Entries by Marijuana Business Daily

Alcohol, tobacco interests eyeing Michigan marijuana market

By John Schroyer At a time when Michigan’s medical marijuana regulations are being written – and adult-use proponents are finalizing a legalization measure for the 2018 ballot – representatives from the alcohol and tobacco industries have had a seat at the negotiating table. It’s not yet clear how the alcohol and tobacco interests will be […]

PA gets hundreds of applications for medical cannabis licenses

Pennsylvania has received hundreds of applications from entrepreneurs interested in obtaining cultivation and dispensary licenses under the state’s new medical marijuana program. In a live-streamed press conference, state regulators said Wednesday they had received more than 500 packages containing one or more grower or dispensary applications. The winners are expected to be announced by the […]

Canada legalization chief: Let black-market MJ growers join

The chair of the Canadian government’s marijuana legalization task force believes black-market growers should be allowed to participate in the country’s new recreational cannabis industry. Such as move could affect business opportunities. The federal government’s proposal stipulated that newer, smaller cultivators would be given an opportunity to participate in the nation’s new rec industry, although existing […]

Colorado lawmakers pass bill adding PTSD to MMJ conditions list

The Colorado Legislature has approved a bill that would add post-traumatic stress disorder to its list of medical ailments that qualify patients for medical marijuana, a move that could provide a shot in the arm to the state’s MMJ industry. The state Senate signed off on the measure Tuesday, and the bill now heads to […]

What the cannabis industry can learn from the natural products business: Q&A with Loren Israelsen

By Bart Schaneman Loren Israelsen feels the cannabis industry’s pain. For more than three decades, he’s been dealing with regulatory and commercial issues in the global dietary supplement industry, including labeling and being viewed as a fringe business. Israelsen is the president of the United Natural Products Alliance. The Salt Lake City-based trade association represents more […]

Oregon marijuana company fined $5,300 over butane explosion

Oregon regulators fined Higher Level Concentrates $5,300 for workplace safety violations following a butane-extraction explosion last year that landed one man in a Portland burn ward. The Oregonian reported that Oregon OSHA fined the extraction company, which is based in in Astoria, for failure to: Ventilate the building Have an adequate electrical system Obtain city permits […]

Montana close to enacting medical cannabis rules

A bill that would create a seed-to-sale tracking system, licenses, fees and regulations for Montana’s medical marijuana industry is one vote away from moving to the governor. The Montana House gave preliminary approval to a bill to regulate the medical marijuana industry after voters last November approved lifting restrictions that severely restricted sales of MMJ by […]

Ohio issues applications for medical cannabis growers

Prospective medical marijuana growers can start applying for a license in Ohio now that the state has begun issuing applications for one of 24 available MMJ cultivation permits. The Ohio Department of Commerce plans to issue up to 12 licenses for large grows totaling as much as 25,000 square feet of growing space and another dozen for small grows […]

Oregon signals more inspections of marijuana cultivation sites

An adviser to Oregon’s Gov. Kate Brown said state inspections of cannabis cultivation sites will become more frequent now that additional facilities have been licensed. Speaking with local officials in southwestern Oregon, Jeff Rhoades didn’t offer any details about how inspections would be increased, the Grants Pass Daily Courier reported. According to the newspaper, […]

Second New York medical cannabis firm launches home delivery

Vireo Health, one of the five licensed medical marijuana companies in New York, rolled out home delivery for its patients late last week, reportedly the second in the state to do so. Vireo, which first obtained permission from the state in January to deliver medical cannabis instead of requiring patients to pick up purchases at […]

Alaska orders Anchorage marijuana club to shut down

Marijuana businesses in Anchorage, Alaska, have for years now been pushing the envelope of what’s acceptable by state regulators, and recently they got another answer on one thing that’s not: cannabis social clubs. The only club in Anchorage, Pot Luck Events, which has been operational since 2015, was ordered to close by the Alaska Alcohol and […]

Marijuana tech company MJ Freeway nets $3M in financing

A day after winning Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana seed-to-sale tracking contract, MJ Freeway said Friday it has received $3 million in Series B extension financing. The financing – which comes from existing investors Tao Capital Partners, based in San Francisco, and venture capitalist Roger McNamee – brings to $11 million the amount of money Denver-based MJ […]

