drinks with one percent THC or less only are serving a decent cup of coffee that might put their customers in a slightly better mood. (Americans can do this at home by putting a few CBD drops in their coffee.)

Swiss supermarket Coop Cooperative is the world’s first major chain to sell cannabis cigarettes that contain less than one percent THC, in its 700 stores across the country. Europeans are used to smoking cannabis or hashish in tobacco, so this product produced by Koch & Gsell was bound to occur.

The Swiss spliffs called “Heimat” cigarettes debuted in 2017 with little fanfare. If Switzerland is still more globally-renowned for its cheese and chocolate, rather than its cannabis cigarettes, it is unlikely that it will be a significant player in the marijuana marketplace four years from now. Although, it will have a brisk CBD business, similar to several other countries.

5. Italy

 

Italy legalized medical marijuana in 2013. Currently, however, the country’s regulations restrict cannabis use. As a result, marijuana sales this year are expected to be less than $7 million – again, mediocre financials. Motley Fool listed Italy on the prediction that they might legalize recreational cannabis. Let’s not hold our collective breaths until that happens. That’s like predicting Afghanistan will corner the orange market if they decide to grow oranges instead of poppies.

4. Mexico

 

According to Motley Fool, “Mexico rounds out the top five ranking of the largest international marijuana markets of 2022.” Remember, this is according to third-party research. Common knowledge forecasts this to be highly unlikely.

Mexico has long given lip service to legalization. During President Enrique Peña Nieto’s 2016 United Nations General Assembly speech, he announced that he was going to legalize marijuana. This bombshell drew unprecedented cheers from an audience that would otherwise be half-asleep. Realistically though, in a narco-democracy like Mexico, kingpins aren’t going to give up their marijuana market share so easily.

The country’s legalized medical marijuana contains THC levels of one percent or lower, like Switzerland.

Fool predicts that Mexican sales of legal marijuana “are projected to reach $99 million by 2022, as regulations are relaxed, up from an estimated $14 million this year.” $99 Million may sound like all the money in the world, but in the marijuana marketplace, it is hardly a top earner.

Where do the potentially more significant investment opportunities occur? Below are the countries that I humbly predict will have one of the biggest slices of the marijuana market share four years from now. Let us focus on markets where the medical marijuana business is booming, like Israel. Speaking of Israel, Tikun Olam -the Coca-Cola of Israeli cannabis- exports to Mexico.

3. Canada 

 

Canada and Uruguay are the only countries with marijuana export licenses written into their legislation. Canadian marijuana cultivators, Tilray, (NASDAQ: TLRY) currently exports to ten other countries so far. Their stock debuted with an overvalued bang and may level off over time, primarily if the company doesn’t expand further. However, they could do well in the initial stages of Canadian legalization, until more competition occurs in the recreational marketplace. However, if more countries follow Canada’s lead and legalize adult recreational marijuana use, medical marijuana stocks will probably nosedive. Currently, Tilray is will report its first-ever earnings as a publicly traded company on Tuesday, August 28.

Meanwhile, Canadian company CROP Infrastructure Corp (NASDAQ: CROP) acquired a 49% stake in a 217,000 square foot property in the Westmoreland parish of Jamaica. The facility is perfectly prepared for cannabis production and extraction. Stay tuned for their launch of Hempire Jamaica. It could drive up the price of their stock.

Additionally, the Canadian-Jamaican partnership, Jamaican Medical Cannabis Company (JMCC), under the leadership of savvy CEO Diane Scott, is working with world-renowned Jamaican scientist Dr. Henry Lowe, whose product is recognized by as an orphan drug by the FDA, which is unusual for a cannabis-based drug. If their clinical trials of his drug have a positive impact on Leukemia, JMCC will be recognized as one of the most major players in the industry, which will garner Canada a position at the top.

The relationship between the world’s second country to fully legalize marijuana and the country that is best known for its marijuana is a strong one:

2. Jamaica

 

This one should be self-explanatory. Even though the U.S. put tremendous pressure on Jamaica not to “legalize it,” as Rastafarian Bob Marley said, “None of them can stop the tide.” People have been going to Jamaica for decades to smoke a spliff and listen to reggae. That is probably never going to change.

