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Africa Has Huge Opportunity with Medical Marijuana

All countries in Africa have an opportunity before them to exploit the international demand for medical cannabis. Most are certainly capable of cultivating it on a large scale. They have the ideal climate for it, and currently, the global market for cannabis-based products sits at $3 billion. As legalization spreads to countries and U.S. states, experts predict the market will grow to a whopping $56 billion. African governments are typically conservative, however. There is a fear of encouraging the use of recreational drugs, and most nations are hesitant to jump into the business. Reluctance was never going to last, and now, Lesotho just made cultivation in Africa a reality by issuing the continent’s very first medical marijuana license. The government of Lesotho recently granted a local subsidiary of the South African company Verve Dynamics a license to grow, manufacture, supply, export, and distribute cannabis and cannabis-derived products from the tiny …

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Legalization Bill Drops One-Meter Height Restriction for Cannabis Plants

A Liberal clause in the marijuana legalization bill would have put Canadians before a prosecutor if their pot plants grew more than one meter tall. Fortunately, a Commons health committee dropped it on Tuesday. Critics had called the provision arbitrary, with a high potential to cause even more headaches for police and cultivators alike. For example, a report leaked from the police and corrections ministry in Ontario noted outright that “people could be criminalized for small amounts of overproduction” under the Liberals’ clause. Don Davies, New Democratic Party Member of Parliament, called the one-meter law “very difficult to enforce.” Anyone who has ever had a weed plant knows how fast it can grow out of control. “Cultivators might break the law simply by providing fertilizer and water and going away for a week’s vacation,” Davies explained. It is good that folks were paying attention, because the rule, as written originally, …

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Deadly Wildfires Devastate California’s Marijuana Industry

Northern California is alive with lethal wildfires, and the Emerald Triangle, which houses many of the state’s cannabis farms, is burning. The blaze is wreaking havoc in Mendocino County, destroying numerous farms just as California is gearing up to start selling recreational marijuana legally next year. There is no respite for pot business owners in the area, many of whom lost their crops. Secretary of the Mendocino Cannabis Industry Association, Nikki Lastreto, had this to say of the widespread devastation, “Nobody right now has insurance. They might have insurance on their house, but not on their crop.” Marijuana growers cannot insure their businesses, as federal law still prohibits pot. Because of this, it is illegal for financial institutions to provide any services to cannabusinesses. Derek Peterson, Chief Executive Officer at Terra Tech, a company that cultivates and sells cannabis in California, explained the crisis that pot farmers now find themselves …

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Medical Marijuana Patients Using Less Prescription Drugs

In Illinois, some medical marijuana patients say that the herb has empowered them to reduce their use of and reliance on prescription medications, with some eliminating them altogether. These are the findings of a new study conducted by researchers at Rush University and DePaul University, which was small and only involved 30 study participants. Because the study only collected data from people who volunteered to participate in a study on this topic, researchers concede that its findings may have a bias in support of cannabis. However, it remains the very first published, peer-reviewed research on medical pot patients in Illinois, and it provides direct feedback of anecdotal evidence to back up the findings of previous studies. The study’s lead author, Douglas Bruce, believes that cannabis contributes to lower rates of opioid drug use. He said, “One of the most compelling things to come out of this is that people are …

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Bank Risks Federal Trouble to Service Marijuana Businesses

Banking services are not something marijuana companies enjoy. In fact, they cannot even deposit money into a bank account, as financial institutions studiously avoid any business dealings with them. This is why the new strategy of First Green Bank is so revolutionary: Based in Orlando, the banking firm is aggressively marketing its services to Florida’s cannabusinesses. In an interview on Wednesday, Ken LaRoe, founder and chairperson of First Green Bank, said, “It is our understanding we are the only one doing it.” Because 71 percent of voters in Florida approved medical marijuana last year, weed shops have mushroomed across the state. According to LaRoe, six of the seven state-licensed marijuana companies in Florida bank with First Green Bank. Despite its name, First Green Bank does not reference ganja at all. Instead, the “Green” in its name credits the bank’s motivation to help environmentally sustainable projects, and since that is exactly …

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Federal Government Keeping an Eye on California Pot Activities

Just last year, California produced, at a bare minimum, 13.5 million pounds of ganja. It only consumed 2.5 million pounds, so it is growing five times what it is using. What happened to that extra marijuana in California? Experts say it is crossing state lines and ending up in states where marijuana remains illegal. As California readies itself for recreational sales, all that extra pot is becoming a problem. Palmdale Republican and Assemblyman Tom Lackey said, “If we want to avoid intervention from the federal government, we need to do everything we can to crack down on illegal activity and prevent cannabis from being exported out of state.” The difference in production and consumption rates is among recent findings from a study commissioned by the Department of Food and Agriculture. Under federal law, cannabis is still illegal. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is fighting hard for stricter enforcement, but because of …

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Rising Property Values Due To Marijuana Legalization, Study Claims

In Colorado, legalizing cannabis has earned the state almost $2 billion in marijuana sales, including general scholarship funds for students headed to college and around several hundred million dollars in tax revenues. It has also made property values more lucrative in and around the city of Denver, and certainly in areas that have close proximity to retail pot shops. Specifically, cannabis outlets are adding 8.4 percent more value onto homes closer to them than farther away. At least, that is what the Wisconsin School of Business at the University of Wisconsin-Madison had to say, which just last week released a research report conducted by assistant professor of real estate & urban land economics, Dr. Moussa Diop, as well as the University of Georgia’s James Conklin and California State University’s Herman Li. The team found no negative impacts on property or housing prices since marijuana went legal. In fact, they found …

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Ontario Considers Dropping Weed Prices to Government Standard

In an attempt to avoid fueling black market pot sales, the Ontario government wants to keep prices as low as possible across the board. The province’s biggest weed supplier now wants to set retail prices at $10 a gram, which could generate a tax windfall of well over $100 million annually. That $10 price is up for consideration as officials haggle prices for recreational pot when it becomes legal on July 1, 2018. That fee, estimated after New Brunswick signed deals last week with two suppliers, is likely to get approval. Finance Minister Charles Sousa told reporters on Wednesday, “It is certainly something we are giving consideration to. We are trying to work with all of our colleagues across Canada,” noting that provincial and federal finance ministers will determine pricing and tax rates in meetings later this year. “The intent is to have some uniformity with these prices across Canada,” …

