Monthly Archives: July 2019

Marijuana Company of America Issues Update on Proposed Reverse Stock Split

Marijuana Company of America Issues Update on Proposed Reverse Stock Split

The first time it happened to Mountain Strong Hemp Company in Steamboat Springs, Colo., in late June, a pilot refused to take off with a shipment of legal hemp. The cargo included clones that she’d mistaken as marijuana—hemp plants that were destined for Shady Lane Farms in Tennessee, according to Mountain Strong Hemp Company’s founder and CEO, Nathan Brough. 

When police were called to the scene and verified the shipment was indeed legal, the pilot still refused to carry the packages, Brough tells Cannabis Business Times.  “FedEx [the courier] returned the package to us,” he adds, pointing out that the company is still waiting for a refund.

A day later, Mountain Strong Hemp Company turned to UPS to ship the hemp—and police were again called to inspect the packages. Thanks to detailed paperwork, officers “realized that it was hemp and was OK to ship,” recalls Brough. But even so, UPS was still hesitant to proceed with the shipment. After complaints from Shady Lane Farms, UPS agreed to send the hemp to its final destination—but “told us not to ship with them again,” Brough says.

Unfortunately, stories like this are all too common for companies attempting to ship hemp.

“There’s a lack of education about what hemp is and how it’s different from the intoxicating cannabis that contains significant amounts of THC,” explains Josh Hendrix, director of U.S. hemp production for CV Sciences. It’s that lack of education can often lead to problems in transit. “When you have a truck full of green hemp material fresh out of the field,” he says, “to the average person, it’s automatically marijuana due to the look and smell—and that’s very unfortunate, but it is just where we are right now with this crop, for the most part.”

Big Sky Scientific has encountered several problems while attempting to receive or ship its hemp products. In January, Idaho law enforcement stopped 6,700 lbs. of hemp on the way from an Oregon grower to Big Sky Scientific in Colorado. (The driver was arrested and charged with felony drug trafficking.) Since then, “we’ve been stopped a few more times,” says Big Sky Scientific CEO Ryan Shore. 

“Police officers have a very difficult job, and I think it’s important we acknowledge that,” Shore says. “They are required to stop marijuana and allow hemp to pass. How can they make that determination? There is currently no field test that can accurately assess the difference.” And that, Shore explains, “is why it is so important to make their job easier.”

With that in mind, here are some lessons learned from hemp shipments gone wrong—so that you can avoid them, and the costly legal fines and potential jail time that go with them.

Make sure the driver is educated about what he or she is transporting.

“We make sure that our driver can communicate clearly to the officer and is educated about what they are shipping,” Shore says. To do that, “we always explain all our transportation documents to each driver on every shipment” before he or she hits the road, Shore says. 

Consider shipping with USPS.

After its experience with FedEx and UPS, Mountain Strong Hemp Company now uses the U.S. Postal Service to ship its hemp, says Brough. “We finally learned that USPS is the only way to ship CBD and hemp products,” he says. “USPS goes by the law and not company policy.”

Hendrix agrees that USPS might be your best bet. “You are seeing much more support from the USPS, USDA, and other federal agencies clarifying the legality of interstate commerce as it pertains to hemp material from the farm, processed goods, and finished products,” he says.

Keep an accurate, detailed paper trail.

According to Hendrix, “the paper trail on hemp and hemp goods is the obvious answer” to shipment problems. “Always having the legal documents required by your state and the state you’re going to is a must,” Hendrix says. And so is “good communication,” he adds.

Big Sky Scientific prepares all relevant shipping documents in a binder for safekeeping. Shore recommends you also “make sure someone will be available to answer the phone should the police officers want to talk to somebody at your business as well as the driver.”

Create clear labels and bills of lading.

Big Sky Scientific makes sure its hemp products are clearly labeled before they’re shipped, and “we make sure our bill of lading [BOL] is completely accurate,” Shore explains. (A BOL functions as a contract between a freight carrier and shipper, so it’s very important that it’s accurate. Accuracy can prevent misunderstandings between the shipper and customers.)

Published at Wed, 31 Jul 2019 20:33:00 +0000

Veritas Farms Nationwide Distribution Reaches Over 4,500 Retail Stores

Veritas Farms Nationwide Distribution Reaches Over 4,500 Retail Stores

Veritas Farms, Inc. (OTCQB: VFRM), a vertically integrated agribusiness focused on the production of full spectrum hemp oil products with naturally occurring cannabinoids, is pleased to announce that its Veritas Farms™ products have reached and surpassed over 4,500 points of retail distribution.

Veritas Farms’ first and second quarter efforts in chain retail resulted in multiple national chain retailers launching Veritas Farms™ products in their stores.  Total chain retail distribution added during this quarter represents thousands of additional stores across more than a dozen states.

