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Report Shows Decreased Percentage of Women and Minority Executives in Cannabis Industry

MJBizDaily released a report on October 4 called “Women & Minorities in the Cannabis Industry,” which reviews new statistics about female and people of color executives and business owners in the cannabis industry.

According to MJBizDaily’s findings, the percentage of women and minorities in executive level positions in the cannabis industry have dropped between 2019-2021. The national average of women who hold executive positions in the industry throughout the country is 29.8 percent, but over the past two years, women in those positions in the cannabis industry has fallen to 22.1 percent.

In 2019, approximately 36.8 percent of executive positions in cannabis were held by women. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that the percentage of women in higher level positions in other industries is significantly higher, around 30 percent (in 2018, it was 21 percent).

Likewise, the percentage of people of color in executive positions decreased as well. Currently, only 13.1 percent of those positions are held by people of color, compared to 28 percent in 2019.

In the report’s introduction, MJBizDaily author Jenel Stelton-Holtmeier shares that in this third iteration of this report, much has changed in the industry. “However, racial and gender diversity in the marijuana industry is still lacking—especially in ownership and executive positions,” she wrote. “So too is the amount of hard data by which to benchmark the current state of diversity in the marijuana sector, understand the obstacles standing in the way of a more equitable industry and contextualize the initiatives states are putting in place to address the issue.”


© High Times

Portugal Delays Recreational Cannabis Bills as Luxembourg Also Signals Delay

These are curious days in Europe on the recreational cannabis question. On one hand, the stated intentions of both Portugal and Luxembourg to establish recreational markets as early as next year and certainly by 2023 has been on the drawing board for the past three years. On the other, as the clock ticks down to the final quarter of 2021, politicians in both countries are suddenly pushing the pause if not long-term delay button.

Luxembourg has the longest track record outside of Holland as a country committed to a recreational market, theoretically by 2023. That said, it is suddenly being reported as of the last week of September that the ruling coalition here is now also considering the delay of the same, citing concerns about the legality of the same given current policies at the EU level. This is a little strange given the fact that the Dutch seem to have no issue with the EU policies as they go about implementing a national recreational infrastructure for the first time. Regardless it also points to a need for at least a fig leaf of legitimacy at a regional level so far missing from the discussion.

Beyond the stalling now seen in Luxembourg, for those who were hoping that at least one country in the EU will commit to a recreational market before the end of the year, Portugal had remained a beacon of hope. Portugal has long had one of the most tolerant drug policies generally because of a reaction against the policies of the late dictator Antonio Salazar which ended four years after his death in 1974.

However, the parliament in Portugal has dragged its feet this year and as of last week, began delaying discussion on a bill, which was supposed to go into effect late this year or early next.

Indeed, the timing of both decisions may have everything to do with the German elections in however backward a manner. Namely, that other countries in the EU on the verge of real reform are now stalling to see what Germany will do.


© High Times

Justin Bieber Jumps On Cannabis Industry Bandwagon

Pop superstar Justin Bieber has made a foray into the legal marijuana industry through a partnership to produce a line of pre-rolled joints with California cannabis company Palms Premium that was announced on Monday. Meanwhile, however, cannabis advocates are weary about the number of celebrities waltzing into the industry without paying their dues first.

Sold under the brand name Peaches, a reference to a song by the same name in which Bieber famously mentions “weed from California,” the music artist says the new venture is an attempt to address the stigma associated with cannabis.

“I’m a fan of Palms and what they are doing by making cannabis approachable and helping to destigmatize it—especially for the many people who find it helpful for their mental health,” Bieber said in a statement. “I wanted to make sure that I was doing something with them that felt genuine and Peaches felt like a good place to start.”

Peaches Pre-rolls Available in Four States

The Peaches line of pre-rolls will be available in California, Nevada, Florida and Massachusetts, according to a report from Forbes. Packs of seven half-gram joints will be available in a choice of sativa, indica, or hybrid premium cannabis, all grown indoors and expressing fruity and citrus-dominant terpene profiles. Each pack will retail for $50 to $60, depending on the market.

Tyler Breton, co-founder of Palms, said that the brand’s products are for “not only experienced users, who will appreciate the quality and attention to detail, but first time and casual consumers exhibiting the approachability and benefits of our products.”


© High Times

Wisconsin Lawmakers Could Amplify Punishments for Cannabis Extraction

Wisconsin representatives upped the ante on punishments for cannabis extraction, comparing dangerous manufacturing practices to the meth-making process. In some Wisconsin lawmakers’ eyes, extracts are entirely different from cannabis flower, and the use and manufacturing of them should be punished accordingly.