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California Formally Requests Feds Reclassify Cannabis

Back in November last year, voters in California approved a ballot issue that made marijuana legal throughout the state. Now, its lawmakers are officially calling for federal reclassification of cannabis. Currently, the federal government categorizes weed as a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970. A joint resolution, approved on Thursday by the California of Assembly, reads: “The legislature urges the Congress of the United States to pass a law to reschedule marijuana or cannabis and its derivatives from a Schedule I drug to an alternative schedule, therefore allowing the legal research and development of marijuana or cannabis for medical use.” The resolution passed with a majority vote of 60 to 10. Schedule I is the most restrictive category in the Controlled Substances Act. It is for drugs that have a high potential for abuse and no medicinal value. Scientists have long been moaning that listing cannabis …

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California Lawmakers Stop Ban on Marijuana Advertising, For Now

Lawmakers in California have rejected a previous proposal, dubbed Senate Bill 162, to impose dramatic restrictions on marijuana advertising, in effect agreeing to shred a bill that would have prohibited the cannabis industry from advertising on all clothing and most other merchandise, putting pot businesses at a distinct disadvantage in a highly competitive market. The proposal, by State Senator and Santa Monica Democrat, Ben Allen, would have prevented any business with a state-issued marijuana license from advertising “through the use of branded merchandise, including, but not limited to, clothing, hats, or other merchandise with the name or logo of the product.” The only exemptions would have been for nonprofits and other noncommercial ads. Allen and others in favor of Senate Bill 162 argue that the bill would protect children from potentially harmful marketing practices. However, the measure has many critics, most of whom consider the bill overreaching and worry that …

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Against Predictions, Teen Marijuana Use Falls to 20-Year Low

There is no argument that teen drug use is a problem in the U.S. Whether it is due to the opioid addiction or the rise of heroin use, teenagers are not immune. The most important thing to remember is that marijuana is not classified as a dangerous drug. People feared that teenage drug use would be on the rise when states started to make marijuana legal. Luckily for the marijuana community, the exact opposite happened. Here is everything you need to know. History of Teen Marijuana Use The use of marijuana among teens hit an all-time high in the mid-80’s. These studies were done on teenagers and young adults between the ages of 18 and 25. People theorize that this rise was due to the fact that marijuana was currently seen as a dangerous gateway drug. This trend only grew in the 90’s. This was also around the time that …

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New Report Finally Debunks Pervasive Marijuana “Gateway Drug” Myth

For more than a century, prohibitionists have been spreading wild lies about the long-term health risks and short-term effects of consuming even one hit of the evil marijuana plant. This all in an attempt to curb weed use. Even today, lobbyists and lawmakers continue to believe the false gateway theory, but now evidence can finally lay to rest unfounded fears of homelessness and addiction. Researchers from the State University of New York, New Paltz published an extensive report recently. Appropriately titled “The Marijuana Gateway Phenomenon,” the recent paper highlights marijuana’s outlawed history and the treachery detractors used to force their racially motivated agenda of cannabis prohibition over the decades. Without a single real social or medical danger, famous personalities from Chris Christie to Nancy Reagan and every period between have instead spewed wild imaginings of violent, heavy drug use and fake consequences to instill fear and advance their goals. They …

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California Tribes Form Association to Protect Marijuana Business Rights

Governor Jerry Brown recently received a request from the newly formed California Native American Cannabis Association. The group wants to initiate government-to-government consultations with various tribes. It wants to ensure that marijuana regulations include specific language that respects the sovereignty of tribes and protects their right to self-regulation. Proposition 64 and its related laws, which govern California’s multibillion-dollar marijuana industry and go into effect on January 1, 2018, does not include any language currently that addresses Indian tribes and their sovereign rights. To ensure the new laws protect tribal sovereignty and build tribal support, C-NACA plans to hold a symposium from October 29 to November 1 at Morongo Casino Resort in Cabazon, California to discuss tribal issues. According to the President of Emerald Enterprise and Sapphire MJ Solutions, Blue Quisquis, who has extensive experience in gaming operations and now helps tribes enter the marijuana market, “Just like gaming, it is …

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California Bans Drone-Delivered Marijuana

The upcoming January 1 deadline has lawmakers in California working hard. They have until then to implement a system of regulation for legal marijuana sales. In its newly released licensing program, the Bureau of Cannabis Control includes some extremely interesting canna-business regulations. The legal cannabis market is about to create thousands of jobs, except perhaps for pot drivers. Only drivers with commercial licenses will find opportunity in California’s weed market. The new guidelines specifically mandate that “cannabis goods will be required to be transported in commercial vehicles or trailers.” The new laws do not stop there: Nobody will be able to deliver or transport weed via “aircraft, watercraft, rail, drones, human-powered vehicles, or unmanned vehicles.” To be clear, nobody is actually receiving pot via drone in California, at least not just yet. There has been plenty of debate about it, however. There is a strong likelihood that some have tested …

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Ban on Cannabis Advertising in California

Recently there has been a crack down on what type of business can advertise to the public. The latest community to take a hit was the marijuana community. This is another step back in the long line of digression that medical marijuana is facing. This begs the question, is it fair? Shouldn’t medical marijuana, even recreational marijuana, be given the same benefits as other recognized medicines? Here is everything you need to know about the recent ban on cannabis advertising in California. How Does Cannabis Advertising Work? Whether it is a billboard promoting marijuana delivery or an online ad for a local distributor, one thing is clear. Cannabis advertising is everywhere. It should be known that every state has different guidelines when it comes to how they advertise their marijuana business. In larger cities where marijuana is celebrated, you can’t turn a corner without seeing advertising. In Detroit, for instance, …

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Debt Deal Extends Protections of Rohrabacher-Blumenauer Agreement

