History was made at the United Nations today, when the UN’s Commission for Narcotic Drugs narrowly voted to remove cannabis from a list of drugs previously judged to have little-to-no medicinal benefits. Vice reports that in a 27 to 25 vote victory, the US and UN cast the final two deciding votes to now officially remove cannabis from Schedule IV of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs — potentially opening up the plant to increased medicinal access throughout Europe, along with additional scientific research.
Translation: Your stoner cousin was right — weed is medicine. And now we’re a significant step closer to being able to get the type of research funded that will tell us precisely how it’s best used. The legal status of cannabis has always been a major hurdle when it comes to funding meaningful scientific research studying the long term medicinal benefits of THC, so the United Nations recognizing the medical value of weed remedies some of the unjust prejudice that has been unfairly placed on the plant, despite the historical use of cannabis as a medicine that stretches back to ancient Greece and Egypt. And, as we’ve covered before, medicinal recognition leads to medical legalization which always, always leads to eventual recreational legalization. So this move is a big win for weed worldwide.
To date, 50 countries worldwide have adopted medicinal cannabis programs, and the plant is now fully legal in Canada, Uruguay, and 15 US states. Mexico and Luxembourg are also expected to join the countries that have legalized weed in the near future, with the vote passing Mexico’s senate just days ago.
Arizona’s ballot measure to legalize marijuana passed Tuesday with voters deciding to join 11 other states that have done so despite a conflict with federal law, according to The Associated Press.
Proposition 207 would legalize possession of as much as an ounce of marijuana for adults 21 and older and set up a licensing system for retail sales of the drug, starting with the medical-marijuana dispensaries already operating in the state. Sales could begin in March under the measure.
Once the election results are made official Nov. 30, possession and growing as many as six plants at home will be legal for adults.
The measure also would allow people previously convicted of marijuana crimes, such as the felony charge for possession, to have their records expunged by the courts.
And it would establish special “social equity” licenses for communities historically disenfranchised by marijuana laws.
SEE THE WINNERS: Arizona election results
The Department of Health Services would be responsible for determining who is eligible to apply for those social equity licenses, and would also be responsible for developing rules for the program and reviewing applications from medical dispensaries.
The approximately 120 medical-marijuana dispensaries operating in the state today, which have provided nearly all of the funding for Proposition 207, would be allowed to sell the drug to anyone over 21, not just people who have a doctor’s recommendation and state-issued medical-marijuana card.
Dispensaries are anticipating a crush of new business. The Mint Dispensaries, for example, are prepared to expedite the construction of a new, $25 million, 100,000-square-foot growing operation in north Phoenix to keep their Guadalupe and Mesa retail sites stocked if Proposition 207 passes.
The Mint also already has approval from Mesa to expand its dispensary there as well, and can add additional registers in the Guadalupe store beyond the 21 in the store now, said Raúl Molina, a partner and senior vice president of operations.
“We think we’re ready for it,” Molina said before Election Day.
Company officials do not want to run out of marijuana for medical patients or be left with no supply for recreational customers, which has happened in other states that transitioned from medical to recreational sales.
A similar measure also passed in New Jersey on Tuesday, according to the Associated Press, while recreational-marijuana initiatives were leading in early results in Montana and South Dakota as well.
Backers, opponents react to election
Attorney Adam Trenk, director of the Cannabis Department at the Rose Law Group, said nearly all medical dispensaries are expected to apply to sell recreational marijuana.
“I can’t imagine a world where they wouldn’t because they immediately expand the demographic of people who can walk into the store from just those with (medical-marijuana) cards to anyone over the age of 21,” Trenk said.
He also said his firm would help clients, including some through pro bono work, to expunge criminal records for marijuana-related crimes as allowed through the measure.
“We will, through community law centers, work to help those who qualify to get
By Peter Szekely and Sharon Bernstein
(Reuters) – Voters in New Jersey and Arizona legalized marijuana for recreational use on Tuesday, and in Oregon approved the country’s first therapeutic use for psilocybin, the hallucinogenic drug known as magic mushrooms.
The measures on drug use were among more than a hundred ballot questions put to voters on a range of topics including elections, abortion rights and taxes.
In all, at least 124 statutory and constitutional questions appeared on ballots this year in 32 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).
