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In The U.S Hemp Is Finally About To Go Fully Legit

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Congress is on the verge of officially legalizing industrial hemp, with a measure that would create a legal distinction between the popular crop and other, intoxicating strains of marijuana. In a statement Thursday, leaders of the U.S. Senate and House agricultural committees reported that they’d reached a tentative agreement on the 2018 Farm Bill. Included in that larger piece of legislation are a number of provisions that would allow for the commercial cultivation, research and development of industrial hemp. A vote is expected by the end of the year. Under the new farm bill, hemp would be defined as any part of a marijuana plant with a THC concentration of 0.3 percent or less. Hemp is a variety of cannabis that contains very low amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana. While strains of cannabis with higher THC can get people high, hemp does not. There are a few remaining procedural hurdles that could threaten the legislation, but for the moment, the broader farm bill and its hemp measures look likely to pass, said Eric Steenstra, president of Vote Hemp, an advocacy group. “We’ve had five years and what we’ve seen is that there are a lot of people who are wanting to grow this crop..

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It is typically grown for use in food, fuel, textiles and other applications. Since 1970, however, federal law has classified all cannabis plants as Schedule I substances, alongside drugs like heroin, LSD and a number of deadly synthetic opioids. “The hemp part of the bill has never really been in dispute,” said Steenstra. “I feel very optimistic about this.” In 2014, Congress passed a farm bill renewal that allowed for pilot programs and research on hemp. Over the past few years, hemp has begun to develop into its own thriving industry. Cultivation operations quickly sprouted up across the U.S., and in 2018, more than 3,500 licenses were issued in 23 states, leading to over 77,000 acres of hemp being planted, according to Vote Hemp. In 2015, just 9,650 acres of hemp had been planted in 15 states, Steenstra added. That explosive growth has helped convince skeptical lawmakers that the longstanding prohibition on hemp is no longer defensible. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), once a vocal opponent of hemp legalization, has since become a leading advocate for the initiative.

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Higher Dispensary Pot Sales Expected On ‘Weed Wednesday”

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Cannabis industry insiders are predicting a sales “high” as pot smokers stock up on supplies before the Thanksgiving holiday. Thursday is supposed to be all about turkey, but Wednesday is apparently all about THC. “We expect this year’s holiday week to be awesome since so many Americans are becoming more open to cannabis consumption across the USA, particularly in California since legalization in January.” “Last year, Eaze saw a 98 percent increase in deliveries on Green Wednesday compared to a typical Wednesday in 2017,” Shriavi told HuffPost. Shiran Shiravi, the director of consumer communications at Eaze, a company that delivers cannabis products in California, expects to handle nearly double the doobie deliveries of a typical Wednesday, based on past results. That spike comes with a risk of shortages in states like Massachusetts, which on Tuesday will become the first state east of the Mississippi where pot is legal, according to the Boston Globe. “Obviously there is an immense demand, and we’ve been preparing for a while to help meet this. Sam Barber of Cultivate, a dispensary in Leicester, told WCVB TV it’s possible that demand will initially outpace the supply. We can’t make any guarantees about how long our supplies will last.

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Jessie Gibson, the co-founder and VP of Marketing for Greenery Map, a cannabis search engine and app, says shortages are a fact of life in his business for the short term. Some industry insiders say shortages and long lines at dispensaries are possible even in states like California where marijuana has been legally available since the first of the year.  “I think that the extent of the shortages will continue, but it will be market specific. Somewhere that is recently legal doesn’t have the same supply as let’s say California, but the demand will be very high. “We are seeing shortages every day these days as the interest continues to grow, and as cannabis sheds its stigma.” Others like Hannah Davis of Mammoth Distribution, which distributes cannabis products all over California, believes retailers are prepared for the lift in sales. “We expect sales to double this week, but we’re seeing our retailers stocking up so, hopefully, it’s not an issue,” she said. “I imagine that we will see these shortages for a number of years while the producers catch up with the ever-growing demand.” “I do expect people to make larger purchases to share with friends.” And The real question is, with a rise in cannabis sales for Thanksgiving, will we see a decrease in leftovers?”