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been harassing the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer agreement obsessively of late, and indeed, for most of his time in office. Back in May, he wrote Congress a letter requesting authorization for the Justice Department to override state marijuana laws and prosecute those operating state-legal businesses, in essence riding roughshod over state and individual rights. Formerly the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment, before Farr retired earlier this year, the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer clause protects medical marijuana programs in legal states from federal intrusion. It bars the Justice Department from using federal funds to target them in any way. Cannabis remains an illegal substance under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 and therefore prohibited by federal law. Fortunately, events of the past few weeks have left medical protections in place for another three months. Medical cannabis patients, cultivators, and dispensaries do not need to fear Jeff Sessions or any federal crackdowns for at least …

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California County Declares Marijuana Cultivation Emergency

Jon Lopey, Siskiyou County Sheriff, requested the Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors declares a local emergency over the illegal marijuana cultivation. He made the request on Tuesday afternoon, during an hours-long discussion at the Siskiyou County Courthouse in Yreka. The afternoon meeting attracted numerous people, who filled the supervisor’s chambers near to bursting. The goal of the meeting was for the board to make a decision about whether to proclaim the problem of illegal cultivators beyond the control of local authorities. Lopey was the first to speak. He stated the proclamation a necessary one due to a large number of illegal cultivation sites uncovered throughout the county. He brought up the risks these sites pose to life quality, environment, and public safety. Lopey backed up his concerns with several potential hazards, including incorrect waste storage, illegal pesticide use, lack of habitable living quarters, and other problems that may arise at …

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Marijuana Industry Takes Another Hit

With all of the advances in the medical marijuana industry, it is still surprising that it keeps getting setbacks. With a community that is ready to move forward, how is it that the government continues to push it back? Most recently the house committee blocked medical marijuana standards that would protect the community. What does this mean for you and your health? More importantly, can you expect big changes to the way you get your medicine? It started out with good intentions with Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, who is a long standing friend to the community. The California Republican Representative spent a full two days lobbying to her fellow congressmen to support MMJ. This bill would protect patients, growers and shop owners from the government. While the government and the community were working together, you cannot ignore the digression. This action would keep the DOJ from using funds to prosecute branches …

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House Rules Committee Cuts Marijuana Amendments from House Bill

The U.S. House Committee on Rules has removed several cannabis-related amendments from a federal appropriations bill. Included among them is the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment. The moves by the GOP-led committee late on Wednesday mean that a number of amendments protecting current and future cannabis laws by states will not get a vote on the House floor. Of those removed, the most notable are the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment. It bars the Justice Department from using federal funds to sabotage or interfere in any way with existing medical marijuana laws in legal states. Before Republican Sam Farr retired, the amendment was Rohrabacher-Farr. It has been in effect since 2014, when the House voted 219-189 in favor of it. Then in 2015, the House approved it again by a 242-186 majority vote. Omnibus spending legislation has been extending it ever since, but it is set to expire by this month’s end. Removal of medical marijuana …

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California Pot Farmers Allegedly Bribe Sheriff $1 Million

Two cannabis farmers from Northern California face bribery charges after offering to pay a sheriff $1 million to look the other way and ignore their pot-growing activities. Siblings Gaosheng Laitinen and Chi Meng Yang were on Wednesday charged in the U.S. Attorney’s Office with trying to bribe Jon Lopey, Siskiyou County Sheriff, to shield their operations from raids. Unsealed on Thursday, the complaint also accuses the pair of conspiring to sell their harvest in Missouri, which is currently undergoing efforts to legalize cannabis use in that state. According to Lopey, the drama started on May 17, when the sheriff and a department captain met with Yang in his Yreka office, approximately 300 miles north of San Francisco near the California border with Oregon. Lopey accused Yang of asking him to protect 10 commercial weed farms from raids in exchange for $1 million, donated to any cause or charity of Lopey’s …

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Legalization Slashing Pot Cannabis Prices

It will take several years of legal recreational use before the effects of marijuana legalization become apparent. Regulating a pot market will have diverse impacts on society as a whole, most extremely positive. One is becoming immediately clear: Weed has never been cheaper than it is currently. Prices are falling and show no signs of stopping. Steven Davenport, from the Pardee Rand Graduate School, has been analyzing retail cannabis prices ever since Washington State opened its legal recreational markets back in July 2014. Fantastically, prices have since been dropping in every single quarter. Approximately 18 months ago, Davenport reported a staggering 58.5 percent decrease in retail weed prices. However, he correctly predicted that the price collapse would continue further. Currently, weed sells for approximately $7.38 per taxed gram, which in just three years of a legal market, represents a 67 percent decline in sales prices. For consumers in the future, …

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Opponents Outnumber Supporters on the Cannabis Control Commission

The newly created Cannabis Control Commission, tasked with creating a regulated, functional environment for the legal marijuana market by January 1 next year, is now in the firm control of weed opponents. In fact, opponents of marijuana outnumber supporters by four to one now, which raises some concerns for many, particularly the vast majority of people who voted to make it legal. On Friday, Britte McBride joined the five-member Cannabis Control Commission, counsel to a State Senator, an Executive Officer of Public Safety and Security, and an experienced lawyer from the attorney general’s office. Appointed by Attorney General Maura Healey, who joins Treasurer Deborah Goldberg and Governor Charlie Baker in agreement, McBride is the final member of the five-person panel. A resident of Lynnfield, McBride joins Steve Hoffman, former partner of Bain and Company, and Jennifer Flanagan, former state senator, in last week’s CCC appointments. As with both Flanagan and Hoffman, …

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Vermont’s Supreme Court Considers Marijuana “Sniff Test”

The highest court in Vermont is now due to rule in a case involving whether simply smelling weed constitutes sufficient legal grounds to search drivers and seize their vehicles. Back in 2014, Vermont officers claimed that Greg Zullo was driving with a partially snow-obscured license plate. After pulling him over, a state trooper smelt cannabis and wanted to search his car, but Zullo refused. In response, the officer seized the vehicle and towed it away, leaving Zullo freezing in the dead of winter at least eight miles from home. The trooper, Lewis Hatch, already paid for the illegal stop with his job, and in a letter written to Hatch five months before firing him, Public Safety Commissioner Keith Flynn relied on Hatch’s long history of conducting illegal searches to say the following to him: “You have again placed your personal pursuit of drug detection above all else, including your duty …

