December 9, 2017
DID YOU KNOW? You can list  your conferences, festivals and parties  for FREE on the site. 
Check out those  upcoming events here .

Would you appreciate a WeedWeek regional supplement with more news from  California  and/or  Canada ? Or more news about the  opioid crisis ? Sign up at the appropriate link.

If you consider WeedWeek a valuable resource, consider supporting us with a  monthly contribution on Patreon .

Swag and discounts start at  $2 a month .

For $25 a month  you get five (5!) WeedWeek stickers, discounts to all future WeedWeek events, a postcard from Los Angeles, cannabis capital of the world and you get to join a monthly Google hangout with me and other WeedWeek supporters to discuss the latest news...

Brandbuilding opportunities to appear in the newsletter with your links and social media handles start at only  $50 a month .

WeedWeek has introduced a new feature called  WeedWeek Forum , the cannabis world's Op-Ed page. Many of you are are eager to share your thoughts and expertise. Here's your chance to publish on the WeedWeek site.

WeedWeek publishes 400-600 word essays, arguments, observations and fact-based criticisms by outside contributors.  We do not accept payment for publishing work.

Want to contribute? Check out the  writer's guidelines here .

WeedWeek's Holiday Gift Guide is up featuring special offers on some great gear.

Contact Adrienne Nascimento to add an offer for your product.


1. President Trump's Federal Communications Commission (FCC) wants to end net neutrality. As John Oliver put it, net neutrality prevents internet providers like Comcast, AT&T and Verizon from engaging " in any sort of fuckery that limits or manipulates the choices you make online. "

To learn more about preserving net neutrality, go to .
So much news.
Congress extended the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer Amendment , which blocks the Justice Department from prosecuting state-legal MED businesses for two weeks, as part of the budget deal. It’s not clear whether the amendment will be re-extended.
Repeal of industry-despised tax rule 280E didn’t make it into the Senate version of the Republican tax bill, but Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner (R) hopes to get it into the final version . A Colorado dispensary is suing the IRS claiming 280E taxed them twice.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions (R), held a closed-door meeting with legalization opponents yesterday. Attendees included Ronald Reagan Attorney General Edwin Meese III; Kevin Sabet, head of Smart Approaches to Marijuana; Harvard Medical School professor and member of President Trump’s drug and opioid abuse commission Bertha Madras; Robert DuPont, former head of the National Institute on Drug Abuse; and David Evans, executive director of the Drug Free Schools Coalition. It’s not clear if Sessions has met with legalization supporters as attorney general.

Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously to regulate California’s largest REC market . The new rules promise extra support to entrepreneurs with past drug convictions and those in areas deemed most affected by the war on drugs. But there are tight zoning restrictions as well. For more see here and here .

Activists say the lack of size caps on commercial grows in California will make it harder for small farmers to survive. For more see here .

After falling short last session, Vermont appears set to legalize REC legislatively in early 2018. Massachusetts is considering social use .

San Francisco voted in favor of a proposed Sunset District dispensary , which has faced opposition from older Chinese residents.

Seattle Weekly looks back at five years of legal REC in Washington.

Maryland named a health system CEO as head of the state’s MED regulator. The previous director, a former state trooper, was the second to resign in two years.

In Michigan, proposed MED rules leaked to the press .

The U.S. Army is issuing more waivers for recruits who have used cannabis in the past.

Anne McLellan, who led Canada’s federal task force on legalization, predicts REC will pass the conservative Senate in time to meet the government’s July implementation deadline.

Canada’s First Nations demand control of the cannabis industry in their territories.

German activists collected 50,000 signatures , forcing the Bundestag to debate REC legalization. An Irish lawmaker said legal REC is inevitable within a few years. For more see here .

The U.K. has a cocaine glut .

A dispensary owner won a city council seat in a conservative Washington town.