Among the highlights: Colorado voters defeated a measure that would have banned late-term abortions, Florida approved a hike in the minimum wage and California exempted rideshare and delivery drivers from a state law that would have made them employees of such companies as Lyft and Uber, rather than independent contractors.
Here are some of the key results of this year’s ballot measures based on projections from the NCSL and Edison Research:
Voters in New Jersey and Arizona approved measures to legalize marijuana for recreational use. The question was also on the ballot in Montana and South Dakota, which is also considering the drug’s use for medical purposes. Mississippi voters were also considering legalizing medical marijuana.
Since 1996, 33 other states and the District of Columbia have allowed medical marijuana, 11 had previously approved its recreational use and 16, including some medical marijuana states, have decriminalized simple possession, according to the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.
PSILOCYBIN, AKA MAGIC MUSHROOMSPsilocybin, a hallucinogen also known in its raw form as magic mushrooms, was approved by Oregon voters for therapeutic use for adults. Backers of the Psilocybin Services Act cited research showing benefits of the drug as a treatment for anxiety disorders and other mental health conditions. The measure will set a schedule to further consider the matter and create a regulatory structure for it.
In a related measure, Washington, D.C., voters approved Initiative 81, which directs police to rank “entheogenic plants and fungi,” including psilocybin and mescaline, among its lowest enforcement priorities.
Voters in Florida approved a measure to amend the state constitution to gradually increase its $8.56 per hour minimum wage to $15 by Sept. 30, 2026.
CALIFORNIA GIG WORKERS
California voters approved a measure that would exempt ride-share and delivery drivers from a state law that makes them employees, not contractors, according to Edison Research. The measure, Proposition 22, is the first gig-economy question to go before statewide voters in a campaign. Backers, including Uber Technologies Inc and Lyft Inc, spent more than $190 million on their campaign, making the year’s costliest ballot measure, according to Ballotpedia.
Colorado voters rejected a measure to ban late-term abortions.
(Reporting by Peter Szekely in New York and Sharon Bernstein in Sacramento; Editing by Lincoln Feast.)
The once widely controversial issue of marijuana legalization has been decidedly eclipsed by this year’s divisive presidential race, though voters in five states are being asked to weigh in on legalization. Recreational or medical use, or both, are on the ballot in Arizona, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota.
This year’s elections have marijuana legalization likely pushing into additional U.S. states that could grow the industry’s size by $9 billion, according to cannabis market firm New Frontier Data.
Arizona — Proposition 207
Voters who say “yes” to Proposition 207 in Arizona will support legalized recreational marijuana use for those 21 and older, along with a 16% excise tax on the drug. Voters who say “no” to the measure will support keeping the state as one that permits medical use, yet outlaws recreational use and possession.
Mississippi — Ballot Measure 1, Initiative 65 & Initiative 65A
Mississippi voters this election are being asked to weigh in on medical marijuana legalization options. Recreational use remains illegal in the state and is not up for consideration. As a first step, under Ballot Measure 1, voters must decide to either support or outlaw medical use.
Initiative 65 and Initiative 65A are additional issues voters are being asked to weigh in on, should Ballot Measure 1 pass. A “yes” vote for Initiative 65 would limit medical use for treatment of specific medical conditions, as well as cap quantities that patients could possess at 2.5 ounces, whereas 65A would permit broad medical use and possession, without limitations.
Montana — I-190
Adult recreational use is on Montana’s ballot under the Marijuana Legalization Initiative, or I-190. A “yes” vote to the measure would legalize recreational purchase and use for those 21 and older. Possession of the drug would be capped at 1 ounce, or less than 8 grams of concentrate.
New Jersey — Question 1
Adult recreational use is also on the ballot in New Jersey after efforts to legalize recreational use failed in the state legislature. Voters who cast a “yes” vote to Question 1 will support amending the state’s constitution to permit those who are 21 and older to use and possess marijuana, as well as to permit marijuana to be cultivated, processed, and sold in New Jersey.
South Dakota — Constitutional Amendment A & Measure 26
Voters in South Dakota will consider both recreational and medical marijuana use. Those who vote in favor of Constitutional Amendment A will support amending the state’s constitution to legalize recreational use, as well as possession and distribution of up to one ounce of the drug, for those 21 years old and older.