Alexander M. Salgado, CEO and co-founder of Veritas Farms, Inc., commented, “With our continued growth into independent retailer networks combined with the success of recent chain retail launches, we have reached distribution of our Veritas Farms™ products into over 4,500 retail stores nationwide.  These established channels include prominent national chain retailers in pharmacy, grocery, and home-goods, as well as, independent retailers in grocery, pharmacy, chiropractic and medical professionals, spas, salons, hospitality, travel and specialty stores.”

“As the Full Spectrum Hemp Oil category continues to build mainstream visibility and acceptance, the Veritas Farms team will maintain its efforts to create and capitalize on even more new and expanded retail opportunities.  We expect this will enable us to leverage our industry leading reputation for quality and consistency and will lead to a continued expansion of our retail distribution network going-forward.”

Veritas Farms™ brand full-spectrum hemp extract products can be found at several leading online and brick-and-mortar retailers across the United States.  For a complete listing of retailers and to purchase Veritas Farms™ products online, visit www.theveritasfarms.com.

About Veritas Farms, Inc.

Veritas Farms, Inc. (OTCQB: VFRM) is a vertically integrated agribusiness focused on producing superior quality, whole plant, full spectrum hemp oils and extracts containing naturally occurring cannabinoids.   The Company currently owns and operates a 140-acre farm and production facility in Pueblo, Colorado, and is registered with the Colorado Department of Agriculture to grow industrial hemp.  The Company markets and sells products under its Veritas Farms™ brand and manufactures private label products for a number of leading distributors and retailers.

Veritas Farms™ brand full spectrum hemp oil products include vegan capsules, tinctures, formulations for sublingual applications and infused edibles, lotions, salves, and oral syringes in a variety of size formats and flavors.  All Veritas Farms™ brand products are third-party laboratory tested for strength and purity.  The Company files periodic reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which can be viewed at www.sec.gov.

For additional information and online product purchase, visit www.theveritasfarms.com.

Veritas Farms, Inc. – Investor Contact
Toll-Free: (888) 549-7888
E-mail: ir@theveritasfarms.com

Veritas Farms, Inc. – Social Media
Instagram:  www.instagram.com/veritasfarmsofficial/
Facebook: www.facebook.com/VeritasFarmsOfficial/
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/veritasfarms/
Twitter: www.twitter.com/theveritasfarms

Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  All statements, other than statements of historical fact, including those with respect to the Company’s mission statement and growth strategy, are “forward-looking statements.”  Although the Company’s management believes that such forward-looking statements are reasonable, it cannot guarantee that such expectations are, or will be, correct.  These forward-looking statements involve many risks and uncertainties, which could cause the Company’s future results to differ materially from those anticipated.  Potential risks and uncertainties include, among others, general economic conditions and conditions affecting the industries in which the Company operates; the uncertainty of regulatory requirements and approvals; and the ability to obtain necessary financing on acceptable terms or at all.  Additional information regarding the factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements is available in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  The Company assumes no obligation to update any of the information contained or referenced in this press release.

Published at Wed, 31 Jul 2019 11:35:08 +0000

Woodstock Music Festival Can License Its Name to Marijuana Brand

Woodstock Music Festival Can License Its Name to Marijuana Brand

As market consolidation continues across the cannabis industry and larger companies enter the space, Compassionate Cultivation, a vertically integrated medical cannabis company in Texas, has placed a focus on in-house breeding to better serve its patients and differentiate itself from the competition.

In mid-July, the company introduced Brazos, its second original cultivar. Brazos was bred in-house at Compassionate Cultivation’s facility in Manchaca, Texas, and joins Waterloo, an original variety that the company introduced last December.

Like Waterloo, Brazos produces a 20:1 CBD-to-THC ratio, according to Compassionate Cultivation Vice President of Operations Taylor Kirk. A cross of two cultivars that are rich in CBD, Brazos is a Type 3 cannabis plant that is high in CBD and low in THC. The variety is linalool-dominant, and contains several other terpenes such as myrcene, pinene, limonene and terpinene in significant concentrations, Kirk said.

Waterloo and Brazos have two different terpene profiles, and thus complement each other fairly well, Kirk said. “Both are linalool-dominant, which is fantastic for the types of patients who will be utilizing the 20:1 medicine for seizure control, for other convulsant properties, pain properties—things like that. So, we’re very proud of the terpene profile.”

Brazos has a perfect 20:1 ratio in extraction, Kirk added, whereas Waterloo produces more CBD. In addition, Brazos’ compact plant structure allows Compassionate Cultivation to increase its yield, Kirk said.

“It’s got an upright, tight, compact growth habit, and it’s a high-yielding plant, so that enables us to have more plants per square foot of bench space and increase the yields that we’re achieving in our flower rooms,” he said.

The name Brazos is a nod to Compassionate Cultivation’s Texas heritage. The cultivar is named after the Brazos River, which divides East and West Texas, and Washington-on-the-Brazos is the historical site where the Texas Constitution was signed, Kirk said.

A Focus on Breeding

Compassionate Cultivation launched in February 2018 as Texas’ first retail dispensary and is one of three companies licensed in the state to grow cannabis and process it into low-THC formulations of CBD oil for the state’s medical cannabis program. While the program continues to get up and running, Compassionate Cultivation has placed a focus on breeding, Kirk said.

