California edition / May 16, 2020
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1 REVENUE-STARVED DISTRICTS GET CANNA CURIOUS

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Legal cannabis in California is generally expected to emerge from quarantine strong and poised to employ, something that cannot be said of the state's restaurant, education and beauty industries. And that truth is why talk's growing that our revenue-starved cities and counties could be the means to expand the industry's footprint.  
MJBiz

  • "We hear in offline conversations that this is something cities are going to be looking at very, very strongly. There’s going to be no other industry that’s really growing after this," said Daniel Yi, the Shryne Group's chief communications officer.
  • Just 180 of Cali's 482 municipalities and 29 of the 58 counties allow cannabis companies within city limits. Anaheim and San Jose-adjacent Milpitas are two cities considering an end to prohibition amid declining revenues.

Quick Hit

  1. Whatever form it takes, relief for businesses through the next CARES bill  could stabilize marijuana, that rare American jobs creator.
    Leafly
This week on the podcast
Tammy Pettigrew Is Microdosing Toward Parenting Excellence

WeedWeek Council member Tammy Pettigrew is best known as Instagram educator @thecannabiscutie — one of the fresh voices out of Orange County weed. Alex and Donnell chat with Pettigrew about weed’s place post-quarantine, and how microdosing edibles has been a recent key to pleasant parenting.

 

  • An educator and cannabis advocate, Tammy Pettigrew also has a MBA.
  • Pettigrew, who first appeared on Episode 49 of this podcast, has taken her home classroom to her garden, to further de-stigmatize the  cannabis for her children.
  • She said weed should not be viewed as a remedy to the recent rise in domestic violence issues.

2 U.S. MANUFACTURING IS WATCHING

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Mainstream manufacturers who keep up-to-date on cannabis industry market research know that packaging, labeling and marketing rules in the sector are complex. The ones who study hard find themselves adapting well to this unfamiliar market.
ThomasNet

  • As cannabis marketing and branding can matter even more than in traditional markets, label manufacturers have an even bigger assignment than knowing what goes on a product package; they literally need to deal with the weed world's small print.
  • Manufacturers must utilize data explaining who pot's emerging consumer base is.
  • Conversely, the way cannabis companies are moving through the COVID-19 crisis—particularly their adroit use of social media and commerce platforms—is proving educational for manufacturers.

Quick Hit

  1. When anti-legalization group Smart Approaches to Marijuana objected to industry relief being addressed in the House of Representatives' proposed CARES sequel, Nancy Pelosi tried to set Kevin Sabet straight.
    The Hill
A note from the editor

Since 2015, WeedWeek has been the best way to keep up with the Green Rush. WeedWeek’s audience includes many of the most influential figures in cannabis because we are editorially independentAdvertisers have no influence on our editorial content.

We publish original reporting and analysis daily plus two free newsletters:

1) WeedWeek by founder Alex Halperin

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Follow us on Google News and be the first to see new WeedWeek stories.

Tips, comments and complaints to Donnell donny@weedweek.net.

To advertise with us contact Lisa Marie Dudenhoeffer lisamarie@weedweek.net.

3 NEWSOM SHELVES PLAN TO COMBINE TOP POT AGENCIES

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GETTY IMAGES

As though the expected shutdown of pending legislation critical to the state's industry weren't painful enough, on Thursday Gov. Newsom delivered to the reform movement yet another crotchpunch with his decision to delay combining California's three regulatory bodies.
MJ Biz Daily

  • The state was “in the process of developing a more detailed plan" for folding into one agency the Bureau of Cannabis Control, the Department of Food and Agriculture and the Department of Public Health, which — as announced in January — would all become the new Department of Cannabis Control. "However," said the governor in a statement accompanying his budget revision summary, "this process was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, requiring a delay in the consolidation as planned," .
  • Still separate, the three regulatory agencies are set to receive $143.8M in funding. 

Quick Hits

  1. On May 7, Roseville Electric Utility reported to local police that one house in the Sacramento-area suburb was using 16 times the power that a crib of its size normally would use. Seizure of 700 plants resulted from the call, Roseville police announced Tuesday on Facebook.
    Sacramento Bee
  2. Its ability to counter the supply shortfall and potential for breaking monopolies are two reasons why crowdsourcing has significantly altered the weed game
    Green Entrepreneur
  3. The Golden State will cross a threshold when its novel appellation program goes into effect at year's end. It's a historical benchmark. But what's an appellation, anyway?  
    Berger Greer

 

 



 

4 COVID RELIEF OPTIONS NOW INCLUDE FEE DEFERRAL

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As a means of providing financial relief to cannabis firms, the state's three regulatory agencies began offering a 60-day extension to companies owing license fees.
California Cannabis Portal

5 JUSHI LEAVES S.D. DISPENSARY AT ALTAR

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Florida's Jushi Holdings was set to spend $12M on an unnamed San Diego dispensary but terminated the acquisition and launched a REC shop in Illinois.
Globe News Wire

  • On Sunday, Jushi officially shut down the California deal. The next day it began REC sales at Jushi's Normal, Illinois site, the company's second Illinois dispensary. 
  • A Canadian Securities Exchange-listed Jushi is still coming to Cali. The company simply isn't going in like that. Or—as we should be saying—Jushi shan't be coming out that way: Jushi reportedly is finalizing a license in Santa Barbara County and a delivery license in Culver City. 