The measure, if adopted, would also require the state legislature to draft and pass new laws to establish a state medical marijuana program by no later than April 1, 2022. Measure 26, separately, would require the state to form a medical marijuana program for limited use and possession for people afflicted with a debilitating medical condition.
The medical marijuana market is poised to grow by USD 22.33 billion during 2020-2024 progressing at a CAGR of over 24% during the forecast period.
This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201102005680/en/
Technavio has announced its latest market research report titled Global Medical Marijuana Market 2020-2024 (Graphic: Business Wire)
Technavio suggests three forecast scenarios (optimistic, probable, and pessimistic) considering the impact of COVID-19. Download Free Sample Report on COVID-19 Recovery Analysis
The report on the medical marijuana market provides a holistic update, market size and forecast, trends, growth drivers, and challenges, as well as vendor analysis.
The report offers an up-to-date analysis regarding the current global market scenario, the latest trends and drivers, and the overall market environment. The market is driven by the increasing production of medical marijuana.
The medical marijuana market analysis includes application and geography landscape. This study identifies the increase in funding for research and production of medical marijuana as one of the prime reasons driving the medical marijuana market growth during the next few years.
This report presents a detailed picture of the market by the way of study, synthesis, and summation of data from multiple sources by an analysis of key parameters
The Medical Marijuana Market covers the following areas:
Medical Marijuana Market Sizing
Medical Marijuana Market Forecast
Medical Marijuana Market Analysis
Aurora Cannabis Inc.
Cannabis Sativa, Inc.
Canopy Growth Corp.
Cronos Group Inc.
GW Pharmaceuticals Plc
Medical Marijuana, Inc.
United Cannabis Corp.
Vivo Cannabis, Inc.
Key Topics Covered:
PART 01: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
PART 02: SCOPE OF THE REPORT
PART 03: MARKET LANDSCAPE
PART 04: MARKET SIZING
PART 05: FIVE FORCES ANALYSIS
PART 06: MARKET SEGMENTATION BY APPLICATION
Market segmentation by application
Comparison by application
Chronic pain – Market size and forecast 2019-2024
Nausea – Market size and forecast 2019-2024
Others – Market size and forecast 2019-2024
Market opportunity by application
PART 07: CUSTOMER LANDSCAPE
PART 08: GEOGRAPHIC LANDSCAPE
North America – Market size and forecast 2019-2024
Europe – Market size and forecast 2019-2024
APAC – Market size and forecast 2019-2024
South America – Market size and forecast 2019-2024
MEA – Market size and forecast 2019-2024
Key leading countries
PART 09: DECISION FRAMEWORK
PART 10: DRIVERS AND CHALLENGES
PART 11: MARKET TRENDS
Increasing number of awareness campaigns
Launch of medical marijuana education programs
Increase in funding for research and production of medical marijuana
PART 12: VENDOR LANDSCAPE
PART 13: VENDOR ANALYSIS
PART 14: APPENDIX
PART 15: EXPLORE TECHNAVIO
Technavio is a leading global technology research and advisory company. Their research and analysis focuses on emerging market trends and provides actionable insights to help businesses identify market opportunities and develop effective strategies to optimize their market positions. With over 500 specialized analysts, Technavio’s report library consists of more than 17,000 reports and counting, covering 800 technologies, spanning across 50 countries. Their client base consists of enterprises
N.J.’s medical marijuana chief douses senator’s pipe dream of legal weed for sale immediately after the election
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Not long after state Sen. Nick Scutari claimed on Tuesday legislators and regulators may “be able to flip the switch and people might be able to get marijuana, legally, right after the vote,” the head of the state medical cannabis program doused that pipe dream with a bucket of cold water.
“(Some dispensaries) literally do not even have the space to accommodate the level of demand that personal-use sales would bring,” said Jeff Brown, who helms the Department of Health’s Medicinal Marijuana Program. “I could say unequivocally that opening up sales even a few months after the election would be a disaster and would really hurt access for patients who need this as medicine. My number one priority is to ensure that the patients have access — that’s going to be our priority first and foremost.”
Since the passage of Jake Honig’s Law, the medical program continues to grow in terms of patients and demand — about 7,000 patients per month on average and nearly 95,000 patients enrolled in total — but the program continues to face supply challenges for just the current patient population due to the small number of operational cultivators and canopy space.