RELATED: Cultivating Compassion

“We’re interested in breeding … our own cultivars and then [working] with those to select the right chemovars for our patients here in Texas,” he said. “We’ve had the opportunity, fortunately, to do a lot of in-house R&D through breeding because our market’s been a little slow to take off because of the regulations here in Texas. So, we’ve focused on really making sure we have the highest quality products and plants and genetics to work with.”

Photo courtesy of Compassionate Cultivation

Brazos, Compassionate Cultivation’s newest cultivar, is linalool-dominant with a 20:1 CBD-to-THC ratio.

Compassionate Cultivation has an in-house analytical lab that allows the company to test plant samples to determine the type of chemovar, the ratio of CBD to THC and overall potency, Kirk said. The company has started every plant from regular seed stock—not feminized seed stock—which Kirk said offers more robust offspring and provides Compassionate Cultivation with male plants to use for breeding.

“We use regular seed, and when we get males, we select the best-looking male plants, and then we’ll have a small group of males that we’ll grow out in our vegetation room,” he said. “[We] really monitor their growth habits and take samples of their leaves and determine which ratio of THC to CBD [they have], and that’s really the guiding factor initially for whatever we’re breeding at this time.”

Once the desired THC-to-CBD ratio is found, Compassionate Cultivation can breed another plant with the same ratio but a different terpenoid profile, which offers patients variety. Eventually, the company will use emerging research to target specific cannabinoids and terpenoids, Kirk added.

The company selects its favorite male and female plants, and will match them together to make a hybrid, Kirk said. “That seed produced from that hybridization is now our new cultivar that’s unique to us through our selection process from seed stock and the breeding effort. We have a special breeding room that utilizes open pollination, so the male can grow in a natural way, and once its pollen is released, the female will be pollinated and created the seed that we harvest once it’s dried, and we grow those seeds out.”

A Commitment to Leadership

Compassionate Cultivation’s breeding program is part of the company’s overall desire to be a leader in all facets of its business, Kirk said.

“Most of the time, you don’t find producers at large scale breeding,” he said. “Usually, you have breeders in one bucket and commercial production in another, or medicinal production in another. You do have a few rare companies out there doing what we’re doing, so we’re definitely not the only ones that operate this way, but it does offer differentiation … that we can target certain things that we’re after.”

Compassionate Cultivation will continue to acquire genetics from the market to use in its breeding program, but once the company has identified the type of plant and the terpene profile it desires, it will breed those genetics into its own in-house cultivars.

“If you have your own [varieties], nobody is going to have that, so it’s a unique offer,” Kirk said. “Nobody is going to go get Waterloo. Nobody is going to go get Brazos. Another thing is, obviously, that uniqueness is intellectual property that we own, we created, [and] we spent a lot of time, money and energy into developing.”

The company is interested in patenting its plants over time, Kirk said, to maintain an advantage over the conglomerates that he predicts will eventually enter the market. “When they do, if you have your own protected plant material, no one can come after you for royalties on something they may have acquired or purchased. … We’re protecting all of our investments, all of our work, and really want to have quality plants of our own that we can work with.”

Compassionate Cultivation has plans to introduce a new, full-spectrum product line soon, Kirk added, and the company is also working on another new cultivar, which will be unveiled in the coming months.

In the meantime, the Texas Legislature voted this year to expand the state’s medical cannabis program, adding new qualifying conditions and removing the limit on CBD content in finished products.

“That opens up opportunities for us to start to formulate some new ratios in our medicine and also work with breeding new plants with different types of ratios,” Kirk said.

With expansion of the state program, Compassionate Cultivation will likely have an influx of new patients, which may eventually mean less time for the company’s breeding efforts, he added.

“At some point, we’re going to be so busy keeping up with the demand of our patient population that breeding’s going to slow down a little bit, but we’re definitely committed to developing multiple offers of multiple types of cannabis,” Kirk said. “We’re going to continue to work toward other types of cannabis that we may need for our new conditions that were added and for medicine that we’re producing, and to have as many plant types as we need for our operation to run efficiently and effectively.”

Published at Tue, 30 Jul 2019 19:17:00 +0000

Emerald Health Therapeutics Appoints Chief Executive Officer

Emerald Health Therapeutics Appoints Chief Executive Officer

VICTORIA, British Columbia, July 30, 2019  — Emerald Health Therapeutics, Inc. “Emerald” (TSXV: EMH; OTCQX: EMHTF) has appointed Riaz Bandali as Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Bandali has over 25 years of experience in life sciences, with expertise in global operations, strategy development, innovation cultivation, M&A, and investment management spanning contract clinical and research services, analytical instrumentation, lab services and venture capital. Mr. Bandali most recently served as President, Early Phase Clinical Services, for Syneos Health, an international clinical research organization.