What does that mean to the global marijuana market? Jamaican cannabis is already world-renowned for its authenticity. People worldwide want to get their hands on proprietary Jamaican strains of tasty, Ital (natural), outdoor bud, even if they can’t go on vacation in Kingston or Negril.

Unlike cultivation in Puerto Rico, Jamaican cannabis can and does grow outdoors. Jamaica has the perfect climate for producing sun-grown cannabis, which is preferential to some consumers than hydroponically grown cannabis. With recent inroads from CROP Infrastructure Corp and the JMCC, Jamaican cannabis is primed and ready for export.

Bob Marley’s family has deep roots in the cannabis trade. Marley Natural is the official cannabis brand of Bob Marley, developed by his estate in conjunction with the Seattle, U.S.A.-based private equity firm Privateer Holdings, which develops cannabis industry brands. Officially launched in February of 2016, Marley’s widow, Rita Marley maintains the brand is based on her husband’s life and legacy. Marley Natural marijuana is currently grown in California and has an established fanbase.

Bob Marley’s son Julian Marley, helped to develop his own separate, namesake cannabis brand, JuJu Royal, which creates premium cannabis and cannabidiol products. Juju Royal, like so many other brands, are cashing in on the “health and wellness,” buzz that has globally taken hold of marketing medical marijuana.

JuJu Royal is a subsidiary of GEA Technologies, a Calgary, Alberta, Canada-based company that trades on the Canadian Securities Exchange, as JUJU.A. According to Juju Royal’s website, “All of the plants for our products are grown in the U.S.A. using organic farming.”

With their established companies  Marley Natural and JuJu Royal in full swing, they will probably expand their cultivation operations to their native Jamaica, either once recreational growing is legalized, or legislation frees up to allow Jamaican cannabis to be exported to the United States and elsewhere. That could potentially occur by 2022 just as easily as Motley Fool’s other predictions.

1. Israel

 

Israel is light years ahead of the cannabis game. It is unfathomable why so many periodicals covering pot overlook this tiny nation. An Israeli organic chemist, Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, and his partner, Y. Gaoni were the first scientists to isolate Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the psychoactive component within the plant. The entire free world has two Israelis to thank for their discovery.

In February of this year, Mr. POTUS Trump asked Israel to stop exportingmedical marijuana. Even so, Israel-based global cannabis brand, Tikun Olam(Hebrew for “Repair the World”), is bringing its pioneering medicinal to Puerto Rico through an exclusive licensing agreement with iaso Corporation.

iaso, a leading San Juan-based science and technology company, is Puerto Rico’s only all-indoor cultivation facility, employing soil-less, aeroponic technology. iaso will cultivate proprietary Tikun Olam cannabis strains, including the widely researched high-CBD strain, Avidekel.

iaso will also distribute Tikun Olam’s products throughout the Commonwealth in 2019.  The arrangement with iaso is the tenth struck in the United States by Tikun Olam’s US-Israeli joint venture, TO Global LLC (Tikun). With so much exciting expansion occurring by Tikun Olam, Israel tops our list.

Tikun Olam has 40% of the market share in Israel, and even though they are not a publicly traded company, their proprietary technology and research are licensed worldwide, by other companies that may be publicly traded.

“If one is to look at a county that is at the forefront of the cannabis industry, they need to consider Israel at the top of their list.  From the early discoveries from Dr. Mechoulam to the significant work in identifying the endocannabinoid system, Israel has been leading the path for some of the most significant advancements in cannabis science.  As the first nation to legalize medical cannabis over a decade ago, Israel has allowed companies like Tikun Olam, as well as medical, research and educational institutions, to undertake the groundbreaking research that has created the basis for some of the advancements in this fast-growing industry,” said Stephen Gardner, Chief Marketing Officer of Tikun Olam, USA.

To read more visit: https://420intel.com/articles/2018/08/27/top-8-emerging-countries-cannabis-space

Surprisingly, these 2 popular marijuana products won’t be legal in Canada

After months of debate between Canada’s Senate and its House of Commons, and following years of promises from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, our neighbor to the north stands on the verge of becoming the first industrialized country in the world to legalize recreational marijuana.