Scutari, in his comments during an interview with NJ Cannabis Insider streamed live on NJ.com’s Facebook page Tuesday, that “(the) currently operating medical cannabis dispensaries would have an opportunity to sell to the general public for people over 21, if they can certify that they have enough product to satisfy their patients that they’re already treating.”
Brown, who also participated in a closed portion of the webinar, tamped down the senator’s suggestion at the time. He said he wants to keep an open dialogue with legislators and make the program’s priorities clear to medical patients and Garden State citizens as a whole.
“Inventories at alternative treatment centers are increasing, too, but it’s uneven,” he said. “We have some that are expanding capacity and then we have others that are simply maintaining and have really no room to expand cultivation in their current footprints.”
For the past six months, Brown said, the medical cannabis program has averaged about only 2,100 pounds in sales per month, rising to nearly 2,500 in September with a similar trend in October. Based on an average of the patient population, patients typically only buy a half-ounce each month, he said.
As of this past Friday, Brown said, there were about 10,000 pounds of medical cannabis in the market — about evenly split between flower and extracts, though flower tends to have higher sales. That means there’s enough medical cannabis to last about four months, given current sales trends and more limited choices for patients.
Part of the challenges dispensaries face, Brown said, is the small indoor canopy. There’s a dozen cultivators in New Jersey, but the average dispensary only has a canopy of
By Steven Reinberg, HealthDay Reporter
FRIDAY, Oct. 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Teenage boys who see ads for pot are more likely than girls to link marijuana with better sex, a new study suggests.
The reason? Many boys think people who use pot are less inhibited and enjoy sex more, which leads them to want to try marijuana in the future. Girls and young women, however, are less likely to use pot based on messages that connect it to sex, the researchers found.
“The messages adolescents and young adults are seeing are part of what is having impact, the type of appeal and the content, not just the fact that young people are seeing these messages on social media,” said lead author Jessica Fitts Willoughby, an associate professor with the Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University. “Messages matter.”
Beyond the connection between marijuana and sex, advertising and social media that portrays marijuana in any positive light affects teens and young adults, Willoughby added.
Parents need to talk with their kids about having a more critical attitude toward marijuana messages, said co-author Stacey Hust, an associate professor at Murrow.
“The next step is to identify how advertisements affect people as it relates to sex-related marijuana expectancies, as well as the intent for use before and after sex,” Hust said in a university news release.
For the study, the researchers surveyed 350 teens aged 15 to 17 and nearly 1,000 college-aged adults. Regardless of age or sex, researchers found that those who saw more pro-marijuana content on social media intended to use pot in the future.
These findings suggest that regulations of the content of marijuana advertisements, not just where marijuana advertisements are placed, may be needed.
Females and college-aged men did not have the same expectations of pot and its effects on sex as younger boys. The researchers don’t know why older males weren’t influenced in the same way, but one possibility is that college men have more sexual experience to draw on as a means of forming their opinion of sex and marijuana.
The findings were published recently in the Journal of Sex Research.
SOURCE: Washington State University, news release, Oct. 28, 2020
Copyright © 2020 HealthDay. All rights reserved.
His team reported, “Although marijuana is smoked with fewer puffs, larger puff volumes and longer breath holds may yield greater delivery of inhaled elements.” In other words, when compared to tobacco smoking, exposure to chemicals damaging to the heart and lungs may be even greater from smoking marijuana.
Dr. Vaduganathan said he was especially concerned about the increasing number of heart attacks among marijuana users younger than 50. In a registry of cases created by his colleagues, in young patients suffering a first heart attack, “marijuana smoking was identified as one factor that was more common among them.” The registry revealed that, even when tobacco use was taken into account, marijuana use was associated with twice the hazard of death among those under age 50 who suffered their first heart attack.
Other medical reports have suggested possible reasons. A research team headed by Dr. Carl J. Lavie of the John Ochsner Heart and Vascular Institute in New Orleans, writing in the journal Missouri Medicine, cited case reports of inflammation and clots in the arteries and spasms of the coronary arteries in young adults who smoke marijuana.
Another damaging effect that has been linked to marijuana is disruption of the heart’s electrical system, causing abnormal heart rhythms like atrial fibrillation that can result in a stroke. In one survey of marijuana smokers, the risk of stroke was increased more than threefold.