    Quick Hit

  1. The March cancellation of Harvest's blockbuster $850M merger with Verano Holdings and the unexpected reversal that resulted in a High Times deal last month are only a few developments that have watchers wondering what's up with the monster MSO.
    MJ Biz Daily

6 THEY DESTROY POT PLANTS, DON’T THEY?

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On Tuesday, Mendocino County investigators reportedly discovered 55 grow houses on the Round Valley Indian Reservation, along with swimming pools to facilitate watering. Deputies destroyed—again, why are we still doing this?—22,000 certainly innocent and most likely beautiful cannabis plants
CBS SF Bay Area

  • According to the sheriff's department, staff had met repeatedly with the tribal council on the matter of “non-native persons” starting large marijuana growing operations on the reservation.
  • “Community members, including many of the tribal elders, have voiced their fear about this activity as there has been a marked increase in gunfire and acts of intimidation associated with the large marijuana gardens,” the sheriff says. Waste and chemicals were also found on the lands.

7 GENES GENES GENES IN THE INTERNATIONAL SEEDS GAME

The Cali Connection Seed Company is run by Los Angeles native Swerve, who stresses that excelling at genetics must be foremost to anyone looking to shine in his part of the industry.
Forbes

  • In 2003-2004, Swerve provided clones, dubbed "Swerves Cuts," to the MED community. He calls them the "rarest most sought-after genetics" of that time.
  • The Cali Connection Seed Company first opened its doors in 2008. A first-generation Italian immigrant, Swerve happened to hold U.S. and Italian passports, which allowed him to build on his SoCal popularity with a European branch of the company. The seeds have South American distribution as well. 

Quick Hit

  1. Has there been a better time to consider cannabis municipal bonds? The idea may strike you as new, but similar approaches are already in place. 
    Green Entrepreneur 

8 KERN TOWN FLIPS 180 ON HEMP

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Last October in Kern County, sheriff's deputies and officers of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife destroyed 500 acres of hemp located just outside the city limits of Arvin. Apothio, the vertically integrated owner of that crop, sued the county for $1B

That was then. Now, on the 12th day of June, hemp will become legal in Arvin. Apothio is expected to be first in line to be licensed. 
Cannabis Business Times

  • Last fall's "catalyzing moment" marked a pro-cannabis landmark in a county wrestling with weed's inevitable mainstreaming. Kern last year shut down all dispensaries, making it the sole county without even MED. 
  • Once hemp is established, Arvin officials will be empowered to regulate odor issues and "public nuisance abatement requirements," among other cultivation facets. 

Quick Hits

  1. Delano's GX Farms is suing a Colorado grower for $17M because the hemp seed bought by GX yielded lower-than-promised germination rates.
    Hemp Industry Daily
  2. Yo, admit that you've wondered: What exactly is a cannabis czar’s job, anyway? The answer, as with most things weed-related, is that it varies depending on circumstance.
    High Times

9 ALASKA REVERSES NEW TRANSPORT RULE

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In April, Alaska's Marijuana Control Board passed emergency regulations that briefly permitted cannabis products to be transported to Alaska’s remote regions by boat or airplane, unaccompanied.

On May 7, Alaska repealed that policy, which the board now says conflicts with Federal Aviation Administration policy.
Marijuana Moment

  • The state believed a repeal necessary to preserve public peace and safety. “While the intent of this measure was to limit the need for individuals to enter into small communities off established road systems and potentially prevent the spread of COVID-19, the emergency regulations conflict with and are preempted by federal law applicable to commercial air and marine carriers and are therefore invalid,” the board wrote in a memo last week. 
  • Interpretation of this law is murky. Los Angeles International Airport has allowed passengers to carry state-legal marijuana on planes since 2018.

10 HOW JIM BELUSHI DITCHED L.A. FOR RURAL OREGON

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(Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

A decade ago, Jim Belushi fell in love with Oregon while on a family vacation. "I went naked into the cold-ass [Rogue] river!" he says. "When I came out, I thought 'I belong here.'"

First the actor bought five acres 12 miles north of Medford. Then he bought another 85 acres. Now Belushi is a bonafide Oregonian
PDX Monthly

  • When Oregon went legal in 2017, he began growing. "Captain Jack," who supplied The Blues Brothers with Afghan weed back in the day, is cultivating at Belushi's Farm.
  • Belushi saw Medford’s run-down 1930 Holly Theatre and had his non-Blues Brothers band — the Sacred Hearts — headline a restoration benefit concert. He raised nearly $200,000.
  • "If John was a pothead, he'd be alive today," Belushi says. 

Quick Hit

  1. Two decades into Christianity, Megadeth's Dave Mustaine found himself outside of Headbanger's Ball and in the throes of a cancer battle. Now he sees the divine in CBD. "I think the world is just now finding out the beauty of cannabis," he says.
    Metal Hammer