March 3, 2018
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ALEX HALPERIN
IN OTHER WEEDWEEK NEWS:
This week on the podcast, Hayley and Alex talk to Jackie Fox, otherwise known as Hayley's mom, about becoming a medical cannabis patient later in life. It's a great conversation which I suspect some of you will want to play for your parents. I also caught up with Michael Gorenstein CEO of Cronos Group, who just took the company public on the NASDAQ. The episode lands Monday at 4:20 p.m. Pacific.

Don't forget to rate it five stars on iTunes !

Previous shows feature:
-Episode 7 Dr. Peter Grinspoon, Harvard Medical School, on cannabis, opioids and the medical establishment.
-Episode 6 Anja Charbonneau, editor of design forward cannabis magazine Broccoli
-Episode 4 L.A. cannabis Business attorney  Ariel Clark on what cannabis entrepreneurs need to know
-Episode 3 Congressman and longtime legalization supporter Earl Blumenauer
-Episode 2  Emily Dufton, author of Grass Roots: The rise and fall and rise of marijuana in America, on the history of legalization

Comments or feedback? Don't be shy. Our producer is Katie Long.

Interested in sponsorship opportunities? Contact here.
Launching this week, WeedWeek Canada is a Saturday morning newsletter for professionals in the world's largest fully-legal cannabis market. WWCanada aims to deliver key data and insights in a quick, digestible format. Plus, Reporter Jesse Staniforth is incentivized to deliver exclusive scoops.

Like WeedWeek, WWCanada strives to replicate the separation of business and editorial operations practiced at reputable news organizations. A dvertisers have no influence on editorial content. (You can see the rest of our ethics policy at the bottom of this email.)



WWCanada is written by Jesse Staniforth, a freelance journalist in Montreal who has reported extensively on indigenous issues, cybersecurity, food safety, and cannabis for outlets including Leafly, ThinkProgress, The Walrus and Salon. You can find him on twitter @jbstaniforth or on his prolific Instagram feed.
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The 2018 U.S. midterm elections are coming. Register to vote and/or get the information you need to vote here.
Here's the news.
POLITICS
A survey by NJ Cannabis Insider found REC legalization would fail in the New Jersey Senate despite strong support from Gov. Phil Murphy (D). State senator Ronald Rice (D) wants to see REC legalization on the ballot , even if it’s non-binding.

The state is also evaluating whether to take cannabis off its list of the most dangerous substances.
A federal judge threw out a case against U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions challenging the illegality of cannabis. The judge said plaintiffs should petition the government.

Sessions has declined to meet with several Democratic governors in legal states.

The Coffee Joint, in Denver’s Lincoln Park neighborhood, will soon be the first U.S. business licensed to allow cannabis consumption on premises. A Colorado bill would allow cannabis “tasting rooms” at dispensaries.

On a “report card,” anti-cannabis activists gave Colorado legalization eight out of eight Fs in categories including preventing stoned driving, and youth use prevention.

After taking in more than expected in the first months of legalization, Los Angeles is increasing its staff for regulating pot . L.A. city council supports a state cannabis bank . L.A. “cannabis czar” Cat Packer talked social equity with Vice.

The L.A. Times visits Calaveras County which banned commercial cannabis grows. Leafly’s Peter Hecht explains how liberal Marin County, Calif., “turned NIMBY on cannabis.”

Massachusetts will delay social use and delivery until at least October.

Illinois is a step closer to an “advisory” ballot initiative (Chi.Trib.) on REC in November. In another advisory vote, Cook County’s (Chicago) March Primary (Chi. Trib.) will ask voters if they favor legal REC.

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) said he’d veto any REC bill .

A former FBI agent named Ben Wolf, who has dubbed himself the “cannabis candidate,” is one of three Democrats challenging incumbent Democrat Mike Quigley in a Congressional district which includes parts of Chicago and the suburbs. Wolf tweeted a picture of himself smoking a joint in front of a painted American flag .

A Maryland bill to expand minority cannabis business ownership advanced. A bill in Rhode Island would lead to a REC ballot initiative this fall.


Utah is closer to voting on MED this fall.

Legal MED harvests have begun in Jamaica .

Israeli politicians continued to push for MED exports . Agriculture secretary Uri Ariel denied press reports that President Trump pressured the country not to allow MED exports.
BUSINESS
Canada’s Cronos Group became the first licensed cannabis producer (CNN) to trade on a major U.S. stock exchange. Shares opened Tuesday under the symbol CRON. Bloomberg calls the listing a “key milestone” for the industry.

I spoke to CEO Michael Gorenstein in this coming Monday’s episode of The WeedWeek Podcast . 🍁For more see WeedWeek Canada .

Canopy Growth CEO Bruce Linton said the company wants to list on NASDAQ (MJBiz) as well.

Underwriters called off a C$70M stock sale by Canadian producer Maricann , amid an insider trading probe. 🍁For more see WeedWeek Canada .

Canada’s Aurora signed a deal to supply MED to pharmacy chain Shoppers Drug Mart. 🍁For more see WeedWeek Canada .
Constellation Brands, the liquor company which acquired a stake in Canada’s Canopy Growth last year, has high hopes for cannabis beverages .

Mainstream business groups are asking the White House for guidance on cannabis, including on how it pertains to use by employees .

Canada’s Aphria is eyeing the Greek market , where MED legalization passed a key hurdle.

Several Canadian colleges are beginning cannabis curricula to prepare workers for the industry.

Canadian companies lead the world on cannabis fundraising. (Quartz says Silicon Valley VC funds still have concerns .)

Cut out of California’s industry, Native American tribes may try to forge their own path .