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Pot Money Encouraging Public Banking in California

Canna-businesses have a unique problem: They are making huge profits in an emerging market unmatched in financial growth, yet they cannot secure any of it with the bank. The U.S. banking system falls under the Federal Reserve, which is solely responsible for national regulating, and weed remains federally illegal, categorized as a Schedule 1 drug with no medical value and a high potential for abuse. Despite this incorrect classification of marijuana by the Drug Enforcement Agency, people are unable to deposit cannabis-related monies into any national banks. All weed deposits are subject to federal seizure, which is why both banks and marijuana businesses are dubious of transacting with each other. Business owners mostly transact in cash and stash their profits under floorboards and in pillow cases. Cash-only sales put marijuana businesses at high risk of crime. They are targets for criminals who rob and steal from them. Now, the State …

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New Cannabis Control Commissioner Staunch Opponent of Legal Pot

This week, Governor Charlie Baker appointed State Senator Jennifer Flanagan, a Leominster Democrat, to become one of the five-member Cannabis Control Commission. She is set to resign her current seat by month end to take on the responsibility of licensing retail marijuana businesses and regulating the growing recreational weed industry. Interestingly, Ms. Flanagan opposed the ballot question in 2016, which made recreational use legal for adults, and has been focusing primarily on substance abuse and mental health issues during her time in Legislature. Her new duties commence on September 1 this year. The Senate will now hold a special election to fill her seat, which will be its third since beginning its session in January. Ms. Flanagan is the second senator this year to leave Legislature for a new job. Before election to the Senate in 2008 as representative of the Middlesex and Worcester District, which includes Gardner, Fitchburg, Leominster, …

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Australian States Cannot Agree on Medical Marijuana

Last week, the New South Wales state government denied terminally ill and chronic pain sufferers access to medical cannabis. It blocked a law attempting to decriminalize marijuana possession for people suffering severe medical ailments. The legislation would have enabled legitimate patients to possess up to 15 grams of cannabis for medical purposes. Introduced by the Labor Party and blocked by the Liberal Legislative Assembly, the proposed bill was actually the result of recommendations from a bipartisan parliamentary inquiry tasked with investigating the use of marijuana for medical patients. Despite this, and despite no bipartisanship presence at the time of voting, the LLA voted against it. According to a statement made by NSW Labor Leader, Luke Foley, “By refusing to pass this legislation, the NSW Government has put up an unnecessary hurdle for sufferers of terminal and chronic illnesses. It is deeply disappointing that the Government has denied legislation that will …

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Illegal Cannabis Grows Face Crackdown in Sacramento

According to Sacramento Fire Deputy Chief, Niko King, illegal marijuana home grows are “truly a public nuisance.” In the last year, the area has battled 11 different fires, and illegal home grows were responsible for half of them. King explained, “They tap into the electrical systems, they tap into the ventilation systems. There are chemicals that are not usually found in a home.” Unlicensed growers are transforming their homes into illegal  cannabis grows in Sacramento facilities, endangering the public by creating fire hazards for neighbors and first responders. According to King, these unlawful grows are “becoming a full-time job for a couple of firefighters.” A Sacramento city report claims that nearly 1,000 illegal home grows are operating within the area right now. The city has plans to crackdown on these illegal home grows. According to its Cannabis Chief, Joe Devlin, “We are going to be taking steps to aggressively root …

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Los Angeles Cannabis Expo Boycott Sparked By Trump Comments

On Thursday morning, a single Facebook post started a boycott of the Cannabis World Congress & Business Expo, scheduled for mid-September in Los Angeles this year. By Friday afternoon, several prominent members of the marijuana industry had noticed it. The boycott is yet more fallout from President Trump’s defense of neo-Nazis and white supremacists at the Charlottesville incident. The Minority Cannabis Business Association, or MCBA, announced via Facebook on Thursday its withdrawal from the expo to protest Roger Stone’s presence as a keynote speaker. A self-confessed political prankster, Stone is a longtime advisor and mentor to President Trump, despite some nasty racial incidents in his history. He is also extremely vocal about his support for marijuana legalization. The MCBAs Thursday Facebook announcement had this to say, “As a result of the Cannabis World Congress choosing this guy as their keynote speaker, MCBA has decided to withdraw from attendance and speaking …

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New Cannabis Department Head Appointed By L.A. City Council

Last week Wednesday, the Los Angeles City Council elected someone to supervise its new Department of Cannabis Regulation. Backing Mayor Eric Garcett’s choice for the job, the vote came as state officials are creating a legal regulatory environment for the recreational weed market. Former coordinator for California’s Drug Policy Alliance will head the new division. Cat Packer will have a five-member Cannabis Commission to help and advise her on marijuana policy. She won the vote 13-0, with some council members, Curren Price and Paul Koretz, absent from the meeting. Packer, 26, told the council that her interest in weed policy began when she realized the disproportionate affects that the “war on drugs” and prohibition had on communities of color. The mission of the department is to protect all children, neighborhoods, marijuana businesses, and natural environments within the city’s jurisdiction. According to Packer, “It is extremely important that as this industry …

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Attorney General Sessions Losing Federal Marijuana Enforcement Plea

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been making every attempt to enforce federal marijuana policy on the entire nation, even in states where it is legal. Since May, he has been asking Congress to allow the Justice Department to override the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment, which specifically protects legal states from federal laws. Now, it is even more unlikely that Sessions will get his way. Despite his opposing views of cannabis legalization, a Justice Department subcommittee appears to ignore his pleas in its recommendations. Tasked with studying the issue specifically, the Department of Justice Task Force on Crime Reduction and Public Safety “has come up with no new policy recommendations to advance the attorney general’s aggressively anti-marijuana views.” This, despite federal funding specifically to link marijuana to rising violent crime rates, may just be the final blow to Sessions’ campaign. According to the Associated Press, which has copies of the as-yet-unpublished recommendations, …

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Will Duterte Legalize Medical Marijuana in the Philippines?

