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Connecticut lawmakers on Tuesday approved medical cannabis to treat an additional five conditions, which likely will boost MMJ sales in the state. The General Assembly’s Regulations Review Committee voted to add the conditions, including Tourette syndrome and intractable neuropathic pain. Legislators also approved medical marijuana as a treatment for patients younger than 18 with those same […]
Original Article Source: https://mjbizdaily.com/connecticut-adds-medical-marijuana-conditions/
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Opponents of medical and recreational marijuana laws often raise concerns about their effect on public health, claiming that such policies will result in a rise of cannabis use disorder and the use of other potentially harmful substances. A new review, however, found that while marijuana use does increase among adults—but not teens—after legalization, that doesn’t necessarily mean more people are engaging in risky behavior.
“Research suggests [medical cannabis laws] increase adult but not adolescent cannabis use, and provisions of the laws associated with less regulated supply may increase adult cannabis use disorders,” the paper states. “These laws may reduce some opioid-related harms, while their impacts on alcohol and tobacco use remain uncertain.”
To understand the relationship between marijuana laws and public health outcomes, researchers in California analyzed studies published between January 2005 and February 2019 that focused on marijuana policy and consumption, as well as alcohol, opioid and tobacco use. They found 42 articles that fit their criteria.
“Understanding how cannabis policies impact cannabis use is key to making subsequent causal claims about their effects on the use of other substances, but it is also an important question in and of itself,” the review’s authors write. “If liberalization does not impact cannabis use, but instead shifts some or all existing use (or potential use) from the illegal to legal market, then arguably such policies are welfare enhancing from a governmental perspective (e.g., increased tax revenues, reduced law enforcement expenditures) and from a consumer perspective (e.g., a safer and more consistent product).”
Here’s a brief look at some of their findings, which were published this month in the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse:
“Despite the growing attention of researchers, the evidence related to the public health impacts of MCLs or RCLs is inconclusive regarding many of the most important considerations,” the review‘s authors conclude. Not only is more research needed, but a closer look at the nuances of each state’s laws and consideration of how long it takes markets to fully emerge are also important to understand the effects of these policies.
Photo courtesy of Sam Doucette on Unsplash.
The post Here’s What Researchers Know So Far About How Marijuana Legalization Affects Public Health appeared first on Marijuana Moment.
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The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sent a warning letter to a Florida-based CBD company on Tuesday, alleging that the business made several unsanctioned claims about the therapeutic benefits of their products.
The federal agencies accused Rooted Apothecary of unlawfully asserting that their cannabidiol products could treat symptoms of conditions such as ADHD, Parkinson’s disease, ear aches, ADHD and autism. Those claims appeared on the company’s website and social media accounts, they said.
Certain products appeared to be marketed as dietary supplements, which FDA currently prohibits as it works to develop an alternative regulatory scheme for CBD.
“Cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds are subject to the same laws and requirements as FDA-regulated products that contain any other substance,” Acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless said in a press release. “We are working to protect Americans from companies marketing products with unsubstantiated claims that they prevent, diagnose, treat, or cure a number of diseases or conditions.”
“We’ve sent numerous warning letters that focus on matters of significant public health concern to CBD companies, and these actions should send a message to the broader market about complying with FDA requirements,” he said. “As we examine potential regulatory pathways for the lawful marketing of cannabis products, protecting and promoting public health through sound, science-based decision-making remains our top priority.”
FTC’s complaint with the company is that it violated a law that requires businesses that advertise medical claims about their products to have “competent and reliable scientific evidence” to back them up, which could include human clinical trials. Making or exaggerating such claims through “a product name, website name, metatags, or other means” without proper evidence is also prohibited.
Rooted Apothecary must respond to the agencies within 15 working days to explain what steps it’s taking to resolve the issues. If the company fails to do so, it is subject to legal action, including the possible seizure of its products or an injunction. It may also have to compensate customers.
FDA emphasized that CBD products—other than the prescription medication Epidiolex, for the treatment of intractable epilepsy—are not currently allowed. But it also reiterated that the agency is in the process of developing rules that could allow for the lawful marketing of the compound.
In April, FDA sent warning letters to three other CBD companies that it said was making unauthorized claims about the medical benefits of their products. FTC also submitted warning letters to three separate CBD companies for allegedly advertising misleading statements about their products last month.
These letters are examples of the agency’s use of enforcement discretion. Former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, who recently suggested that the federal government should be involved in regulating state marijuana programs, clarified in March that the agency is only going after companies that make especially misleading claims about their products.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who championed a provision of the 2018 Farm Bill federally legalizing hemp and its derivatives, has urged FDA to clear a path for the lawful marketing of CBD products by using enforcement discretion while it develops an interim final rule. A bipartisan group of lawmakers made a similar request in a letter sent to the agency last month.