Washington cannabis activist JoAnna McKee, died at 74 . McKee, opened Seattle’s first dispensary in 1993, five years before Washington legalized MED. McKee was a fixture at cannabis hearings in the state legislature, known for wearing colorful eye patches.
The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in Christie vs. NCAA , a case assessing whether New Jersey can partially legalize sports gambling. Christie has implications for whether the federal government can block state efforts to legalize cannabis. The judges appeared sympathetic to the case for federalism (states rights).
Oregon-licensed testing company OG Analytical and its co-owners are mutually severing ties after Eugene Antifa alleged the co-owners have ties to neo-Nazi groups . CEO Bethany Sherman denied being a neo-Nazi and said her only “crime is a thought crime.” At least one grower, HiFi Farms, ended its relationship with the lab.

A pesticide-related lawsuit against Canadian MED producer Organigram, is expanding its scope to claim the company’s product made people ill. The company said it has not received any evidence of sickened patients.

REC demand in Canada could be 40% higher than expected , according to Colorado research firm Marijuana Policy Group.

North American legal cannabis sales will reach about $10 billion this year .

After October wildfires destroyed dozens of NorCal cannabis farms, wildfires in southern California threatened to taint cannabis grown in Los Angeles and San Luis Obispo counties.

Cannabis biotech firm, GW Pharmaceuticals plans to raise more than $250M from American depository shares.

Canna Law Blog discusses how to protect a business from bad-actor employees.

Oregon regulators launched a “Go legal!” campaign to promote the state’s industry.

Bloomberg discusses the partnerships cannabis brands use to expand across state lines.

Reuters finds top business talent going into cannabis. Lawyers are moving in as well , despite risks.

The Economist explains the industry’s cash problem . But more companies and states have figured out workarounds . Dispensaries remain skeptical about cryptocurrency , according to Green Market Report.

The U.S. Justice Department issued a reminder that cannabis businesses, including ancillary businesses, don’t have access to the U.S. bankruptcy system .

Ohio officials called for a freeze on MED licenses after it came out that a Maine cannabis consultant with a 2005 felony drug conviction evaluated license applications in the state. The consultant wouldn’t be eligible to receive an Ohio license.

Also in Ohio, a backer of the state’s failed 2015 legalization bid is threatening to sue the state .

Track and trace and advertising issues are the most common infractions by Washington cannabis businesses.

Aside from lawyer David Welch, the new owners of L.A.Weekly appear not to have ties to the cannabis industry.

OmniEarth, a start-up founded by Brigham Young University student Joseph Walker, has developed an organic fertilizer popular with cannabis growers . It’s made from nightcrawler droppings.

To save their businesses, a number of Oregon MED shops are converting to REC .

Denver’s city auditor says the cannabis regulator has improved but needs to be more transparent on how pot taxes get spent.

Leafly interviewed a cannabis packaging designer .

Canadian provinces are struggling to set cannabis prices . The idea is legal weed should be affordable enough to coax users away from the illegal market but not so cheap that younger people overconsume. Nova Scotia plans to sell REC in government liquor stores .

Colorado cannabis company MJardin has acquired a “major” stake in Ontario-based Grand River Organics , a “late-stage applicant” for a MED license. Terms were not disclosed.

Canadian producer Canopy Growth plans to build Denmark’s first legal MED grow .

New Frontier released a $149 report on the Brazilian market .

The Hemp Industries Association is suing the DEA , for classifying CBD as a controlled substance. Arguments before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals are scheduled for February.
Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes for Health, acknowledged a lower rate of opioid overdoses and deaths in legal cannabis states . The data, he cautions, shows correlation, not necessarily causation.
The idea that certain drugs prime users to use more drugs, known as “ common liability theory, ” has breathed new life into the idea of gateway drugs.

Colorado has new rules for cannabis research . Colorado researchers will study the effects of dabbing on driving .

Scientists called for more research into CBD for pets .

Labs tests found mold on cannabis sold in Phoenix.  

U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams’ brother has been in and out of prison for years, stemming largely from his substance abuse. Dr. Adams supports MED research but not full legalization.