Matt Cochran, the former executive suing Partner Colorado, a cannabis credit union, has been sued himself for misleading investors about a financial services company called BudTeller, where he was president. Cochran denies the allegations.

Colorado may make it easier for out of staters to invest in cannabis companies. Colorado chain The Green Solution got permission to open three shops in Florida .

Leafly asks if Jeff Sessions cost a Washington testing lab a bank loan.

Massachusetts regulators voted to cap growers at 100,000 square feet of canopy.

A federal bankruptcy judge for the ninth circuit argues bankruptcy protections don’t need to be waived automatically if the debtor has a tangential relationship to the cannabis industry.

Canna Law Blog’s Hilary Bricken posts on the dos and don’ts of cannabis joint ventures .

New Cannabis Ventures’ global pot stock index plunged more than 25% in February .

Rolling Stone profiles Ziggy, a longtime illegal grower trying to deliver pesticide free weed to California.

Massachusetts stopped sales at two MED dispensaries (Bos. Globe) due to pesticide concerns. Regulators are also working to ensure supply. (WBUR)

The producer of the Woodstock music festivals has filed a trademark infringement suit against a cannabis company called Woodstock.

Fast Company named dosist (formerly hmbldt) to its list of most innovative companies 2018. The company also figures in Wired’s look at why it’s so hard to dose cannabis .

Pharma company Eli Lilly said descheduling cannabis is not a “core priority.

Legalization appears to have boosted home values in Colorado.

It’s also been a boon for Pope Scientific , a Wisconsin company which makes laboratory distillation equipment.

Two pot shops are suing Billings, Mont., for its new anti-weed stance.

High Times hired Pandora executive Brian Rucker as Senior Vice President, events and partnerships.

A pro-legalization group is selling Jeff Sessions rolling papers .

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HEALTH & SCIENCE
A federal lawsuit challenges “other than honorable” discharges from the U.S. Navy and Marines associated with PTSD, including among those veterans who use MED. Compared to the Army and Air Force, the Navy and Marines are stingier with upgrading discharges.

Congressman Phil Roe (R-Tenn.), a key figure on veterans issues said the Department of Veterans Affairs should study MED .

Leafly explains how the American Legion, traditionally a conservative group, became a leading advocate for MED access and research .

Canada’s military is “wrestling” with legalization. 🍁For more see WeedWeek Canada .
Stat has a report on neurobiologist Yasmin Hurd, who is struggling to study CBD as a treatment for opioid addiction.

A survey found one in seven Ohioans use cannabis , more than in the past.

Ohio State law professor Douglas A. Berman writes that a new study which suggests legalization leads to more pedestrian fatalities only achieved that result by omitting California data . Here’s the N.Y. Times on the study .

The Minnesota Health Department found 42% of patients with pain find significant relief with MED.

The Washington Post looks at how the anti-drug D.A.R.E. program has evolved amid legal weed and the opioid epidemic.

The Atlantic says cannabis is catching on with moms. A survey found more than 42% of Ivy League students have tried marijuana.

The active ingredient in psychedelic mushrooms may have evolved to reduce insects’ appetites .
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CRIMINAL JUSTICE
Speaking at an opioids event, Trump called for the death penalty for illegal drug dealers. "Some countries ... have the ultimate penalty and they have much less of a drug problem then we do."

“If you shoot one person, they give you the death penalty,” Trump said. “These people can kill two, three thousand people and nothing happens to them.”
Axios reports Congress is stepping up efforts to fight the opioid crisis.

The Stranger’s Lester Black looks for lessons in the case of a very large man who ate edibles in Seattle before a flight to Beijing and started a brawl. While in flight, first class traveler Joseph D. Hudek IV exited the lavatory shirtless and tried to open the a plane door. 

Hudek, who pleaded guilty to four felonies and faces up to 20 years in prison, first tried a marijuana incapacity defense, but a judge rejected it on grounds that Hudek consumed voluntarily.

N.Y.P.D. says complaints, not bias, lead to the racial disparity in pot arrests.

Following reporting by ProPublica, Congressional Democrats called for investigations into DEA actions in Mexico which led to cartels killing dozens or hundreds of innocent victims .

Senate Judiciary Chair Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) pushed back on conservatives who want prison reform but not sentencing reform.

Trump named four to the U.S. Sentencing Commission , a body tasked with reducing sentencing disparities. Of them, one opposes sentencing reform and one has called for the commission to be abolished.

The Root says reparative justice is needed to end the war on drugs. Reason says conservatives should talk more about the drug war .

A Florida attorney was disbarred for selling fake permission to grow your own MED cards for $800. He began doing so before MED was legal in Florida.

A bill in Vermont would allow cities to classify pot smoke as a public nuisance and fine offenders.

A Mississippi police chief was suspended with pay after video appeared to catch him smoking a bowl.

An Ohio milkman is accused of smuggling drugs into a prison.

A mistrial was declared during jury selection in the trial of Denver’s International Church of Cannabis. Three defendants face misdemeanor charges.

A vape pen battery caused a “mini fire” in the security line at Denver airport. The owner was not charged.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte ordered police and soldiers not to cooperate in any probe of his war on drugs.
CULTURE
The baseball coach at Texas Wesleyan University messaged a high school student that he wouldn’t recruit in Colorado because players there have trouble passing the drug test. The school said the incident is under investigation.
Oscar-winner Charlize Theron used to be a “wake and baker.” She quit but is open to trying cannabis again, E Online reports. Comedian Lewis Black travels with edibles .

Russia will allow football fans to bring MED to this year’s World Cup, provided they have a doctor’s note in the Russian language.

The New Yorker examines Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar’s “ posthumous celebrity.
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Bye,
Alex 

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