Last year, just a few days after winning the election, President Rodrigo Duterte discussed his stance on medical marijuana in several press interviews. He claimed to be personally supportive of legalizing cannabis for medical reasons. When asked by a TV reporter, Duterte had this to say, “Medicinal marijuana, yes, because it is really an ingredient of modern medicine.” He continued, “There are medicines being developed, or are now in the market, that contain marijuana for medical purposes.” However, Mr. Duterte also said that he would demand strict regulatory processes to ensure that only those who really need cannabis would have access to it. He is certainly not in favor of legalizing it recreationally. Two years ago, 24 percent of the House of Representatives, or 70 congressional representatives, endorsed the original bill legalizing medical marijuana. It underwent revision and is now the Philippine Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act, or simply House Bill …

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Israel to Begin Exporting Medical Cannabis in a Big Way

On Sunday, an interministerial committee consisting of Israel’s Health and Finance Ministries announced its approval of exporting medical marijuana. This will generate an estimated NIS 1 billion to NIS 4 billion extra every year for the state. Now, any operation that meets the necessary requirements may get a license to cultivate, produce, distribute, or store medical cannabis. Globally, the average price for weed is approximately $10 per gram. Medical marijuana prices are steadily growing, however. In 2000, the world was producing roughly 1.3 tons for the cannabis exporting industry, but by 2014, this production grew to a whopping 57.3 tons. The State of Israel sees the opportunities this growth provides, and it is taking decisive steps to get in on the export market. According to Israel’s Finance Minister, Moshe Kahlon, “The export of medical cannabis is an industry with significant economic potential for the State of Israel. It will strengthen …

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Legal Marijuana States Attempt to Stop Illegal Smuggling

Long before cannabis became legal in Oregon, people were growing weed extensively throughout its thick, wet forests. The climate was simply ideal, and growers were sending it across state lines for bigger profits. Nowadays, smuggling continues, only this time, it is legally grown cannabis leaving the state. All of this trafficking is putting major strain on America’s multibillion-dollar cannabis industry. In response to this risk, weed-friendly states are doing everything they possibly can to stop this diversion, despite the fact that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is pressing for more enforcement of federal marijuana laws. Seed-to-sale tracking systems are helping states monitor their legal market, and they see this software as the best way to defeat illegal cannabis smuggling. The goal of seed-to-sale technology is to track legal marijuana from the field or greenhouse where it grows, to the shop that sells it, and finally to the person who consumes …

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The Great Debate On Marijuana And Your Health

For decades marijuana has been viewed as a dangerous drug and the gateway to destruction. Recently even the biggest of skeptics are starting to turn around on this topic. This could be because of the studies that show that marijuana can be beneficial to your health. This wasn’t an accident either. Outspoken members of the cannabis community have worked tirelessly to change people’s minds. But, will new studies start to erase all of the progress they have made? Just this week information came out claiming that marijuana can have a surprisingly negative effect on your health. While this study is still new, the claims are shocking to say the least. The claim is that people who use marijuana are more likely to have heart problems like hypertension later in life. This study was done by The European Society of Cardiology. According to SAGE Journals people who use marijuana regularly are …

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Concerned Residents Lash Out At Cannabis Cultivation in Santa Barbara

Despite a few rolled eyes, sneaky scoffs, and knowing stares, the atmosphere at Santa Barbara County’s environmental scoping meeting on July 27 was mostly calm and collected, if not quite submissive. The meeting’s topic attracted many vehemently concerned about it, all voicing their fears about cannabis cultivation in the area. Held in the Santa Maria Betteravia Government Center with about 40 people in attendance, at least 10 members of the community spoke out about the water needs of grow operations, the smell of marijuana fields, the traffic that grow farms would attract, and the potential noise it will bring to the county’s much-cherished peace and quiet. A few cultivators joined the fray in an attempt to alleviate apprehensions the public may have about cannabis cultivation in Santa Barbara. Walter Taylor, a county resident, had this to say, “I want to point out that cannabis is a crop and it is …

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Tensions Continue to Broil Over Marijuana Legalization

Earlier this month, U.S. Senator Corey Booker, D-N.J., introduced a bill to get marijuana legalized at the federal level. Called the ‘Marijuana Justice Act,’ this legislation would make cannabis legal across the country and protect the rights of states to make their own laws to regulate their industries. However, his bill faces one rather large obstacle. It has practically zero chance of becoming law in Washington’s current political climate, and media outlets, political analysts, and every professional with a chance to talk about it are not shy to acknowledge this as fact. According to Politico, it has “virtually no chance.” Even the most optimistic advocates of legalization agree. Rolling Stone said it “faces an uphill battle,” one impossible to win. The GOP is Boss Attempting to get cannabis legalized federally in today’s political environment appears an insurmountable hurdle. The GOP is actively suppressing all legislative and congressional actions in favor …

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Feds Urged To Declassify Marijuana by State Lawmakers’ Group

Clearly, lawmakers throughout the United States are becoming increasingly supportive of legalizing marijuana. Recently, the National Conference of State Legislatures petitioned the federal government to declassify cannabis and remove it from the Controlled Substances Act. It also wants states to have full authority to set their own marijuana policies, without any interference from the federal government. In a resolution adopted on Monday, the group argues that not only would this respect the rights of individual states, it would also enable marijuana businesses to access banking services and improve public safety in the process. Because banks are federally insured, they can face penalties for working with anyone in the cannabis industry. This forces companies to carry cash and risk their own safety. According to Karen O’Keefe from the Marijuana Policy Project, “State legislators and the vast majority of voters agree that marijuana policy should be left to the states.” In this …

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California Ghost Town to Become Hub for Marijuana Tourism

