WeedWeek
Politics
   

Bankers/Industry Hopeful for Financial Services Access

Newly empowered Democrats in Congress plan to push for banking access legislation in 2019. (Politico)

"There’s no question: Cannabis prohibition will end," Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) takes it further. "Democrats should lead the way. If we fail to act swiftly, I fear as the 2020 election approaches, Donald Trump will claim credit for our work in an effort to shore up support — especially from young voters."

  • Lenders are asking Congress for a "safe harbor" to serve cannabis businesses.
  • One analyst put the likelihood of banking access at 75% and the likelihood of full legalization at 25%.
  • A federal report found more banks are already working green. (Marijuana Moment)
  • Nevada's treasurer-elect is proposing a blockchain system as an alternative to cash for the cannabis industry. (CBS -- Local)
  • Outgoing House Rules Committee chair Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas), who lost his bid for re-election, blocked a vote to weaken hated tax rule 280E. (Marijuana Moment)
Joseph Greve

Michigan REC Ready to Roll

Following last month's vote, Michigan is poised to be a major REC market, though it won't be available commercially until at least the end of 2019.

Holly Mandarich

Colorado to Revisit Cannabis laws

Colorado REC laws are set to sunset in 2019, which could lead to laws favoring greater access. (FOX--local)

  • Under 420-friendly Gov. Jared Polis, look for delivery and public consumption to be on the table.

Farm Bill Progresses

Following a months-long impasse, lawmakers said they've reached a deal on the farm bill which would legalize industrial hemp. (Washington Post)

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Editor Note

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Business
   

Eaze Closing on $65M

S.F.-based Eaze is closing a $65M fundraising at a valuation over $300M, Axios scooped.

  • With the money It plans to expand to other REC states.
  • Jim Clark, who co-founded Netscape, is the largest new investor.
  • The report comes shortly after the delivery app launched Eaze Wellness to sell CBD online in 40+ states.
  • Some drivers find delivering weed an attractive alternative to driving for Uber. (S.F. Chronicle)

A Rush on Weed Patents

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is issuing more marijuana related patents. (Reuters)

  • But they've spawned several lawsuits and it's not clear which will hold up in court.
  • A key issue is whether "a patent is overly broad or obvious in light of “prior art,” the existing level of science or technology against which an invention’s novelty can be judged." In the case of cannabis, it has to account for decades of illegal use and manipulation.
Owen Beard
They won't look like this

Get Ready for Robot Trimmers

Massachusetts based Bloom Automation claims it has developed a robot which can trim cannabis "with the precision and care of a human."The Verge looks at some high-tech cannabis companies.

  • ZDNet explained in September, "The robotic harvester uses machine vision and path planning algorithms to isolate clusters of flowers. The system incorporates a back-lit time of flight camera, which measures depth, as well as a machine vision camera."
  • "The [robot trimmer] segments the plant into three parts, the flower, branch, and leaf," explains CEO Jon Gowa. "We use a conventional neural network and a supervised machine learning set."
  • "Bow Down," to our new robot overlords, Josh Jardine snarks In the Portland Mercury.
  • Trimming northern California's harvest isn't the moneymaking opportunity it once was. (N.Y.Times)
  • The Verge looks at some more high-tech cannabis companies spotted at MJBiz con.

Quick Hits

Health and Science
   

Researchers Find Key Parts of Cannabis Genome

Researchers located the cannabis genes responsible for producing THC and CBD in expanses of "junk DNA" (Toronto Star)

  • The discovery, by US and Canadian scientists, will make it easier to control the potency and CBD content of cannabis plants.
  • Researchers also discovered the gene responsible for producing the lesser-known cannabinoid CBC, said to have medicinal and "slightly intoxicating" effects on humans.

Cannabis for Heart Health

A University of lessHawaii study found cannabis can help patients recovering from heart attacks. (Honolulu Star-Advertiser)

"Anecdotally, people who have heart attacks recover more quickly if they’re marijuana users,” a researcher said. “On the flip side, they have more severe heart attacks to start with.”

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Criminal and Social Justice
   
IG: @bluntsandmoore

Equity Programs Struggling

MJBiz has a deep dive on California's equity plans which have run up against a variety of challenges including a lack of money, and tough competition.

"We’re going to get $3 million, (which) for the amount of people that we have and the size of the (marijuana) market that (L.A.) is projected to be is nothing" Fanny Guzman, co-founder of Latinos for Cannabis.

Quick Hits

  1. Legalization has forced some drug sniffing dogs into early retirement. (N.Y.Times)
  2. In Missouri, MED patients could lose their welfare benefits.
  3. Oregon Pastor John Lee Bishop, a once rising star in evangelical Christian circles, is beginning a five year prison sentence for smuggling marijuana into the US. (L.A.Times)
  4. San Antonio is decriminalizing. (MySA)
  5. A Canadian cannabis entrepreneur explains how he approaches the US border. (CBC)
  6. Barred from selling after a raid, a Windsor, Ont. dispensary is giving weed away.
  7. In Turkey, a rapper named Ezhel has become a national cannabis activist. (Cannabis Wire)
Culture
   

Stoned Video Game Playing Officially Wins Corporate Endorsement

The Stoned Gamer League has a partnership with Amazon-owned Twitch and plans to open an East L.A. arena in early 2019. (Spectrum News)

  • Players are required to provide "proof of elevation," and are awarded bonus points for bong rips and dabs.

Quick Hits

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Editor Note

Advertisers and contributors through Patreon have no influence on WeedWeek's editorial content or on the content of articles WeedWeek writers publish in other publications. In an effort to replicate the separation of business and editorial operations practiced at reputable news organizations, a WeedWeek salesperson will be responsible for all sales-related contact with advertisers and will work, as much as possible, without input from publisher and editor Alex Halperin. Aside from Halperin, editorial staff are not included in business discussions and all advertising queries sent to editorial staff are referred to a salesperson. All ads and other forms of paid content in WeedWeek are clearly distinguishable as such. WeedWeek editorial staffers do not solicit business from sources and Halperin does not sell advertising. WeedWeek reserves the right to reject ads if they present a conflict of interest, the appearance of a conflict of interest or for any other reason.

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