Wisconsin Examiner reports that on September 30 Wisconsin’s Assembly Committee on Substance Abuse and Prevention held a hearing on a bill, Assembly Bill 440,  that would enhance felony penalties surrounding butane hash oil and related products. 

Hash oil—a concentrated THC extract that has been around for generations—was cited as one of the concerning forms of concentrates. Other popular forms of concentrates that have gained considerable popularity over the past few decades include wax, shatter, live resin, rosin, and the list goes on. But forms of butane hash oil (BHO) is what they’re really after.

Representative Jesse James (R- Altoona) testified on the bill’s particular focus on butane extracts but the measure also covers several facets of the manufacturing process. James emphasized throughout his testimony that certain methods of manufacturing extracts using butane can cause a risk of a chemical reaction and explosion. James cited “the open-loop system,”—a cheap, risky way of making concentrate. 

“Growing marijuana in your home is not going to cause an explosion,” James said. “It could cause a fire if you don’t properly take care of your lamps and everything like that. But this process in and of itself, it’s almost similar to a meth lab.”


© High Times

Pennsylvania Lawmakers Unveil Adult-Use Cannabis Legalization Bill

Two Pennsylvania state lawmakers introduced legislation on Tuesday that would legalize recreational cannabis for adults and create a regulated market for adult-use marijuana. The legislation from Democratic state Reps. Jake Wheatley and Dan Frankel, House Bill 2050, also includes social equity provisions to encourage participation in the legal cannabis industry by members of communities disproportionately impacted by the War on Drugs.

“I’m once again championing the effort to legalize adult-use recreational marijuana in Pennsylvania. We’ve heard from residents across the state, and the overwhelming majority agree it’s time to pass this initiative,” Wheatley said in a joint statement on Tuesday. “Not only would it create jobs and generate much-needed revenue, but it contains important social justice provisions that would eliminate the aggressive enforcement of simple marijuana possession laws in marginalized communities.”

House Bill 2050, which shares the designator of a 2020 cannabis legalization bill that failed to gain the support of the GOP-led legislature, would decriminalize, regulate and tax adult-use, recreational marijuana, making it legal for purchase for those 21 and older. The legislation would also establish multiple grant programs funded by cannabis tax revenue that would benefit small, minority and women-owned businesses in Pennsylvania. Frankel said such measures were necessary to address the harm caused by decades of cannabis prohibition.

“Failed cannabis policies of the past have resulted in the worst of all possible worlds: insufficient protection of the public health, aggressive enforcement that disproportionately harms communities of color and zero revenue for this commonwealth,” said Frankel, who serves as the Democratic chair of the House Health Committee. “With this legislation, Pennsylvania can begin to repair the historical harms and reap the benefits of a fact-based approach to regulating the cultivation, commerce and use of cannabis for adults over 21 years old.”

The legislation would also establish a regulatory process for cannabis growers, processors, and retailers and levy a 10 percent tax on wholesale transactions. License fees for cannabis businesses will be based on gross revenue, with larger companies paying higher fees. Consumers will pay a retail tax of six percent for the first two years, increasing to 12 percent and then 19 percent over the following two years.


© High Times

How Will the German Elections Impact the Recreational Cannabis Market?

The German national election is over, and the results are in. The Cliff’s Notes version of the same is that there has been an upset in the German electoral map in a way that is still reverberating in political circles as coalition talks about which parties will form the new government get underway. 

There are a few issues that most of those parties, which saw the greatest gains this time around all agree on. And the good news for the industry, patients and those who want a recreational market is that this inevitably spells more cannabis reform.

It is for precisely this reason that the German cannabis question is currently all abuzz in the industry domestically because everyone knows that the status quo will not stand. The medical industry has been hamstrung by quality and production issues. Beyond this, there are numerous burdensome insurance requirements and the general refusal of doctors to engage with the same—just on a financial level—let alone matters of efficacy.  

Then, of course, there is the famed German common sense that has begun to filter through the debate, starting with the fact that there have been a few too many high-profile flubs of late—including one of the largest German grocery chains (and one of the top grocery retailers in the world) being raided in August, by the police. All developments are signs that the status quo will not stand much longer. 

There is already a lawsuit now pending, and from the business community, about the classification of CBD—and the need to remove it from the German Narcotics Act to bring this into line with the decision on a European level last year that this cannabinoid is not a narcotic.


© High Times

Marijuana cultivation facility to sprout in Matteson in 2023

by: Julian Crews, WGN Web Desk Posted: Aug 17, 2021 01:35 PM CDT MATTESON, Ill. — A large scale cannabis operation is coming to the south suburbs, and supporters say it'll give the area a much needed economic boost. One of the largest cannabis operators in the country, 4Front Ventures, will be openi...