Nipton, a small ghost town edging the Mojave Desert in California, has a vivid history. In 1905, a trail of cattle ranchers passed through with their wagons. Not long after, the California Gold Rush brought miners in droves to the tiny desert town. Today, only six inhabitants populate this deserted place. That is about to change: The “Green Rush” is about to turn it into a popular marijuana town. Recently, American Green bought the little town for nearly $5 million. The cannabis-focused consultancy and technology company has plans to reinvent the town and make it a hotspot for marijuana tourism. It envisions a ganja paradise, a place where visitors can tour a cannabis farm, buy from the cannabis dispensaries, swim in the natural springs, and puff away freely at a weed-friendly bed and breakfast. One of the consultants on American Green’s Nipton development project, Stephen Shearin, discussed the company’s aims …

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Marijuana Growers in California Face Major Obstacles

Over the last few years, California has seen unstoppable growth in its legal cannabis industry. Sufficient sales data exists to prove this claim. According to ArcView, a marijuana research firm, legal pot sales in North America grew by 34 percent to $6.9 billion in 2016. By 2021, this would have grown by an annual rate of around 26 percent. Within five years, the North American market could be worth $22 billion. There is likely to be a lot more expansion of the state’s marijuana market. This growth in sales, coupled with a rapidly changing perception of marijuana among consumers, has been the catalyst driving investment in cannabis stocks over the last year. According to surveys by CBS News and Gallup, the number of people wanting marijuana legalized at the national level is at an all-time high. Today, medical marijuana is legal in 29 states. Another eight states have or are …

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Weddings Now Offer Open Cannabis Bar

Is there nothing that millennials can’t come up with? They have revolutionized the way that people buy houses and start companies. So, is it really a surprise that they are now changing the wedding game? While not every idea they have is a winner, this one is sure to elevate any nuptial. Cannabis bars are popping up all over states where the recreational use of marijuana has been legalized. Much like typical bars, cannabis bars can be either cash or open. An open cannabis bar ensures that your guests can kick back and enjoy the day. What is a cannabis bar? Instead of an alcohol bar, cannabis bars offer a wide range of services depending on what distributer you work with. These bars offer everything from smoke, concentrates, and edibles. Imagine having a wedding cake made laced with cannabis. The best part about these innovative cannabis bars is that they …

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Marijuana Justice Act Would Destroy Federal Marijuana Policy

A new congressional bill presented this week attempts to force government and marijuana to get along better. If both are on the same side, it could end a decades-long federal ban on the cannabis plant. The Marijuana Justice Act of 2017, introduced by New Jersey Senator, Cory Booker, tries to end prohibition at the federal level and address the impact that such a ban has on both government and citizens today. In a Facebook Live announcement, Booker advised the federal government to “get out of the illegal marijuana business. He hopes it will permit law enforcement to prioritize their spending and time on matters more serious than weed. The country is moving toward full marijuana legalization. Eight states and the District of Columbia now permit recreational weed use, without increasing violent crime rates. Booker has a valid point. These states are all enjoying increased revenues. Their police forces are freer …

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NFL To Consider Medical Marijuana for Pain Management in Players

The National Football League is offering to work in tandem with the NFL Players Association to analyze the possible use of medical marijuana as a tool to manage pain among players. This is according to insiders familiar with the scenario. To date, this is the clearest indication that the league might be willing to cooperate with the union toward future cannabis use, which the sport currently bans. However, the NFLPA is busy with its own study. According to those in the know, it has yet to provide the NFL with a response to its suggestion to cooperate on cannabis-related research. As the NFL’s executive vice president of communications, Joe Lockhart, says, “We look forward to working with the Players Association on all issues involving the health and safety of our players.” According to the insider, the NFL wrote the union a letter, asking if, due to the NFLPA’s public comments …

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Marijuana Legalization Fueling Illegal Marijuana Market in Other States

In the past, people could only get weed in one of two ways: They had to either grow it illegally at home or purchase it on the black market. It is very different today. At least 205 million people now have access to legal marijuana, whether medicinally or recreationally, if they live in a state that allows it. Everyone else still relies on the illegal marijuana market, and smugglers are taking full advantage of it. Illegal traders are cultivating and shipping huge quantities of illegal weed throughout the United States. They are sending it via email, driving it across state lines, and some are even using skydiving planes to fly it. To hide the smell from police officers, they are vacuum sealing it and hiding it in car trunks and truck beds. On-duty officers patrolling the interstates are unable to stop this illicit trade. Most grow it in states where …

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Legal Marijuana Market in California Could Generate $5B

In 2016 Californian voters ratified a state ballet in favor of the legalization of recreational marijuana, in a ballet known as proposition 64. The ballot passed 56% to 64%. By January 2018, Californian businesses will most likely have business licenses for the sale of recreational marijuana. What this means is that by this time local counties must have all the relevant procedures ready in order to comply with state and federal law in relation to the regulation of marijuana. The legalization of marijuana is going to be excellent for the growth of the economy and new industries are springing up all the time. It is not known exactly how much money will be generated from the legal marijuana market, as it is too early to tell. All predictions at the present time are vague at best, as there is no historical data or trends to go on. Marijuana to generate …

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions Faces Lawsuit for Marijuana Laws

Life is tough for Attorney General Jeff Sessions these days. His boss, President Donald Trump, recently threw him under the bus during a New York Times interview, saying if he had known that Sessions would remove himself from the Russia investigation, he would never have made him Attorney General. On Monday, Trump did it again, calling Sessions “beleaguered” and wondering why he was not investigating alleged ties between Russia and Hillary Clinton. Now, Attorney General Jeff Sessions faces an even tougher opponent in Marvin Washington. The 285-pound, 1.98-meter former New York Jets defensive end is one of five plaintiffs suing Sessions, the Drug Enforcement Agency, and the Department of Justice in a groundbreaking federal lawsuit. Legal experts predict that the case will attract widespread attention and set a new legal precedent. Federal Cannabis Policy The Manhattan lawsuit attacks the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, which categorized drugs into different schedules …

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Synthetic Marijuana Overdoses on the Rise