A doctor in a legal REC state asked the N.Y. Times’ ethicist if he can accept gifts of cannabis from grateful patients.

A Johns Hopkins psychologist assembled a Spotify playlist for a psychedelic trip .
Thank You to WeedWeek's Sustaining Patrons:
Pamela Hadfield
Co-Founder,  HelloMD
HelloMD: The largest online community of health and wellness cannabis consumers
HelloMD on  Instagram Facebook

Spencer Vodnoy
CEO,  Critical Mind Inc.  Adelanto, CA
Affiliations: CA State Bar; Board Member, Adelanto Growers Association
Critical Mind, Inc. is a Medical Cannabis Cultivation and Manufacturing Facility located in Adelanto, CA. Providing the highest quality Cannabis products. Compliance without Compromise!
Stop and frisk searches in New York City fell 98% (!) from 685,724 in 2011 to 12,404 in 2016.
In video of a Q&A session with Justice Department interns, AG Jeff Sessions mocked someone who noted, correctly, that guns kill far more Americans than marijuana, which doesn’t cause fatal overdoses.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), is moving forward with a plan to drug test some food stamp recipients .

A federal trial began for a Kansas couple seeking $7 million after a 2012 raid on their home. The couple, both former CIA employees, claim local authorities found tea leaves in their trash and falsely called it marijuana to obtain a warrant.

The Missouri Supreme Court ruled against a grower who argued the state’s right to farm law allowed cannabis growing. He’ll spend four months in prison.

In Adelanto, Calif., local authorities raided an illegal extraction lab at a locally prominent cannabis business. It came shortly after the FBI arrested Adelanto’s Mayor Pro-Tem on bribery and attempted arson charges.

Honolulu police returned two guns after re-evaluating its policy on firearms access for MED patients. Delaware law enforcement wants to prohibit cannabis users from buying guns.

Pacific Standard compares the “compassionate” public response to the opioid epidemic , to the mandatory minimum sentences handed out during the crack epidemic. With opioids, the victims are largely white.
There’s further intrigue after the Euflora dispensary team camped outside a city building for 27 days but failed to secure the permit for Denver’s 2018 4/20 rally. Michael “Smokey” Ortiz who entered the building through a different door and beat the Euflora team by steps to the relevant desk, is reportedly friends with last year's organizer who was fined and banned from hosting future rallies after last year’s left a mess.

A lawyer for last year's organizer said his client owns the 4/20 Rally. “It’s our property, we invented it,” he said. “Nobody else can just steal our trademark, our intellectual property, and do a rally.” Stay tuned.
Emily Dufton, discussed her new book Grass Roots: The rise and fall and rise of marijuana in America, with the New York Times. Grab a copy here.

Roads & Kingdoms visited Nipton, Ca., a tiny desert town which may someday become a cannabis resort .

You made it!
Since you made it this far, WeedWeek *might* be worth $2 a month to you.  Consider supporting us on Patreon . Thanks!

Here's the WeedWeek list of  pot journalists on Twitter  and the list of  cannabusiness people on Twitter . Both are works in progress. Recommendations welcome.

I've also created two political Twitter lists you can subscribe to:  Real News  and  Tweeting the Resistance .

Want to reach a devoted audience of top cannabis professionals? Advertise in WeedWeek. Contact Adrienne Nascimento at  for details. 


Advertising policy: Advertisers and contributors through Patreon have no influence on WeedWeek's editorial content or on the content of articles that Alex Halperin writes for other publications. In an effort to replicate the separation of business and editorial operations practiced at reputable news organizations, a WeedWeek salesperson will be responsible for all sales-related contact with advertisers and will work, as much as possible, without input from Halperin. Any future advertising queries sent to Halperin will be referred to a salesperson. All ads and other forms of paid content are clearly distinguishable as such. Halperin will not approach potential advertisers to solicit business, and reserves the right to reject ads if they present a conflict of interest, the appearance of a conflict of interest or for any other reason.

All rights reserved.