“The FDA is working quickly to further clarify our regulatory approach for products containing cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds like CBD while using all available resources to monitor the marketplace and protect public health by taking action as needed against companies,” FDA Principal Deputy Commissioner Amy Abernethy said.
“We recognize that there is significant public interest in cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds; however, we must work together to fill in the knowledge gaps about the science, safety and quality of many of these products,” she said. “We are committed to advancing our regulation of these products through an approach that, in line with our mission, prioritizes public health, fosters innovation and promotes consumer confidence.”
Photo courtesy of Kimzy Nanney.
The post Feds Send Warning Letter To Another CBD Company Over Medical Claims appeared first on Marijuana Moment.
Original Article Source: https://www.marijuanamoment.net/feds-send-warning-letter-to-another-cbd-company-over-medical-claims/
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Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) said on Tuesday that claims about the therapeutic potential of marijuana remind him of decades-old tobacco industry advertisements asserting that the product had medical benefits.
In a speech on the Senate floor, Cornyn discussed a hearing that the International Narcotics Control Caucus, which he co-chairs, will hold on Wednesday to explore the public health impacts of cannabis. He said it was especially important to hear from experts about the subject as more states legalize marijuana and members of Congress, as well as Democratic presidential candidates, push to end federal prohibition.
The senator made clear he’s skeptical about marijuana’s health benefits.
“There’s no shortage of people who claim that marijuana has endless health benefits and can help patients struggling from everything from epilepsy to anxiety to cancer treatments,” he said. “This reminds me of some of the advertising we saw from the tobacco industry years ago where they actually claimed public health benefits from smoking tobacco, which we know as a matter of fact were false and that tobacco contains nicotine, an addictive drug, and is implicated with cancers of different kinds.”
“We’re hearing a lot of the same happy talk with regard to marijuana and none of the facts that we need to understand about the public health impact of marijuana use,” he said.
While Cornyn recognized there’s significant support for cannabis reform, he said that ” for the number of voices in support of legalization, there are even more unanswered questions about both the short- and long-term public health effects.”
He expressed concern about increased levels of THC concentration in cannabis products and stated that it’s “true that for some people that marijuana can indeed be addictive.”
“There’s simply a lack of scientific evidence to determine the link between marijuana and various health risks, and that’s something I would think Congress and the American people would want to know before we proceed further down this path,” Cornyn said. “We don’t know enough about how this could impair cognitive function or capacity or increase the risk of mental illness or perhaps serve as a gateway for other drugs that are even more damaging to the health of a young person.”
The senator made similar remarks during a conversation with a former White House drug czar in August. He said it was important to address the public health impacts of cannabis before moving forward with legislation that would protect banks that service marijuana businesses from being penalized by federal regulators.
“With increasing use and a growing number of states giving the green light for marijuana use, we need better answers,” he said.
The surgeon general and the director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, along with several academics, are scheduled to testify at Wednesday’s hearing.
Photo courtesy of C-SPAN.
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A new bill in New Hampshire aimed at increasing the number of dispensaries allowed statewide may improve the financial performance of the state’s four licensed marijuana businesses.
Chart: New Hampshire’s new ‘satellite’ dispensary law aims to boost medical marijuana program is a post from: Marijuana Business Daily: Financial, Legal & Cannabusiness news for cannabis entrepreneurs
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A leading advocacy group that’s dedicated to finding treatment options for Parkinson’s disease is backing three pieces of marijuana research legislation in Congress.
The Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF)—named after the actor, who has Parkinson’s and established the nonprofit—said last week that lifting barriers to cannabis research, including rescheduling the plant under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), is necessary to promote studies verifying marijuana’s potential therapeutic benefit for conditions such as Parkinson’s patients.
“The MJFF supports increased access to cannabis for medical research. Congress has begun to recognize this need, and there are several bills in the U.S. House and Senate designed to remove barriers that impede safe and legal access to cannabis by medical researchers,” the foundation said on its website. “The MJFF public policy team is tracking these bills and working to educate members of Congress and their staff on their importance to the Parkinson’s community.”
MJFF said it’s in favor of three marijuana bills, which would accomplish the following:
—Require the Justice Department to approve additional manufacturers for research-grade cannabis.
—Protect research institutions that conduct studies on marijuana.
—Authorize the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to inform patients about opportunities to participate in federally authorized cannabis studies.
—Require VA to conduct studies into the therapeutic potential of marijuana in the treatment of various conditions that commonly afflict veterans such as chronic pain and post-traumatic stress disorder.
—Reschedule marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule III under the CSA.
—Free up universities to conduct studies on cannabis by removing certain regulatory requirements.
In a letter to the Senate sponsor of that last piece of legislation, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), in June, the foundation stated that marijuana’s current classification under federal law and the inadequate quality of cannabis grown at the only federally authorized manufacturing facility has meant that “researchers do not have the proper materials to conduct the necessary research.”