Subsequent to the passage of the Cannabis Act on June 19, Trudeau set a date of Oct. 17, 2018 as the official in-dispensary launch for adult-use weed sales. The four-month delay was to give provinces enough time to get their regulatory infrastructure in place, as well as allow growers and cannabis supply chains ample time to get their products into retail locations.

The legalization of recreational pot is expected to generate big bucks for the industry, and hopefully for enthusiastic investors, too. Already bringing in a few hundred million dollars annually from domestic medical marijuana sales and via exports to foreign countries where medical weed is legal, Canada’s pot industry could add up to $5 billion in annual sales once it’s fully up to scale. Those are eye-popping numbers that’ll clearly make Canada the leader in pot progressivism.

Sorry, folks, but these popular pot products won’t be legal in Canada come October 17

Yet considering how aggressive Canada’s lawmakers have been with marijuana, it’s almost a head-scratcher that two very popular cannabis products won’t be legal when the proverbial green flag waves on Oct. 17. While dried cannabis and cannabis oils have been given the green light for sale and consumption, Canadians and tourists looking for edibles containing cannabis, as well as cannabis-infused beverages, are going to be disappointed.

For the sake of simplicity, and given that lawmakers in Parliament already missed Trudeau’s hopeful July 1 deadline to legalize, bill C-45, as the Cannabis Act also is known, addressed products that weren’t contemplated in the bill with an amendment. Essentially, this amendment requires the Senate and House of Commons to address the Cannabis Act in the future for products like edibles and infused-beverages, which weren’t included in the original bill.

When will that happen? While clearly nothing is set in stone, Parliament is expected to take up discussion on edibles and infused beverages sometime next year. If the two houses of Parliament can come to an agreement, both of these popular products could hit dispensary shelves at some point next year.

Of course, it’s worth pointing out that a lot will depend on the supply-and-demand outlook within the domestic industry, as well as how successfully provinces are at regulating the weed industry on the front line. In other words, the more hiccups there are, the less likely Parliament will feel pressured to push through legislation on edibles and/or cannabis-infused beverages.

A brewer carefully examining a pint of beer.

Legal or not, big deals are brewing

However, the fact that it could be months, a year, or perhaps even longer before Parliament addresses edibles and infused beverages hasn’t stopped the alcohol industry from making big cannabis deals. A little more than a week ago, Corona and Modelo beer-maker Constellation Brands (NYSE:STZ) turned heads when it made a $3.8 billion equity investment in Canopy Growth Corp. (NYSE:CGC), the largest marijuana stock by market cap.

This wasn’t Constellation’s first foray with Canopy Growth, either. In late October 2017, it acquired a 9.9% equity stake for roughly $190 million. Then in June, it gobbled up a third of Canopy’s 600 million Canadian dollars (just over $450 million) convertible note offering. Convertible notes give the holder the option of turning their debt into shares of common stock.

By purchasing these convertible notes, Constellation Brands gave itself the opportunity to further build its equity stake in Canopy Growth. Plus, with the 139.7 million warrants Constellation received as part of its newest equity investment, it could eventually push its stake to over 50% if these warrants are exercised.

The duo should be working together on a number of projects, one of which likely will be cannabis-infused beverages. Canopy Growth obviously understands the ins and outs of pot production, while Constellation can bring its marketing and distribution expertise to the table to expand the reach of Canopy’s products.

Two businessmen shaking hands.

In similar fashion, on August 1, Molson Coors Brewing (NYSE:TAP) announced that it had chosen the Hydropothecary Corporation (NASDAQOTH:HYYDFas its cannabis partner. The selection was a bit of a surprise, as Hydropothecary may not even wind up as a top-10 producer once capacity expansion for the industry is complete. However, Hydropothecary does have one thing working in its favor: a 200,000-kilogram, five-year supply deal with Quebec. This deal may likely have shown Molson Coors Brewing that Hydropothecary was ready for the main stage.

With Molson Coors’ Canadian and U.S. beer sales declining and its Canadian market share shrinking over the past decade, it’s hoping that a joint venture with Hydropothecary (Molson will own 57.5% of the joint venture) focused on infused beverages will turn things around.