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3 States Legalize Marijuana For Recreational Or Medical Use

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Three more states legalized marijuana for recreational or medical use on Tuesday. The victories in Michigan, Missouri and Utah expand the significant gains in the movement to legalize marijuana. In both Utah and Missouri, voters legalized marijuana for medical purposes ― the 31st and 32nd states to approve medical cannabis. Voters in Michigan legalized recreational marijuana, making it the 10th state in the nation and the first state in the Midwest to do so. North Dakota, voters rejected a measure that would have legalized recreational marijuana. Steve Hawkins, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project said “this is yet another rejected election for the movement to end marijuana prohibition.“ “Voters have once again sent a message loud and clear that it is time to legalize and regulate marijuana. The Michigan victory highlights just how widespread support is for marijuana policy reform. Michigan voters approved Proposal 1, allowing adults 21 and older to buy, grow, use and possess marijuana for recreational purposes. Adults can grow up to 12 marijuana plants in their homes for personal use. Additionally, the initiative legalizes the cultivation of industrial hemp, which can be used to make textiles, biofuels and foods. Under the measure, adults can be in possession of 2.5 ounces of marijuana, a provision similar to the state’s medical marijuana law that was approved in 2008.

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This issue does not only enjoy strong support on the coasts but also in the Midwest and all throughout the country.”  Voters in Missouri were considering three separate proposals to legalize medical marijuana on their ballot, and all three aimed to legalize the use, purchase and possession of marijuana for medical purposes and would allow the state to set up a regulatory framework for licensed dispensaries. On Tuesday night, just one passed. Amendment 2 legalized medical marijuana and imposes a 4 percent tax on all marijuana sales. That revenue will be used for health care services for veterans. The Salt Lake Tribune in Utah, projected that voters would approve Proposition 2, which allows patients to legally use, possess and purchase marijuana for medical purposes for conditions such as HIV, multiple sclerosis, post-traumatic stress disorder, epilepsy, autism, cancer and Alzheimer’s. The measure would ban the smoking of marijuana but does allow vaping, marijuana-infused edibles and other means of consumption. During any 14-day period, a state-licensed cardholder could purchase as much as 2 ounces of marijuana. Beginning in 2021, medical marijuana cardholders who live more than 100 miles from a state-licensed dispensary would be allowed to grow as many as six marijuana plants for personal medicinal use. However, access to legal medical marijuana was likely in the state, regardless if the measure passed. In October, Utah medical marijuana advocates and state lawmakers agreed to a compromise bill that would legalize medical marijuana in the state but with some differences from the ballot initiative.

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How Edibles Are Shedding Their Weed Stigma In The Food World

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At one point in cannabis culture history, mastering the art of baking the perfect weed brownie was considered a rite of passage, marijuana-infused foods are evolving far beyond pot brownies. The THC-infused world of eats has evolved far beyond brownies, cookies and admittedly impressive dispensary snacks and moved into the culinary space. Thanks to the development of medical marijuana programs and the decriminalization and legalization of recreational cannabis in multiple states. Cannabis cuisine has been gaining popularity among casual consumers and connoisseurs alike, but now it’s being welcomed into the mainstream as never before. When Martha Stewart wants in, you know it’s gone mainstream. Media and entertainment have been pushing the narrative of marijuana normalcy into the homes of more conventional audiences with shows like Vice’s “Bong Appetit” and VH1’s “Snoop and Martha’s Potluck Dinner Party.”

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Chefs around the country are embracing cannabis and elevating the lowly edible to the same sensory realm as high-end cuisine by curating pop-up dinners, supper clubs and private events where cannabis can shine. Cat Cora, the first female “Iron Chef” who recently graced the cover of Cannabis Now Magazine, and an advocate for cannabis, is speaking out about infusing foods with marijuana. “I’m a big proponent for olive oil. I’m Greek, obviously, but the Mediterranean diet as we know it is the healthiest diet on the planet. So [I’m adding cannabis olive oil to] anything that I can infuse.” “I’m learning a lot about usage, dosage, things like that,” she told the magazine in April. For example, she said she’s put cannabis olive oil in vinaigrette for salads. “I have so many amazing ideas and a lot of things that I really want to apply it to, “I want to create products around cannabis with the right partner and the right situation.” Bringing cannabis into the culinary conversation is important because it allows people to open their minds to something they may have been against because they haven’t understood its potential. For now, you won’t find restaurants that offer full-service cannabis dining even in states like California or Colorado.

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