“Mr. Bandali has driven the vision, strategy, innovation and execution of growth plans in a number of life sciences enterprises. He has managed rapidly growing businesses and global teams of over 900 people to achieve significant sales growth and profitability – and he has a meticulous focus on process and the bottom-line,” said Dr. Avtar Dhillon, Executive Chairman and President of Emerald. “Emerald has implemented unique infrastructure and strategic partnerships to form the foundation for its growth in the emerging global legal cannabis and cannabinoid market, and Riaz is very well-equipped to lead our team to leverage and build on our competitive positioning with the goal of achieving growing, sustainable, and profitable revenue streams.”

Mr. Bandali previously served as President, Early Stage Development, inVentiv Health Clinical; SVP, Strategy and Business Development, AB Sciex and Molecular Devices; Vice President and General Manager, Global Early Stage Development at MDS Pharma Services; and Venture Partner and Vice President, MDS Capital.

Mr. Bandali holds a Master of Business Administration from McGill University, a Bachelor of Science from the University of British Columbia and has completed the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School.

Expansion of Emerald’s C-suite

Emerald has also appointed Thierry Schmidt as its Chief Commercial Officer. Mr. Schmidt will oversee all sales, marketing, and product development for Emerald. He is a marketing, brand/product management, sales, and business development expert who brings over twenty years of consumer goods experience, having worked at L’Oréal, Avon, and British American Tobacco. Mr. Schmidt will maintain his current position as President of Verdélite, Emerald’s cannabis cultivation, production and packaging facility in St. Eustache, Quebec.

“We have committed significant resources to the construction and launch of our Pure Sunfarms joint venture, which we believe is a leader among Canadian cannabis greenhouse operations. We have also substantially completed the build-out of other strategic operating assets and partnerships and are preparing to move them into commercialization ramp-up,” said Dr. Dhillon. “As we advance our product innovation and development initiatives focused on differentiated, value-added products serving consumers seeking both recreational and wellness benefits, we are pleased to have Thierry’s expertise and energy contributing to these important next steps of our growth plan.”

Avtar Dhillon, MD, will continue in his role as Executive Chairman and President. Rob Hill and Sean Rathbone will continue in their respective roles as Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer.

The appointments of Messrs. Bandali and Schmidt are subject to the customary approval of the TSX Venture Exchange.

About Emerald Health Therapeutics, Inc.

Emerald Health Therapeutics, Inc. is a Canadian licensed producer of cannabis products, with strategic initiatives focused on differentiated, value-added product development for medical and adult-use customers supported by novel intellectual property, large-scale cultivation, extraction, and softgel encapsulation, as well as unique marketing and distribution channels. Its 50%-owned Pure Sunfarms operation in British Columbia has reached its full run-rate annual production of approximately 75,000 kg in its first 1.1 million square foot greenhouse Delta 3 operation; a second 1.1 million square foot greenhouse is planned to be in full production by the end of 2020. Emerald’s two other wholly-owned facilities in Québec, a high-quality indoor growing and processing facility, and in British Columbia, an organic greenhouse and outdoor operation, are completing construction and are working toward final permitting. Emerald has also contracted for approximately 1,200 acres of hemp annually in 2019 to 2022 with the objective of extracting low-cost CBD. Its team is highly experienced in life sciences, product development, large-scale agri-business, and marketing.

Please visit www.emeraldhealth.ca for more information or contact:

Rob Hill, Chief Financial Officer
(800) 757 3536 Ext. # 5

Emerald Investor Relations
(800) 757 3536 Ext. #5
invest@emeraldhealth.ca

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements: Certain statements made in this press release that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements and are subject to important risks, uncertainties and assumptions, both general and specific, which give rise to the possibility that actual results or events could differ materially from our expectations expressed in or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such statements include obtaining required regulatory approvals; production and processing capacity of various facilities; expansion of facilities; obtaining additional cultivation license; production at various facilities; receipt of hemp deliveries; and anticipated production costs.

We cannot guarantee that any forward-looking statement will materialize, and readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties related to, among other things, changes of law and regulations; changes of government; failure to obtain regulatory approvals; failure to obtain necessary financing; results of production and sale activities; results of scientific research; regulatory changes; changes in prices and costs of inputs; demand for labour; demand for products; failure of counter-parties to perform contractual obligations; as well as the risk factors described in the Company’s annual information form and other regulatory filings. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release represent our expectations as of the date hereof. Forward-looking statements are presented for the purpose of providing information about management’s current expectations and plans and allowing investors and others to obtain a better understanding of our anticipated operating environment. Readers are cautioned that such information may not be appropriate for other purposes. The Company undertakes no obligations to update or revise such statements to reflect new circumstances or unanticipated events as they occur, unless required by applicable law.

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Published at Tue, 30 Jul 2019 12:45:34 +0000

Veritas Farms Announces Expanded Partnership with Kroger Family of Stores for Additional Multi-State Distribution of Products

Veritas Farms Announces Expanded Partnership with Kroger Family of Stores for Additional Multi-State Distribution of Products

Veritas Farms, Inc. (OTCQB: VFRM), a vertically integrated agribusiness focused on the production of full spectrum hemp oil products with naturally occurring cannabinoids, is pleased to announce that it is expanding its distribution partnership with Kroger Family of Stores into five new states and adding additional stores in existing states.