Oregon vineyard owners sue to halt nearby cannabis cultivation

Oregon vineyard owners in the heart of the state’s wine region filed a lawsuit asking a judge to ban a neighbor from cultivating marijuana, complaining that the smell of cannabis could drift over and taint their grapes. The suit could foreshadow a larger issue: Will expanding cannabis cultivation, particularly in states such as California and Oregon, cause […]

Canadian medical marijuana grower Aphria lands CA$100M

Aphria, one of Canada’s largest licensed medical marijuana producers, announced it has secured 100 million Canadian dollars ($74 million) in financing. The financing will be used mostly to expand Aphria’s production capacity, which “is expected to supply more than 75,000 (kilograms) of high-quality cannabis at one of the lowest costs in the industry,” CEO Vic Neufield […]

3 cannabis biz events named among top growing trade shows

Three marijuana business events have been named among the 50 fastest-growing trade shows in the United States, reflecting the cannabis industry’s rapid expansion and future potential. The Fall Marijuana Business Conference & Expo ranked second nationally for growth in attendance and net square feet of paid exhibit space from 2015 to 2016, according to Trade […]

Week in Review: RI rec push slows, pushback on California cannabis plan & China opportunity

By Omar Sacirbey, John Schroyer and Bart Schaneman Adult-use legislation takes a hit in Rhode Island, California Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal for cannabis regulation faces opposition, and a marijuana-related firm sets up shop in China. Here’s a closer look at some notable developments in the marijuana industry over the past week. Rhode Island rec resistance […]

Florida medical marijuana deal unlikely to allow smokable flower

Florida lawmakers are working out a compromise to implement a voter-approved constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana, and any deal is unlikely to allow smokable MMJ as a form of treatment. Smokable medical cannabis would help attract patients to the program and in turn bolster revenue for the state’s MMJ industry. But Sen. Rob Bradley, an MMJ […]

MJ Freeway wins $10M PA medical cannabis tracking deal

(Note: This story has been updated from an earlier version.) Embattled MJ Freeway received a key vote of confidence Thursday after Pennsylvania awarded the Denver company a $10 million contract to provide a seed-to-sale tracking system to keep tabs on the state’s new medical marijuana program. The five-year contract is a shot in the arm […]

Cannabis banking still unpredictable: Q&A with Colorado Bank Commissioner Chris Myklebust

By John Schroyer Colorado State Bank Commissioner Chris Myklebust flew to Washington DC in March to meet with a group of state bank regulators. He also met with U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, a Colorado Republican, and a staffer for U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter, a Colorado Democrat. He brought up cannabis banking, and was encouraged. Marijuana […]

Oregon OKs bill to protect rec marijuana industry from feds

To protect the state’s recreational marijuana industry from a federal crackdown, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown signed a bill that prevents rec retail businesses from storing private data about customers’ identities or purchases. The new law is designed to shield adult-use marijuana consumers by barring retailers from sharing or keeping their personal data. Oregon marijuana retailers […]

West Virginia governor signs bill legalizing medical cannabis

It’s official: West Virginia has become the 30th state in the nation to legalize medical cannabis, and the first to do so in 2017. Gov. Jim Justice on Wednesday signed Senate Bill 386, the Medical Cannabis Act, and said it was “a monumental day,” MetroNews reported. The legislature approved the bill the first week […]

U.S. Rep Polis predicts medical cannabis safeguard will get OK

Colorado Democratic U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, one of the four founding members of the Cannabis Caucus, said during a panel discussion Tuesday in Denver he believes the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment – which protects medical marijuana businesses from the Department of Justice – will be renewed and remain in federal law. Polis was one of 44 representatives who […]

Las Vegas may loosen MMJ dispensary rules, allow later hours

Concerned they’re losing business to medical marijuana retailers in unincorporated parts of Clark County, city officials in Las Vegas are now eyeballing possible rollbacks to city MMJ rules that may let Sin City dispensaries stay open later and serve more customers. Proposed changes could also give dispensaries more flexibility on what products they can carry, […]