Beer makers are counting on the cannabis industry to make a difference in their top and bottom line. The big question is: How long will it take before that happens?

To read more visit: https://420intel.ca/articles/2018/08/27/surprisingly-these-2-popular-marijuana-products-wont-be-legal-canada

Marijuana use is rising among pregnant patients. Not so fast, doctors warn

Marijuana may be losing its image as a dangerous drug, but mounting research suggests women should steer clear of it if they are pregnant or breastfeeding, according to new recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

The advice comes as more than half of the states, including California, have legalized marijuana for medical or recreational use. Growing acceptance of the drug has made it seem harmless, or even beneficial. As a result, doctors fret that more and more babies are being exposed to the drug.

The march toward legalization has outpaced scientific research about marijuana’s health effects. Because it is a Schedule 1 drug — one with potential for abuse and no approved medical use — studies have been limited by federal law.

But in a detailed review of existing safety data, researchers cited concerns about marijuana’s effect on children’s short-term growth and long-term neurological development. Their findings were published Monday in the journal Pediatrics.

“Women should definitely be counseled that it’s not a good idea to use marijuana while pregnant,” said Dr. Seth Ammerman, a clinical professor of pediatrics at Stanford who worked on the report.

In addition, he said, “if you’re breastfeeding, we would encourage you to cut back or quit.” However, if a new mother is not able or willing to do so, she should continue nursing. “The benefits of breastfeeding would outweigh the potential exposure to the infant,” he said.

A second report, also published in Pediatrics, found that THC, the molecule responsible for most of marijuana’s psychoactive effects, accumulates in breast milk for up to six days after the mother’s last use.

The findings come as marijuana use among pregnant women is rising. Data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health show that the proportion of pregnant women who said they used marijuana in the past month increased from 2.4% in 2002 to 3.9% in 2014, according to a study in the Journal of the American Medical Assn. A separate JAMA report of pregnant women treated at Kaiser Permanente medical offices in Northern California found that marijuana use by pregnant women jumped from 4% in 2009 to 7% in 2016.

In studies of urban, young and socioeconomically disadvantaged pregnant women, 15% to 28% reported using the drug, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Unlike for alcohol and cigarettes, marijuana may not carry a safety warning for pregnant women, even when it is sold legally. California requires safety warnings, but many other states do not.

“There’s a myth out there that it’s benign. And for many adults who are sporadic users, that’s probably true,” Ammerman said. But when it’s used by women who are pregnant or nursing, “it may be harmful.”

Of particular concern, he said, is that the potency of THC in marijuana has more than quadrupled since 1983. Several of the largest studies on marijuana and health were conducted when potency was much lower, according to the academy’s new report.

Scientists have found that THC can cross the placenta and accumulate in the brain and fat of a growing fetus. The limited studies available suggest that prenatal exposure to marijuana could interfere with children’s executive functioning, causing problems with concentration, attention, impulse control and problem-solving.

Nonetheless, online mothers groups are filled with women touting the benefits of using marijuana during pregnancy, citing the drug as a remedy for the nausea of morning sickness.

Cannabis dispensaries are another source of dubious information. A study in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, for example, found that nearly 70% of dispensaries in Colorado recommended marijuana to treat morning sickness during the first trimester despite a lack of evidence that marijuana use is safe or indicated for morning sickness. The worst nausea occurs during the first trimester, when the developing fetus might be most vulnerable to the effects of substances like THC.

“As health professionals, we need to educate women that there are a lot of concerns both for the fetus and for later development,” said Kelly Young-Wolff, a research scientist at the Kaiser Permanente Northern California Division of Research, who was not involved in the new Pediatrics reports.

But convincing women of the dangers of cannabis use during pregnancy can be challenging — especially when they’ve already decided that using it is safe.

On Facebook, the group “Stoner Moms” has more than 22,000 followers. And the Glow Nurture pregnancy app has several community groups devoted to marijuana users, including “420 Friendly,” “Ganja Mommies” and “CannaMoms.”

The conversations are filled with women asking not whether marijuana could be harmful, but whether smoking it could lead to a visit from Child Protective Services.