The additional distribution extends the already sizable partnership to five new states, including Texas, Virginia, Georgia, Montana, and Utah and totaling more than 400 new stores.  Featured products of the expansion include Veritas Farms™ full spectrum hemp oil topical products; salves, moisturizing lotion, and lip balm.

Already featured in 945 Kroger Family of Stores, including banners Kroger, Dillons, Fry’s, Fred Meyer, King Soopers, Mariano’s, Pick ‘n Save, QFC and Smith’s, across 17 states (Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming). The combined additional distribution will now feature Veritas Farms topical products in a total of 22 states and 1,350 locations across the Kroger Family of Stores.

Alexander M. Salgado, CEO and co-founder of Veritas Farms, Inc., commented, “We are pleased to expand our partnership with Kroger Family of Stores.  As a nationally recognized leader in retail, their commitment to growing this category signals the success experienced thus far, the potential for continued growth, and the importance of these products’ availability to consumers and retailers. To find a participating store, use the locator tool on the Veritas Farms website.”

For additional information regarding Veritas Farms™ and to purchase product online, visit www.theveritasfarms.com.

About Veritas Farms, Inc.

Veritas Farms, Inc. (OTCQB: VFRM) is a vertically integrated agribusiness focused on producing superior quality, whole plant, full spectrum hemp oils and extracts containing naturally occurring cannabinoids. The Company currently owns and operates a 140-acre farm and production facilities in Pueblo, Colorado, and is registered with the Colorado Department of Agriculture to grow industrial hemp. The Company markets and sells products under its Veritas Farms™ brand and manufactures private label products for a number of leading distributors and retailers.

Veritas Farms™ brand full spectrum hemp extract products include vegan capsules, tinctures, formulations for sublingual applications and infused edibles, lotions, salves, and oral syringes in a variety of size formats and flavors.  All Veritas Farms™ brand products are third-party laboratory tested for strength and purity. The Company files periodic reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which can be viewed at www.sec.gov.

For additional information and online product purchase, visit www.theveritasfarms.com.

Veritas Farms, Inc. – Social Media

Instagram:  www.instagram.com/veritasfarmsofficial/

Facebook: www.facebook.com/VeritasFarmsOfficial/

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/veritasfarms/

Twitter: www.twitter.com/theveritasfarms

Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  All statements, other than statements of historical fact, including those with respect to the Company’s mission statement and growth strategy, are “forward-looking statements.”  Although the Company’s management believes that such forward-looking statements are reasonable, it cannot guarantee that such expectations are, or will be, correct. These forward-looking statements involve many risks and uncertainties, which could cause the Company’s future results to differ materially from those anticipated.  Potential risks and uncertainties include, among others, general economic conditions and conditions affecting the industries in which the Company operates; the uncertainty of regulatory requirements and approvals; and the ability to obtain necessary financing on acceptable terms or at all. Additional information regarding the factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements is available in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  The Company assumes no obligation to update any of the information contained or referenced in this press release.

Veritas Farms, Inc. - Investor Contact
Toll-Free: (888) 549-7888
E-mail: ir@theveritasfarms.com

Published at Mon, 29 Jul 2019 11:46:20 +0000

UFC Teams Up With Aurora Cannabis on CBD Study in Fighters

UFC Teams Up With Aurora Cannabis on CBD Study in Fighters

Product liability is one of the largest exposures the cannabis industry faces, and all businesses are at risk, no matter their place in the supply chain, according to Brian Henry, a senior vice president in HUB International’s cannabis practice.

HUB, an insurance broker that provides business and personal insurance as well as employee benefits, maintains that everything from product contamination to DUI cases can become a risk for a cannabis business. Continued monitoring of business exposures related to cultivation, production and distribution practices is needed to reduce these risks, and Henry cautions that businesses get what they pay for in terms of coverage; operators should focus on obtaining the proper policy for their business rather than finding the lowest price tag.

First and foremost, Henry says, cannabis business owners should be wary of specific product exclusions that may be lurking in their policies. Generally, an insurance policy will grant a business a broad range of coverage, which is then narrowed through exclusions. Cannabis companies should ask their insurance brokers to explain any and all exclusions in their policies, Henry says.

“I want to see every single exclusion that the underwriter is attaching to the policy,” he says. “Again, it varies by insurance company. There can be a lot of variation in the exclusions that insurance companies add to their policies. You need to work with an experienced broker who takes the time to review these insurance policies word-for-word to really understand what coverage is there, and more importantly, what coverage is not there.”

Some exclusions can bar insurance coverage on the very products that cannabis businesses produce and sell, Henry adds.

“For instance,” he says, “we saw a vape pen manufacturer that had an electronic smoking device exclusion. We also see various illegal acts exclusions, and those can be problematic at times, depending on how broadly they’re written, because obviously [cannabis is] still illegal federally. You have ingredient exclusions, and we’ve come across numerous cannabis companies that had no clue that many of the ingredients they were using in their edibles were not covered.”