Veterans push for medical marijuana in conservative South

BYANERI PATTANI •KAISER HEALTH NEWS  •AUGUST 15, 2021  RALEIGH, N.C. (Tribune News Service) — Each time Chayse Roth drives home to North Carolina, he notices the highway welcome signs that declare: "Nation's Most Military Friendly State." "That's a powerful thing to claim," said Roth, a fo...

Cannabis Company Ayr Said to Buy THC-Drink Maker Cultivauna

By Tiffany Kary August 15, 2021, 3:00 PM MST Ayr Wellness Inc., a multistate cannabis company, plans to buy Cultivauna LLC, a maker of cannabis-infused seltzers and water-soluble tinctures, according to a person familiar with the company's plans. The transaction would give Ayr, which already sells c...

Md. Democratic comptroller candidates support cannabis legalization, equitable industry

Bennett Leckrone August 16, 2021, 8:43 AM As efforts to legalize cannabis in Maryland ramp up, Democratic comptroller candidates are looking to create an equitable marijuana industry in the state. House Speaker Adrienne A. Jones (D-Baltimore County) said last month that she would support a referendu...

Village Farms Enters U.S. CBD Market with $75 Million Acquisition

August 16, 2021 at 7:37 am Published by NCV Newswire VANCOUVER, BC, Aug. 16, 2021 /PRNewswire/ – Village Farms International, Inc. ("Village Farms" or the "Company") (NASDAQ: VFF) (TSX: VFF) today announced that it has acquired 100% interest of privately-held, Colorado-based CBD-platform Balanced He...

A Garden Supply Stock With a Fast-Growing Cannabis Patch

By Carol Ryan Aug. 16, 2021 6:40 am ET  A little-known organic garden center supplier has outpaced the likes of Amazon and Netflix on the stock market throughout the pandemic. Knotty cannabis laws should continue to fertilize its growth. Nasdaq-listed GrowGeneration owns a chain of 58 stores ac...

U.S. cannabis firm PharmaCann plans IPO as New York weed legalization lifts demand -sources

By Shariq Khan Aug 16 (Reuters) - PharmaCann, one of the 10 original cannabis licensees in New York, has confidentially filed for an initial public offering that could value it at well over $1 billion, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. The planned IPO would help PharmaCann raise funds b...

With recreational marijuana legalized in many states, companies rethinking drug testing policies

The Center Square Mon, August 16, 2021, 7:00 AM  Amazon recently eliminated marijuana from its drug testing and now treats employee use of it the same as alcohol. Other businesses are changing their marijuana screening policies as well. Todd Maisch, president and CEO of the Illinois Chamber of ...

Texas cancer patients and people with PTSD will soon be able to join state’s expanded medical marijuana program

BY COLLEEN DEGUZMAN AUG. 11, 2021  David Bass came home to Fort Worth in 2006 after serving in the Army but sometimes he feels like he's still in Iraq. After his 25 years in the military, the 64-year-old Desert Storm veteran had nightmares almost every night for six years about being back on th...

Study Shows Cannabis Consumers Are Successful, Motivated, Health-Conscious: Snoop Dogg Weighs In

By Javier Hasse Vices The long-standing, negative stereotypes about cannabis consumers have contributed to a decades-long stigma that lingers to this date, even as legalization spreads across the world while birthing one of the fastest-growing industries of our time. But new data out today, sha...

Democratic lawmakers announce legislation to fully legalize marijuana in Wisconsin

Posted: August 10, 2021 10:54 AM Updated: August 10, 2021 11:05 AM By Logan Rude  SOUTH BELOIT, Wis. — State Democratic lawmakers on Tuesday announced a new bill that would fully legalize marijuana in Wisconsin. During a press conference outside of South Beloit's marijuana dispensary, State Sen...

Marijuana ancillary firm Greenlane raises $32 million in equity

Greenlane Holdings, a Florida-based ancillary marijuana company, said it entered into definitive agreements with institutional investors to raise $32 million from the sale of stock and warrants. A company news release didn't specify how the money would be used, but Greenlane has said in previous reg...

Half Of New Jersey Towns Poised To Ban Cannabis Businesses

 BY MATT KATZ, WNYC AUG. 9, 2021 1:45 P.M.  New Jerseyans overwhelmingly wanted the right to buy legal cannabis. Just not in their own towns—not yet, anyway. Faced with an August 21st deadline to opt out of cannabis operations or be locked into it for five years, almost half of the state's...

Why Marijuana Stock IIPR Popped 13% in July and Is Up 6% in August So Far

Beth McKenna(TMFMcKenna) Aug 9, 2021 at 1:25PM  What happened Shares of Innovative Industrial Properties (NYSE:IIPR) jumped 12.6% in July, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence. The S&P 500 index returned 2.3% last month. The stock's monthly gain largely stems from conti...