Marijuana has been used for decades as a safe alternative to certain painkillers and medications. So, how is it possible that people are now overdosing from this seemingly “safe” drug? The truth is that people are not overdosing from marijuana but instead from an imposter. Synthetic marijuana sales are on the rise, but not from the marijuana industry. So before you throw out your stash, know how to spot a fake. The dangers when it comes to synthetic marijuana are on the rise. Even CNN is reporting an alarming number of overdoses. According to www.cnn.com, over one hundred people have overdosed in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. This has led the community to issue a serious state of emergency. Overdoses and drug problems are nothing new for this country either. Over the past decade, Lancaster County has had to deal with the overwhelming heroin epidemic. Since heroin is not as readily available …

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Huge Demand as Nevada Legalizes Recreational Marijuana

Nevada just legalized recreational pot. The first day of legal marijuana sales saw fireworks, long queues, and even a wedding to celebrate the momentous occasion. This is now the eight state allowing dispensaries to sell weed recreationally, and initial sales show that the people of Nevada have huge demands and expectations for the marijuana industry. Recreational Marijuana in Nevada Fireworks rang in the new law, lighting the night sky green. People waited in queues for hours to buy legal weed legal for the first time, and there were hundreds of them. The occasion was festive and highly anticipated. People emptied ATMs across the state in readiness for cash only sales, and they crammed into showrooms to get a glimpse of what the future industry will look like. Even State Senator Tick Segerblom got in on the action. In fact, he was the very first person to purchase legal marijuana in …

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Is the Marijuana Market Having a Supply and Demand Problem?

With so many states joining the marijuana revolution, there is one problem that no one expected. Some states are surprised by the overwhelming demand for marijuana. While marijuana is becoming a business titan, how is it that no expected so many patient requests? More importantly, what happens when the demand becomes too big for suppliers to keep up with? In most states where medical marijuana is legalized, they are only currently allowing the use of medical marijuana. This was done for a variety of different reasons. The biggest reason is that the local government wanted to have control with the best profit. In order to obtain medical marijuana, you have to first become a MMJ card holder. This means that not only do patients have to jump through hoops; they have to pay a fee. Depending on the state, this fee has been anything from $50 to upwards of $100. …

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Sessions Lobbying Congress to Undo Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment

State medical marijuana laws are under attack. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, long a known opponent of legalization, is petitioning Congress to scrap the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment, which promises legal states protection from federal interference and harassment. In a recently publicized letter from May, Sessions plans to override federal medical marijuana protections given to states. The Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment States have the right to create their own cannabis laws, even if they contradict federal ones. According to Congress itself, the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment prohibits the federal government from using federal funds to stalk anyone using, distributing, possessing, or cultivating medical marijuana in states where it is legal for them to do so. The Justice Department may not undermine the state’s rights. In his letter, written in May and released publically on June 12, Sessions argues that Rohrabacher-Farr inhibits the ability and the authority of the Justice Department to enforce the Controlled Substances Act, under …

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Effects of Federal Pressure on Santa Monica’s Cannabis Industry

On November 8, 2016, all of California was celebrating the official ballot votes approving Proposition 64. For those in Santa Monica, cannabis for recreational purposes was legal, and everywhere else in the state, too. Anyone over the age of 21 could use weed, carry it on their person, and even grow some at home. However, everyone is now anxious with President Trump being in office. Just ten days after his election, Trump instated Jeff Sessions as head of the Department of Justice. Sessions is an Alabama senator with strong opposing views on marijuana. Trepidation is now pervasive in L.A.’s cannabis industry, and stakeholders are extremely insecure about what will happen next or how to proceed. After all, cannabis is still illegal under federal law. California’s marijuana industry feels under threat.  Santa Monica cannabis industry do not feel that they have sufficient legal protection. Although Proposition 64 legalizes recreational weed, cannabis …

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Legalization of Medical Marijuana Slashes Opioid Addiction

In states where medical marijuana is legal, there are fewer cases of opioid addiction. The numbers continue to decline as legalization continues. According to the American Journal of Public Health, medical marijuana is the ideal substitute for addictive and deadly pharmaceuticals. In fact, this is widespread knowledge in the medical industry and has been for centuries already. The Problem with Opioids in California There are many, many people addicted to opioids in California. The problem is not exclusive to the state, but common across the United States. Doctors prescribe opioids for every ache and pain, and these drugs are highly addictive. OxyContin and other prescription painkillers fill many a medicine cabinet, and people are taking them to provide pain relief, whether severe, chronic or mild. Although opioids do an excellent job of relieving pain, they are dangerous. Today’s ache-free moment is tomorrow’s absolute misery. These drugs are so addictive that …

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California Gov. Jerry Brown Rejects Anti-Competitive Marijuana Rules

If you are anticipating the outcome of Proposition 64 on the state’s marijuana rules, then we have news for you: Gov. Jerry Brown wants to resolve the legal conflict between recreational and medical cannabis in California, and he wants it sorted out before year-end. His office released a 92-page document recently, which suggests regulatory fixes for both industry segments. In this document, the governor lays out several proposals on everything, from how to distribute cannabis across the state to how many marijuana licenses businesses may have. Included in Brown’s budget for the year, these proposals must first pass through Legislature before Brown’s final approval can make them law. What does this mean for recreational and medical cannabis in California? Ordinary citizens are breathing a collective sigh of relief and enjoying an early celebration. If Brown’s proposals become effective, people will have the ability to trade competitively. The governor is siding …

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Your Questions answered, Proposition 64 and new Marijuana laws

Proposition 64 passed during the 2016 elections. There are those who voted for it while others were opposed to it. Obviously, some of the opponents in this highly-contested bill didn’t go much deeper into the details of what Prop 64 entails.  It affects all Californians: whether you voted for it or not. Everyone is subject to its provisions because it affects all of us in one way or the other. Basically, Proposition 64 is the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA). In this context, an adult is defined as anyone aged 21 years and above. Before anyone stands out to say anything about it, it would be important to get answers to any concerns that they might be having. The main purpose for its establishment was to seek the legalization of recreational marijuana. Was it all about that? No, the proposition also redefined some of the regulations concerning medical marijuana …

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President Obama will Soften Federal Stands on the Marijuana by Reclassifying it