Health hazard exclusions can also be problematic for cannabis businesses, Henry adds, and can include exclusions for cardiovascular disease and cancer, as well as psychoactive exclusions.

Identifying Exposures

According to Henry, every business in the cannabis supply chain has the same exposure: if an end user is injured due to the product, he or she will most likely sue every point in the supply chain.

Contracts with vendors often include language that makes the product manufacturer responsible for negligence should a product liability claim arise, Henry says. Therefore, it is important to ensure that the manufacturer has an adequate insurance policy to protect the other businesses in the supply chain.

“A lot of folks say, ‘Oh, we have insurance. We don’t need to worry about it,’” Henry says. “They may have insurance, but do we know what that insurance actually covers? You can have a manufacturer that really doesn’t have much insurance at all, so then you’re relying on those indemnification agreements within the contract, if they even exist, to protect you.”

Cannabis companies should also consider coverage for product recalls, Henry adds. If a product is recalled due to pesticides or incorrect labeling of THC content, for example, the business is required to cover any costs incurred to get the product off the shelves.

“That can be very, very expensive,” Henry says.

You Get What You Pay For

Ensuring proper product liability coverage comes down to finding the right broker and policy for your unique business, Henry says.

“I think the key here is buyer beware and you get what you pay for,” he says. “There are certain policies that are going to be out there that aren’t going to be worth the paper that they’re written on.”

Cannabis businesses should have the same product liability insurance as product manufacturers in other industries, Henry says, and cannabis operators should always pay close attention to exclusions.

“I would say exclusions are a big deal,” he says. “From our perspective … not all insurance policies are created equal, [and] certainly not all brokerages are created equal, either.”

Insurance does not exist for every risk a cannabis operator faces, so having a broker that understands the limitations of the marketplace and who is able to obtain the broadest coverages available is paramount.

Published at Fri, 26 Jul 2019 12:49:00 +0000

CannTrust Announces Senior Leadership Changes

CannTrust Announces Senior Leadership Changes

Product liability is one of the largest exposures the cannabis industry faces, and all businesses are at risk, no matter their place in the supply chain, according to Brian Henry, a senior vice president in HUB International’s cannabis practice.

HUB, an insurance broker that provides business and personal insurance as well as employee benefits, maintains that everything from product contamination to DUI cases can become a risk for a cannabis business. Continued monitoring of business exposures related to cultivation, production and distribution practices is needed to reduce these risks, and Henry cautions that businesses get what they pay for in terms of coverage; operators should focus on obtaining the proper policy for their business rather than finding the lowest price tag.

First and foremost, Henry says, cannabis business owners should be wary of specific product exclusions that may be lurking in their policies. Generally, an insurance policy will grant a business a broad range of coverage, which is then narrowed through exclusions. Cannabis companies should ask their insurance brokers to explain any and all exclusions in their policies, Henry says.

“I want to see every single exclusion that the underwriter is attaching to the policy,” he says. “Again, it varies by insurance company. There can be a lot of variation in the exclusions that insurance companies add to their policies. You need to work with an experienced broker who takes the time to review these insurance policies word-for-word to really understand what coverage is there, and more importantly, what coverage is not there.”

Some exclusions can bar insurance coverage on the very products that cannabis businesses produce and sell, Henry adds.

“For instance,” he says, “we saw a vape pen manufacturer that had an electronic smoking device exclusion. We also see various illegal acts exclusions, and those can be problematic at times, depending on how broadly they’re written, because obviously [cannabis is] still illegal federally. You have ingredient exclusions, and we’ve come across numerous cannabis companies that had no clue that many of the ingredients they were using in their edibles were not covered.”

Health hazard exclusions can also be problematic for cannabis businesses, Henry adds, and can include exclusions for cardiovascular disease and cancer, as well as psychoactive exclusions.

Identifying Exposures

According to Henry, every business in the cannabis supply chain has the same exposure: if an end user is injured due to the product, he or she will most likely sue every point in the supply chain.

Contracts with vendors often include language that makes the product manufacturer responsible for negligence should a product liability claim arise, Henry says. Therefore, it is important to ensure that the manufacturer has an adequate insurance policy to protect the other businesses in the supply chain.

“A lot of folks say, ‘Oh, we have insurance. We don’t need to worry about it,’” Henry says. “They may have insurance, but do we know what that insurance actually covers? You can have a manufacturer that really doesn’t have much insurance at all, so then you’re relying on those indemnification agreements within the contract, if they even exist, to protect you.”

Cannabis companies should also consider coverage for product recalls, Henry adds. If a product is recalled due to pesticides or incorrect labeling of THC content, for example, the business is required to cover any costs incurred to get the product off the shelves.

“That can be very, very expensive,” Henry says.

You Get What You Pay For

Ensuring proper product liability coverage comes down to finding the right broker and policy for your unique business, Henry says.