The foundation noted that it has submitted comments to the Food and Drug Administration arguing in favor of rescheduling in 2018 and 2019. It also applauded the Drug Enforcement Administration for announcing that it would take steps to approve additional federal cannabis farms for research.
“Current policies hinder comprehensive medical research on cannabis, making it difficult to generate the evidence needed for clear recommendations,” Andrew Koemeter-Cox, MJFF’s associate director of research programs, said. “This is especially problematic when some products may be unsafe for human use and have the potential for adverse interactions with other medications.”
Ted Thompson, the nonprofit’s senior vice president of public policy, said that removing barriers to research “is one way in which Congress can help scientific researchers determine what the benefits of medical cannabis might be for Parkinson’s disease.”
“Our role on the public policy team is to work with Congress and the administration to ensure there is access and funding for research and care initiatives that can benefit people living with Parkinson’s and, right now, that includes access to medical cannabis for research,” he said.
via Tumblr Michael J. Fox Parkinson’s Foundation Urges Congress To Pass Three Marijuana Research Bills
Nevada cannabis regulators suspended the license of a Reno cultivator, just days after the beginning of an investigation into the industry by a governor-appointed, multiagency task force. The cultivator, Helio, was notified of the suspension Friday, according to the Reno Gazette Journal. The action comes as a task force has been making unannounced spot inspections of several […]
Original Article Source: https://mjbizdaily.com/nevada-regulators-suspend-reno-marijuana-growers-license/
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A state judge allowed Massachusetts’ four-month ban on the sale of all vaping products to stand as a legal challenge makes its way through the courts. Suffolk Superior Court Judge Douglas Wilkins wrote in a 32-page decision on Monday that lifting the ban as requested by the vaping industry “would contravene the public interest.” Republican […]
Original Article Source: https://mjbizdaily.com/massachusetts-marijuana-tobacco-vaping-ban-stands/
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A top U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) official says that the department expects to release an interim final rule on hemp regulations within “the next couple of weeks.”
During a hearing before the Senate Agriculture Committee on Thursday, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) told USDA Deputy Secretary Stephen Censky that there’s been a “big rise in interest” in hemp among farmers in her state since the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, which federally legalized the crop and its derivatives.
“States are currently working their way through the rulemaking process, but they do need guidance,” she said.
The senator asked if Censky could provide a timeline for the release of federal hemp regulations.
“We would expect to be issuing the interim final rule here within the next couple of weeks,” he said. “We have been in the interagency clearance process now for over 90 days, working with some of our federal colleagues through the [White House Office of Management and Budget] process to get input for there.”
“I think we’re nearing—just about at the end of that process,” he said.
The Justice Department ’s Office of Legal Policy has also been involved in reviewing the proposed regulations, a USDA official said at an event in September.
The department previously indicated that it would release the regulations in August, but that timeline has shifted, with officials recently stating that they’d be issued this fall, prior to the 2020 planting season.
In his opening testimony, Censky discussed the progress USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) has made on hemp.
He said that AMS “has been working aggressively to stand up the Hemp Production Program in advance of the 2020 planting season,” which has “involved soliciting stakeholder feedback, including, but not limited to, an open webinar listening session in March 2019.”
“Many voices were represented during this listening session and the insights offered during this and other stakeholder input were used by AMS to craft an interim final rule,” he said. “Over the last few months, USDA has been working with our Federal partners to ensure the Hemp Production Program does not conflict with existing programs and to ensure the burden on producers and other stakeholders is minimized.”
Two areas of discussion the official noted concern “opportunities for Tribes to participle in hemp production and the effects the regulation will have on the agricultural lending industry.”
“These conversations have been productive and provided an overall improvement to the design of the Hemp Production Program,” he said. “Based on the most recent discussions, many of the initial concerns have been addressed and it has been indicated the rule should be cleared for publication soon. We look forward to having this program available to interested States, Tribes, and producers.”
Photo courtesy of Brendan Cleak.
The post Hemp Regulations Will Be Issued Within Weeks, Top USDA Official Says appeared first on Marijuana Moment.
Original Article Source: https://www.marijuanamoment.net/hemp-regulations-will-be-issued-within-weeks-top-usda-official-says/
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A judge in Montana halted a temporary ban on flavored vaping products, including medical cannabis, which was scheduled to go into effect Oct. 22. Ravalli County District Judge Jennifer Lint signed a temporary restraining order Friday that prohibits Gov. Steve Bullock and state health officials from enforcing emergency rules on flavored vaping products. Lint was […]
Original Article Source: https://mjbizdaily.com/montana-judge-blocks-temporary-ban-of-flavored-marijuana-vapes-e-cigarettes/
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