Firm funds $1.85M marijuana research at Ohio University

Ohio-based Black Elk Biotech has awarded Ohio University (OU) a $1.85 million contract to examine therapeutic benefits generated from cannabis and other natural products. Black Elk Biotech is a subsidiary of Black Elk, an Ohio company focused on products and medicines derived from fruits, trees, plants and other vegetation. According to The Post – an independent […]

CA marijuana distributor to launch ‘institute’ serving small growers

Flow Kana, a San Francisco distributor that specializes in craft-grown marijuana, shared more details Tuesday about plans to transform a former Northern California wine estate, saying it will build a “cannabis institute” catering to small-batch  MJ growers. The 80-acre property – the former home of Fetzer Wines – will include testing, processing, manufacturing and retail operations for Flow […]

Regulations finalized for Ohio medical cannabis growers

A panel of Ohio lawmakers signed off on final rules governing the state’s new medical marijuana cultivators, approving 24 licensed sites that will carry hefty fees. The cultivator rules, which also spell out application and license fees for MMJ dispensaries, product processors and testing labs, passed the Ohio legislature’s Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review without objection […]

Hemp providing avenue for marijuana businesses to boost profits, extend brands

By Bart Schaneman Marijuana businesses are increasingly expanding into CBD products derived from hemp, capitalizing on the hemp industry’s growth and less restrictive legal status. The diversification allows cannabis-infused product companies, in particular, to expand their geographic sales reach, bolster profits and boost brand recognition. Hemp-derived products don’t face the same restrictions as those containing […]

Rhode Island governor calls for delay in legalizing rec marijuana

A state that industry watchers have predicted would be among the next to legalize recreational marijuana – Rhode Island – appears to have hit a speed bump when it comes to legalization. Rhode Island’s governor is calling on lawmakers to delay passing legislation that would legalize adult-use cannabis. Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo’s administration sent a letter to […]

U.S. medical cannabis tech company plans to open China office

Net Savings Link Inc. said its cannabis division will open an office in Shanghai, China, next month to expand its medical marijuana technology business into the world’s most populous country. The company, based in Cresco, Pennsylvania, said in a news release it is moving into China because it sees a sizable opportunity there. China is the world’s […]

Pushback on California proposal to merge rec, medical MJ systems

A series of proposals from California Gov. Jerry Brown to merge regulations for medical and recreational marijuana have come under fire from some state lawmakers and political stakeholders, throwing the future of the regulatory changes into uncertainty. Some in Sacramento are now saying Brown’s proposals – which are attached to a budget trailer bill – may […]

Franwell wins Michigan cannabis tracking deal worth nearly $450K

Florida-based Franwell, which built Colorado’s cannabis tracking system, has been awarded a state contract from Michigan worth nearly $450,000 to implement a similar inventory tracking program for the state’s medical marijuana program. The Michigan deal is in keeping with new regulations that will oversee a web of state-licensed MMJ businesses. The contract, according to Crain’s Detroit […]

Canada provincial leaders concerned over rec MJ timeline

Canadian provincial leaders are raising questions over whether they will be ready when Canada’s recreational marijuana market is set to go online in July 2018. That could slow the adult-use industry’s rollout across Canada, making it more difficult for entrepreneurs hoping to cash in on the federal government’s legalization program. Under legalization legislation introduced Thursday, the […]

North Dakota lawmakers OK medical marijuana industry rules

North Dakota’s legislature has passed a bill establishing a regulatory structure for the state’s upcoming medical cannabis industry. The measure – which now goes to the governor, who said he would sign the bill – includes several business-friendly provisions. Dispensaries, for instance, will be able to sell smokable MMJ, which will help attract patients to the program […]

Week in Review: 4 takeaways from Canada’s recreational marijuana plan

By Omar Sacirbey The biggest marijuana business development this week – and quite possibly this year – originated north of the border. On Thursday, the Canadian government introduced landmark legislation to legalize recreational marijuana, giving entrepreneurs worldwide a look at how the country could regulate the first adult-use cannabis market in a G-7 nation. Among […]

Colorado lawmakers abandon plans to regulate cannabis clubs

Colorado lawmakers backed off plans to regulate marijuana clubs, saying the state would invite a federal crackdown by approving Amsterdam-style cannabis clubs. The state House voted Thursday to amend a bill that would have set rules for how private marijuana clubs could work. It was a dramatic reversal. Bring-your-own-MJ clubs had bipartisan support in the Colorado Legislature, […]

