Weekly Weed Report (04-19-22)

Welcome to my latest video presentation about news in the cannabis and psychedelics industries. Below are edited excerpts.


Marijuana adherents recognize April 20 (or 420) as an international holiday for cannabis culture.

Marijuana is a mainstream business nowadays, but the April 20 holiday also features a counter-cultural aspect, whereby marijuana users protest in civil disobedience by gathering in public to light up at 4:20 p.m., even if they’re located in places where weed is illegal.

Also of note on the calendar: April 19 is the international holiday for psychedelics known as “Bicycle Day,” marking the day in 1943 when Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann first ingested lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), prior to leaving his Sandoz lab for a hallucinogenic ride on his bicycle. Hofmann is credited as the discoverer of LSD and the first person who tripped on it.

Now’s an opportune time to see what’s going on in the world of weed and psychedelics.

The federal government. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) told Congress last week in a new report that as state-wide legalization picks up steam and greater amounts of marijuana is produced domestically in the U.S., illicit cannabis trafficking from Mexico is on the decline.

The DEA stated: “Mexican marijuana has largely been supplanted by domestic-produced marijuana,” even though that country “remains the most significant foreign source for marijuana.”

“Marijuana remains illegal under federal law and is the most commonly used illicit drug in the United States,” the agency said. “But the national landscape continues to evolve as states enact voter referenda and legislation regarding the possession, use, and cultivation of marijuana and its associated products.”

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has stepped up in recent days its issuance of warning letters to companies illegally selling unapproved cannabidiol (CBD) products that claim to prevent, diagnose, mitigate, treat or cure various diseases, in violation of the U.S. Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic (FD&C) Act.

In some cases, there were further violations because CBD was added to food, and some of the products were illegally marketed as “dietary supplements.”

Congress. Under newly proposed federal legislation, the punishment for military service members who use or possess marijuana could not exceed penalties for being drunk or incapacitated on duty.

Filed last week in the U.S. House, the Restoring Equity For Offenses Related to Marijuana (REFORM) Act would amend the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) to align the rules for cannabis with alcohol.

The bill’s language states that the UCMJ penalty for “wrongful use of marijuana” shall not exceed that for being “drunk on duty” under existing statute. In addition, the penalty for “wrongful possession of marijuana” couldn’t exceed that for “incapacitation for duty from drunkenness or drug use.”

As it stands, the punishment for wrongful possession of up to 30 grams of cannabis carries a maximum penalty of “dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for two years.” Possession of more than 30 grams can escalate that maximum confinement to five years.

By contrast, if a person’s use of alcohol renders them incapacitated for duty, they can face three months of confinement, or forfeiture of two-thirds of their pay every month for three months. Being drunk on duty is dealt with more severely, incurring a maximum penalty of a bad conduct discharge, forfeiture of allowances and pay, and confinement of up to nine months.

Also pending in the House and Senate is the Veterans Medical Marijuana Safe Harbor Act, a bill that would make it legal under federal law for military veterans to use, possess, or transport medical marijuana in state-legal systems.

The Act also would allow Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) doctors to issue medical cannabis recommendations to their patients.

The bill requires the VA to report on the effects of medical marijuana on veterans in pain; and the relationship between state-approved medical marijuana treatment programs, program access, and opioid abuse reduction.

Massachusetts. The Bay Staters for National Medicine last week officially launched its signature gathering campaign to put psychedelics decriminalization before Worcester, MA voters. Separately, pro-psychedelics activists are pushing an effort to have Massachusetts residents compel state lawmakers to file legislation to decriminalize certain psychedelics.

New Jersey. The governor of New Jersey last week announced that adults 21 years and older will be able to buy marijuana from select dispensaries starting on April 21, the day after the 4/20 marijuana holiday.

Gov. Phil Murphy (D) trumpeted the long-anticipated first round of adult-use retailer approvals from the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission, calling the move a “historic step in our work to create a new cannabis industry.”

As marijuana becomes increasingly legal in America and other countries, the recreational and medical uses of this apparent wonder herb represent a huge investment opportunity.

The fact that marijuana has its own annual international holiday should tell you that the “green rush” is real. For our report on the best marijuana stocks to buy now, click here.

John Persinos is the editor-in-chief of Marijuana Investing Daily.

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