“I think the key here is buyer beware and you get what you pay for,” he says. “There are certain policies that are going to be out there that aren’t going to be worth the paper that they’re written on.”

Cannabis businesses should have the same product liability insurance as product manufacturers in other industries, Henry says, and cannabis operators should always pay close attention to exclusions.

“I would say exclusions are a big deal,” he says. “From our perspective … not all insurance policies are created equal, [and] certainly not all brokerages are created equal, either.”

Insurance does not exist for every risk a cannabis operator faces, so having a broker that understands the limitations of the marketplace and who is able to obtain the broadest coverages available is paramount.

Published at Fri, 26 Jul 2019 13:36:00 +0000

Namaste Technologies Provides Update on Strategic Investments

Namaste Technologies Provides Update on Strategic Investments

Namaste Technologies Inc. (TSXV: N) (FRANKFURT: M5BQ) (OTCMKTS: NXTTF) today provided an update on in its investment portfolio including Choklat Inc. and Pineapple Express Delivery Inc..

Namaste Technologies Inc. (TSXV: N) (FRANKFURT: M5BQ) (OTCMKTS: NXTTF) (CNW Group/Namaste Technologies Inc.)

Choklat, in which Namaste acquired a 49% interest in March of 2019, has now completed and submitted its evidence package to Health Canada. Choklat has seen significant expansion while preparing for the legalization of edibles, with non-infused products now available in over 150 retail outlets across Canada, including an increasing number of Safeway and Sobeys’s stores in Western Canada. Choklat is making every effort to ensure that it can smoothly transition its business activities to a new facility nearby, transforming its current space into a state-of-the-art edibles processing facility.

“The submission of an evidence package to Health Canada is a major milestone for Choklat, and what we believe to be one of the first completed applications in the industry,” said Meni Morin, Interim CEO of Namaste Technologies. “Regulation changes announced by Health Canada in May require operators to have built a compliant facility before filing for a licence. By making a strategic investment in Choklat, and converting their existing facility, Choklat will be better prepared to meet these changes and go to market timeline. Pending approval from Health Canada, we anticipate production to begin immediately, potentially making Choklat one of the first to have product on the shelves.”

“Our team has worked diligently to grow our existing business, and ensure we are ready for potential legalization in October,” said Brad Churchil, CEO of Choklat. “Choklat currently has a non-binding agreement for edible products from a Montreal based company totaling over $3 million. Upon approval from Health Canada, we look forward to scaling rapidly to deliver on our commitments, while maintaining a focus on providing the premium product our customers know and love.”

Namaste also announces the advancement of funds related to a promissory note for Pineapple Express Delivery Inc. (“Pineapple Express“) for a total of $1,200,000 USD. The promissory note is due on March 31, 2020 and bears a 12% interest rate per annum. Under the original agreement dated July 8, 2018 Namaste has the opportunity to convert the loan into equity on August 14, 2019. If the agreement is executed, Namaste would hold a majority position in Pineapple Express.

“Cannabis delivery services provided by Pineapple Express complete our unique end-to-end business proposition and support our focus on the customer experience,” said Meni Morim, Interim CEO of Namaste Technologies. “Funding provided to Pineapple Express will allow them to scale and expand their presence, providing a seamless user experience for customers across Canada.”

On December 17, 2018, Namaste Technologies entered into a share purchase agreement to acquire common shares in Pineapple Express Delivery and an affiliated entity, representing an additional 34% equity in exchange for such number of common shares of Namaste having an aggregate value of approximately $3.1 million. The transaction closed on March 13, 2019 with Namaste now owning 49% of the issued and outstanding common shares of Pineapple Express.

About Choklat
Choklat Inc. is currently the only bean to bar chocolate maker in Alberta and the largest premium craft chocolate maker in Canada.  Where other chocolate companies simply purchase bulk chocolate to make their confections, Choklat imports some of the finest and rarest cocoa beans in the world then roasts and refines them in-house to make the company’s own proprietary chocolate which is used in all of their confections.  Since opening for the first time in 2008, Choklat has established itself throughout Western Canada as one of the most prominent luxury brands on the market today.  Choklat’s products are now in over 70 different retailers throughout Western Canada. Choklat has also just expanded regionally into Sobeys and Safeway stores – making it into more than 25 stores in the past two weeks alone. For more information, visit: www.Choklat.com

About Pineapple Express Delivery Inc.
The Pineapple Express Delivery Inc. management team has over 10 years of experience offering same-day, 60-minute delivery services in multiple industries across Canada. Pineapple Express offers a personalized experience for its customers and has established in-depth security and delivery protocols to facilitate same-day delivery of medical and recreational cannabis across the country. Pineapple Express has been providing a same day delivery option to the legal cannabis industry from October 17th, 2018 and has provincial offices set up across Canada. For more information visit: www.pineappleexpressdelivery.com