These various findings suggest that a person need not have underlying coronary artery disease to experience cardiovascular dysfunction resulting from the use of marijuana. There are receptors for cannabinoids, the active ingredients in marijuana, on heart muscle cells and blood platelets that are involved in precipitating heart attacks.
Cannabinoids can also interfere with the beneficial effects of various cardiovascular medications, including statins, warfarin, antiarrhythmia drugs, beta-blockers and calcium-channel blockers, the Boston team noted.
The researchers found that in an analysis of 36 studies among people who suffered heart attacks, the top three triggers were use of cocaine, eating a heavy meal and smoking marijuana. And 28 of 33 systematically analyzed studies linked marijuana use to an increased risk of what are called acute coronary syndromes — a reduction of blood flow to the heart that can cause crushing chest pain, shortness of breath or a heart attack.
Marijuana is fast becoming a favorite medication among older Americans, a new study finds.
Cannabis is being used to ease problems such as pain, sleep disturbances and psychiatric conditions like anxiety and depression, researchers say.
Among more than 550 patients surveyed, 15% had used cannabis within the past three years, and 50% of users said they used it regularly and mostly for medical purposes.
“Pain, insomnia and anxiety were the most common reasons for cannabis use and, for the most part, patients reported that cannabis was helping to address these issues, especially with insomnia and pain,” said researcher Christopher Kaufmann. He’s an assistant professor in the Division of Geriatrics and Gerontology in the Department of Medicine at the University of California, San Diego.
Also, 61% of the patients who used cannabis had started using it after age 60.
“Surprisingly, we found that nearly three-fifths of cannabis users reported using cannabis for the first time as older adults. These individuals were a unique group compared to those who used cannabis in the past,” said researcher Kevin Yang, a third-year medical student at UCSD.
“New users were more likely to use cannabis for medical reasons than for recreation. The route of cannabis use also differed with new users more likely to use it topically as a lotion rather than by smoking or ingesting as edibles. Also, they were more likely to inform their doctor about their cannabis use, which reflects that cannabis use is no longer as stigmatized as it was previously,” Yang said in a university news release.
The report was published online recently in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
“There seems to be potential with cannabis, but we need more evidence-based research,” Kaufmann added. “We want to find out how cannabis compares to current medications available. Could cannabis be a safer alternative to treatments, such as opioids and benzodiazepines? Could cannabis help reduce the simultaneous use of multiple medications in older persons?
“We want to find out which conditions cannabis is most effective in treating,” Kaufmann said in the release. “Only then can we better counsel older adults on cannabis use.”
Harvard University has more on medical marijuana.
Copyright 2020 HealthDay. All rights reserved.
ST. LOUIS — Missouri’s first licensed marijuana dispensaries opened this weekend in the St. Louis area with long lines.
The two dispensaries run by N’Bliss opened Saturday in Ellisville and Manchester. Another dispensary is expected to open Monday in the Kansas City area nearly two years after Missouri voters approved a constitutional amendment to allow the sale of medical marijuana.
To buy the drug, people need approval from a doctor and a state medical marijuana card. Prices are expected to be high initially because the supply is limited in the state at this stage. N’Bliss was charging $125 for an eighth of an ounce of marijuana when it opened Saturday.
Kim Haller said she stood in line Saturday because she has long been frustrated with the high cost of medications and injections she uses to treat her multiple sclerosis. Recently, Haller said she had been buying marijuana from a licensed caregiver.
“It helps with my spasticity, which means my muscles don’t move like I like them to, and sleep,” Haller, 54, of St. Peters, said of the marijuana treatment.
In the Kansas City area, Brenda Dougherty said she hopes to be one of Fresh Green’s first customers when it opens this week in Lee’s Summit. The 57-year-old from Warrensburg said she believes marijuana will help relieve her chronic pain condition.
“I don’t want to take any more pills,” she said. “I know this will help. To be quite honest, I have tried it and, yes, it does help.”
The Missouri Department of Health and Human Services expects most of the state’s 192 approved dispensaries to be open by the end of the year.
“Missouri patients have always been our North Star as we work to implement the state’s medical marijuana program,” Dr. Randall Williams, department director, said in a news release. “We greatly appreciate how hard everyone has worked so that patients can begin accessing a safe and well-regulated program.”