President Obama may sign an executive order before leaving office that will change marijuana’s listing under federal laws. During his reign, President Nixon signed an order in 1970 that listed Marijuana as a Schedule 1 Drug. Drugs in this class have no accepted medical use and are considered to have a high potential for abuse. The federal laws have remained the same since President Nixon signed the order but state governments have had the liberty to create their own laws on marijuana use. Nearly half of the states in the US have legalized marijuana for medical use with others allowing it for recreational purposes. Recent marijuana reforms happened during the November 2016 election. Most of the states allow qualified patients to buy marijuana from registered and licensed dispensaries for medical use. Marijuana is currently listed as a Schedule 1 Drug among other substances such as heroin, peyote, ecstasy, methaqualone, and …

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How Hemp Innovates as a Breakthrough Medicine

In what is being hailed as a breakthrough, Brazil has recently approved the use of hemp CBD products.  This product is high in cannabidiol or CBD, which is believed to have great health benefits for its users.  The product that has been approved by the Brazilian government is intended to be used to fight cancer.  The CBD product is called Real Scientific Hemp Oil and can also be used in Brazil by those who suffer from other conditions including epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease and even chronic pain.  Now that it has been approved for the use of treating cancer, this just adds to the many healing benefits of the cannabis drug. So far, the US does not have an approved alternative medicine to treat cancer.  The Hemp based Oil therefore puts Brazil in a better position than the US when it comes to offering its citizens a safe and affordable treatment …

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Which Ailments Can Marijuana Most Effectively Treat?

The acceptance of medical marijuana as treatment has grown to the extent that many are already seeking medical treatment via cannabis. A multitude of services, such as cannabis clinics, dispensaries, and cannabis and medical marijuana delivery, have cropped up in order to supply an increasing number of patients. Despite these advances, medical marijuana has not yet received the extensive clinical study that could provide strong validation of its therapeutic and medicinal effects. However, a number of smaller-scale studies do exist that have documented its effectiveness in treating certain illnesses. Below Are Ten Ailments And The Effectiveness Of Medical Marijuana On Their Treatment: AIDS/HIV  Medical marijuana may help with the neuropathic pain which sufferers of AIDS/HIV experience. The findings are similar to those of oral drugs used for chronic neuropathic pain derived from HIV-associated sensory neuropathy. Cannabis has also shown promising effects in treating the symptoms of wasting syndrome, which include …

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Does Cannabis Actually Help Reduce the Size of Tumors?

With the popularity of marijuana clinicsand marijuana dispensaries on the rise, the medicinal properties of cannabis are by now better known and better received by the public and medical professionals alike. Marijuana treatment is most commonly applied to ailments such as glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, and to combat the side effects of chemotherapy. However, recent research has sought to conclude the medicinal benefits of cannabis for treating cancer, more specifically, the reduction of cancerous tumors. The effect of medical Cannabis on brain tumors A large portion of what is known about medical marijuana’s ability to combat cancerous cells derives from research on glioblastomamultiformeor “GBM” (a high grade glioma) and glioma tumor cells, which make up 80% of all of brain tumors. Scientists believe that due to brain cells having the highest concentration of cannabinoid (the active compounds in marijuana) receptors, brain tumors, which contain many of these receptors, may respond well …

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Marijuana, Its Various Names and Options for Purchase and Growth

Marijuana has, and still is, becoming increasingly popular, not just with millennials, but with those in all age groups from Generation X, to baby boomers, and even in some cases those from the Silent Generation. With that said, general interest in the various products offered to consumers has grown right along with this increase in popularity, and interest in the different strains and their names has reached an all time high. Its no wonder people are interested in all the various strains however, because some of them have down right interesting names. Some of the most famous strain names include: Purple Haze, White Widow, Pineapple Express, Kush, Jack Herer, Sour Diesel, Grape Ape, Durban Poison and more. How these strains got their names however, is another question all together, though one with a relatively simple answer. 3 Factors to Choose From  Most cannabis strains obtain their name based off of …

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What You Need to Know about Marijuana Delivery Services

A lot of people do not know this, but yes, it is very possible for you to have your marijuana delivered to your door, just as you would if you ordered a pizza. For people who do not want to leave their homes, or for those who would require marijuana but not need it right away, marijuana delivery services are the perfect solution. It is legal and it is a great alternative to acquiring marijuana, without visiting a dispensary. There are a lot of questionable people out here that claim that they operate a marijuana delivery service, but one needs to exercise caution when it comes to such things. If you live in an area where marijuana is legal but for medicinal and recreational purposes, then it will be easier to find a delivery service. Next to living in a state where the operation is legal, you need to be …

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Surprising Health Benefits of Using Medical Marijuana

So far 41 of the 50 states in the United States have legislations that permit medical marijuana in some form. These states have done an impressive job in finally seeing the medical value of marijuana. Whether patients suffer from epilepsy, a chronic illness or even PTSD, these laws have allowed patients more options when it comes to treatment. What Makes Marijuana Medicinal? Apart from the calming sensation most users feel the actual science behind marijuana is just in the beginning stages of being known. While marijuana has over a hundred chemicals, it’s tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which creates the infamous marijuana’s “high.” The THC is used to also treat vomiting and nausea. A key role when used by those undergoing chemotherapy or to help with appetite for those with AIDS. Another marijuana compound known to have medical applications is cannabidiol (CBD). This is being researched to treat serioys epilepsy and pain.The medicinal …

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Medical Marijuana Santa Barbara

In the Santa Barbara area, medical marijuana is not as accessible as it is in other parts of the state of California. There seems to be different zoning laws in different cities that regulate the construction of dispensaries, as well as the legal distribution of marijuana products. In Santa Barbara, as of 2015, only one dispensary has been approved in the outskirts of the city; with about two more applications for marijuana dispensaries pending. Even at that, the cultivation of marijuana, as well as the membership of people who consume the products and the financial records are all maintained and inspected by the City Staff. In January alone, the Santa Barbara City Council voted to ban the commercial growth of medicinal marijuana. While people are allowed to grow up to 100 square feet of medical marijuana for personal use; qualified patients can also buy medical marijuana from the three dispensaries …

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