“A lot of the public equates legalization with some kind of endorsement of safety,” said Dr. Dana Gossett, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at UC San Francisco. “Of course, that’s not true.”

When she counsels patients to avoid marijuana, Gossett said, she runs into a “fair amount of indifference.”

Pregnancy is often a time when women are receptive to changing their habits for the sake of their growing baby. But while they generally accept that cigarette smoking is dangerous — that’s been clear since the 1960s — they often view marijuana as natural, and therefore harmless.

“Just because something is plant-based or natural doesn’t make it safe,” Gossett said. Arsenic, she added, is also a natural substance.

To read more visit: http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-marijuana-pregnancy-breastfeeding-20180827-story.html

4 Things Canadian Cannabis Consumers Can Do To Avoid Getting A Lifetime Ban From America

When Canada’s marijuana legalization bill received Royal Assent this past June, cannabis consumers across the country had cause for celebration. And while the magnitude of bill’s passage will continue to reverberate for months and years to come, less certain is how other countries like the United States will react to cannabis legalization.

The importance of Canada’s relationship with America can’t be overstated. Not only do the two countries share the longest undefended border in the free world, but Canada is one of America’s biggest trading partners, buying more goods from the US than China, Japan and the UK combined.  And then there’s the sheer amount of border traffic to consider.

In 2010, Canadians took almost 20 million overnight trips to the US. But that could change now because of cannabis legalization. Even though nine states have legalized recreational use and another 22 have approved medical marijuana, cannabis remains a Schedule I drug in America. And any visitor who admits to using it risks a lifetime ban from entering the US, no matter how long ago the offense might have taken place.

And there’s no reason to believe America will change that policy once legalization becomes law on October 17.

“I’ve spoken with U.S. Customs Officers and have been told that, as far as they know, it’s going to be business as usual at the border,” Len Saunders – an immigration lawyer based in Blaine, Washington – told Civilized. “They’ve said that unless they are issued guidance from US Customs and Border Control on how to handle these admissions, the policy will remain the same and will continue to be enforced.”

That should make every globetrotting cannabis consumer nervous, but you can reduce the likelihood of having a bad scene at the border by following Saunders’ tips to avoid getting a lifetime ban from America.

1. Honesty isn’t the best policy

Being forthcoming about your cannabis use is a bad idea, according to Saunders.

“A lot of people want to be open and honest with border guards when they get asked about their usage, but they simply don’t understand the consequences that can stem from that ‘honesty’,” he told Civilized.

He added that Canadian lawmakers like Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale and Border Security Minister Bill Blair are making matters more difficult by telling Canadians to be upfront about their cannabis use, even though the repercussions could have a massive impact on their freedom to travel in North America.

“Both Goodale and Blair have said Canadians should be honest with border agents, but for cannabis users, there’s no happy medium,” Saunders explained. “If you admit to having consumed marijuana, it’s a lifetime ban; if you lie about your marijuana use and they find out, that’s also a lifetime ban.”

2. Don’t lie

So if you can’t lie or tell the truth about your cannabis use without risking a lifetime ban, the only thing left is to keep quiet about your cannabis use.

“The best thing I can advise is to say nothing,” Saunders said. “Don’t answer the question. You can be denied entry that one time, but it’s nothing that will get you barred for life. The Canadian government shouldn’t be telling Canadians to be truthful because they don’t understand the consequences. They are not in the business of giving legal advice, but they also need to wake up and realize what’s going to happen after October 17 when potentially thousands upon thousands of Canadians are facing a lifetime ban from entering the US for partaking in something that’s perfectly legal within Canadian borders.”

3. ‘Have your shit together’

Of course, the best case scenario would be to avoid getting asked about using cannabis in the first place. Your best bet to fly under the guard’s marijuana radar is to avoid dressing like a stereotypical stoner.

“My first tip would be to just have your shit together,” Saunders told Civilized. “Look professional and respectable because there is a lot of profiling that happens in that interaction with the border guard. If you’re in your early 20’s, crossing the border with dreadlocks, a tie dye t-shirt and baggy pants, you’re probably going to be scrutinized a lot more than a 45-year-old man that’s crossing with his wife and kids.”