About Namaste Technologies Inc.
Namaste Technologies powers the ultimate online customer experience for medicinal cannabis and related products. Beginning with NamasteMD.com, the Company’s integrated telemedicine application, Namaste connects medical clients with health care practitioners to more readily issue and renew cannabis prescriptions online. Featuring the first Canadian Medical Sales-Only Licence, the Company’s own Cannmart.com is your ‘everything cannabis store’ offering clients a large variety of strains to fill their prescription needs. Namaste’s unique artificial intelligence (AI) engine incorporated in its platforms and related Uppy App, completes our ecosystem by identifying the right product and pairing to address specific medical cannabis requirements. Namaste also provides vaporizers and accessories across several platforms operating in several countries. Namaste’s global technology addresses local needs in a burgeoning cannabis industry requiring smart solutions. For further information about Namaste, please log onto www.Namastetechnologies.com

Information on the Company and its many products can be accessed through the links below:

NamasteTechnologies.com
NamasteMD.com
Cannmart.com
NamasteVapes.ca
Everyonedoesit.ca

FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION – This news release contains “forward-looking information” within the meaning of applicable securities laws. All statements contained herein that are not historical in nature contain forward-looking information. Forward-looking information can be identified by words or phrases such as “may”, “expect”, “likely”, “should”, “would”, “plan”, “anticipate”, “intend”, “potential”, “proposed”, “estimate”, “believe” or the negative of these terms, or other similar words, expressions and grammatical variations thereof, or statements that certain events or conditions “may” or “will” happen. The forward-looking information contained herein is made as of the date of this press release and is based on assumptions management believed to be reasonable at the time such statements were made, including management’s perceptions of future growth, results of operations, operational matters, historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other considerations that are believed to be appropriate in the circumstances. While we consider these assumptions to be reasonable based on information currently available to management, there is no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. By their nature, forward-looking information is subject to inherent risks and uncertainties that may be general or specific and which give rise to the possibility that expectations, forecasts, predictions, projections or conclusions will not prove to be accurate, that assumptions may not be correct and that objectives, strategic goals and priorities will not be achieved. A variety of factors, including known and unknown risks, many of which are beyond our control, could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking information in this press release. Such factors include, without limitation: risks relating to the Company’s ability to execute its business strategy and the benefits realizable therefrom, risks specifically related to the Company’s international operations, and risks relating to the market price of the Common Shares. Additional risk factors can also be found in the Company’s current MD&A and annual information form, both of which have been filed under the Company’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking information. The Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable law. Forward-looking statements contained in this news release are expressly qualified by this cautionary statement.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release or has in any way approved or disapproved of the contents of this press release.

Cision

View original content to download multimedia:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/namaste-technologies-provides-update-on-strategic-investments-300891570.html

SOURCE Namaste Technologies Inc.

View original content to download multimedia: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/July2019/26/c5614.html

Incite Capital Markets, Eric Negraeff / Darren Seed, Ph: 604.493.2004; For Meni Morim, Interim CEO, Email: ir@namastetechnologies.comCopyright CNW Group 2019

Published at Fri, 26 Jul 2019 12:22:26 +0000

CannTrust Fires CEO and Chair in Wake of Illegal Growing

CannTrust Fires CEO and Chair in Wake of Illegal Growing

VAUGHAN, ON, July 25, 2019 /CNW/ – PRESS RELEASE – CannTrust Holdings Inc. has announced immediate senior management changes and other interim actions based on the ongoing investigation being undertaken by a special committee of its board of directors.

The investigation into the company’s non-compliance with Health Canada regulations and ancillary matters uncovered new information that has resulted in a determination by the Board to terminate with cause CannTrust CEO Peter Aceto. 

In addition, the Board of Directors demanded the resignation of the company’s chair, Eric Paul, and he complied. 

Effective immediately, the Board has appointed Special Committee Chair Robert Marcovitch to the role of interim CEO and he will step down as a member of the Special Committee. A seasoned chief executive, Marcovitch was most recently the president and CEO of K2 Sports, an international developer, manufacturer, marketer and distributor of winter sports equipment. He was previously the chief executive officer at The Coleman Outdoor Company from 2011 until 2015, and prior to that, was chief executive officer and president of Ride, Inc. from 1994 to 1999, which prior to its acquisition by K2 was a large publicly traded company.

“Our first priority is to complete the remaining items of our investigation and bring the company’s operations into full regulatory compliance. Implementing the necessary changes is essential to the interests of our medical patients, customers, shareholders and employees,” said Marcovitch. “CannTrust has a number of strengths it can draw upon to reset and rebuild, including industry-leading research, innovation and intellectual property.”

Mark Dawber has assumed the role of Special Committee Chair.

Based on new information uncovered by the investigation, the company made a voluntary disclosure to Health Canada. The company will fully cooperate with the regulator in an open and transparent manner to resolve these matters fully and expeditiously.

The company is preparing to make additional operational changes in the days and weeks ahead, which will be announced in due course.

At this time, the impact of these matters on CannTrust’s financial results is unknown. Further updates will be provided as they become available.

Published at Fri, 26 Jul 2019 15:28:00 +0000