4. Be polite

This one shouldn’t be too hard given Canada’s rep for politeness, but travelers should mind their manners even if border guards are being rude.

“Another important thing is to be polite, no matter the circumstance,” Saunders said. But that doesn’t mean being a pushover. Guards might try to trick you into telling too much of the truth, so you have to be ready to stand your ground.

“[T]here’s a lot of fearmongering that takes place. Be aware of that. A lot of border agents will insist you tell them truthful answers to the questions they are asking, and some even threaten the lie detector, but they can’t legally do that. If their questions have nothing to do with your admissibility to the US, the answers aren’t any of their business.”

And if you do get banned…

Getting that dreaded lifetime ban doesn’t mean you’ll never ever be allowed to set foot on American soil again. But it does mean that you’ll face a lifetime of onerous paperwork.

“You’ll need to have a waiver in order to cross the border again,” Saunders explained. “It’s something you need for the rest of your life. There was a time when requests for waivers relating to marijuana offenses were somewhat of a rarity, but following the State of Washington’s legalization of cannabis in 2012, there began a significant uptake in people needing waivers because Canadians were crossing the border stating their intentions to go buy marijuana or having admitted to smoking it in the past.”

But hopefully you won’t need that if you follow steps 1-4 closely.

To read more visit: https://www.civilized.life/articles/4-things-canadian-cannabis-consumers-can-do-to-avoid-getting-a-lifetime-ban-from-america/

UN Reviewing Marijuana’s Place With International Drug Treaties

The UN could force the US Government to reconsider Marijuana’s Schedule I classification.

Just two months after the U.N.’s World Health Organization published a report calling marijuana a “relatively safe drug” that only seems to lead to “euphoria, laughter and talkativeness,” the intergovernmental organization as a whole is reportedly diving in to determine whether it is even necessary to restrict the herb under international law. The outcome could force the United States to reconsider marijuana’s Schedule I classification on the Controlled Substances Act, according to a report from Marijuana Moment.

In June, the WHO’s Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) found that cannabis is a “relatively safe drug” and not substance that has the power to lead to fatal overdoses. It went on to explain that there is very little evidence pointing to the herb as a threat to cardiovascular health, and it even suggested that marijuana had the ability to slow the growth of cancer cells.

Most of the health concerns related to cannabis consumption, the reports states, are from smoking. But “increasing use of vaporizers and other non-smoking modes of delivery is likely to reduce” health complications.

Overall, WHO said the only adverse reactions of marijuana are “euphoria, laughter and talkativeness.”

In response to that report, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus wrote this week that, “The Committee recommended that preparations considered to be pure CBD should not be scheduled within the International Drug Control Conventions” and that “there is sufficient evidence to proceed to a Critical Review” of all things marijuana.

The organization will conduct its first-ever in-depth review of the cannabis plant in November. Scientific experts will look at the chemistry, pharmacology, toxicology, epidemiology, and therapeutic use of marijuana to determine if it belongs under international control.

“This initial evaluation is also an opportunity to identify gaps in the available scientific data,” a WHO document reads. “A critical review is carried out when there is sufficient scientific evidence to allow the ECDD to make informed an recommendation that the substance be placed under international control, or if its level of control should be changed.”

Essentially, the U.N. plans to look at both CBD and THC to make a determination as to whether the compounds still fit the dangerous drug criteria as outlined in the international drug treaties.

“Several countries permit the use of cannabis for the treatment of medical conditions such as back pain, sleep disorders, depression, post-injury pain, and multiple sclerosis,” the document reads. “The evidence presented to the Committee did not indicate that cannabis plant and cannabis resin were liable to produce ill-effects similar to these other substances that are in Schedule IV of the 1961 Convention on Narcotic Drugs. The inclusion of cannabis and cannabis resin in Schedule IV may not appear to be consistent with the criteria for Schedule IV.”

If the U.N. moves to change the status of the cannabis plant, the United States government would be required to review its Schedule I status.

To read more visit: https://thefreshtoast.com/cannabis/un-reviewing-marijuanas-place-with-international-drug-treaties/