MD’s failed marijuana diversity bill spurs call for special session

Black lawmakers in Maryland are calling for a special session of the legislature after the failure of a bill designed to mandate racial diversity in the ownership of the businesses that will participate in the state’s new medical marijuana industry. The legislation would have added seven more licenses to cultivate cannabis, on top of the 15 […]

Hawaii medical cannabis program lagging despite patient surge

Hawaii’s medical marijuana patient counts are increasing rapidly, but the sheer numbers, problems with seed-to-sale tracking software and a dearth of licensed testing labs are undermining the program’s rollout and costing at least one MMJ business money. Though regulators say they are receiving about 100 applications per day, the state’s MMJ businesses aren’t reaping any benefits, […]

Canadian government introduces bill legalizing rec marijuana

Canada’s government on Thursday introduced highly anticipated legislation in the House of Commons to legalize recreational marijuana, proposing that existing licensed medical cannabis producers get the first crack at business licenses. The legislation sets July 1, 2018, as the target date for legalization, The Globe and Mail reported. At that time, adults 18 or older would be […]

Three cannabis companies raise over $7 million

It’s money week in the cannabis industry: Three Colorado-based ancillary marijuana companies announced multimillion-dollar capital raises totaling $7.35 million. BDS Analytics on Monday revealed it had successfully completed a $2.1 million round of fundraising from investors, BizWest reported. The capital influx will be spent on expanding the data analytics firm’s sales and marketing departments. […]

Cannabis investment climate warming, but big investors not writing checks

By Omar Sacirbey Investor interest in cannabis businesses is growing since the 2016 election, a development that ultimately could lead to more dollars flowing to cash-squeezed marijuana companies. The growing interest comes after seven states legalized medical or recreational marijuana last November, providing more opportunities for investors. New investors already are jumping in. Last week, […]

Medical cannabis delivery launches in San Jose, CA, after ban lifted

Seeking to capitalize on a change in local law, a cannabis delivery company launched an on-demand service to legally bring medical marijuana to patients’ homes in San Jose, California. San Francisco-based Eaze said that MMJ patients with valid physicians recommendations can use the company’s EazeMD smartphone app to order medical cannabis, The Mercury News reported. The […]

Arkansas medical cannabis officials send rules to lawmakers for OK

The Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission (AMMC) finalized rules about who can cultivate and sell medical cannabis for a market where sales could begin before the end of the year. The rules now head to state lawmakers who must sign off before they can take effect, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported. An attorney for the Arkansas Department of […]

New Mexico dispensary stays open despite State Fair violation

A New Mexico judge has issued a ruling that prohibits the state health department from imposing a penalty against a medical marijuana dispensary for displaying a cannabis plant at last summer’s State Fair. The Santa Fe New Mexican reported that Judge David Thomson ruled that requiring New Mexico Top Organics-Ultra Health to close for five days was […]

Does vape lawsuit foreshadow litigious future for cannabis industry?

By John Schroyer A turf war over Arizona’s medical cannabis vaporizer market has spilled into the courts, with one multistate marijuana company suing another over an alleged smear campaign. While the case itself may not be a particular milestone, it’s another hallmark of the industry’s emergence into an atmosphere where high-stakes litigation is commonplace. In […]

Marijuana Business Daily joins Associated Press

Marijuana Business Daily has become a member of the Associated Press, giving the cannabis-focused news publication access to MJ-related stories from around the world. MJBizDaily will incorporate cannabis business coverage from the AP’s staff as well as more than 6,000 newspapers and TV and radio stations worldwide. The AP, founded in 1846, has correspondents and photojournalists in more […]

Colorado cannabis cultivation curbs may benefit legal MJ firms

Colorado lawmakers have passed two measures they believe will curb illicit marijuana cultivation and potentially send more consumers to legal cannabis retailers. The state Senate unanimously passed a bill Monday prohibiting people in co-ops from growing recreational cannabis for others, the Associated Press reported. The House already had passed the legislation. The bill now goes […]

Washington state’s cannabis tracking contract up for bid

By Bart Schaneman Washington state regulators have begun accepting bids for a new seed-to-sale tracking system to keep tabs on marijuana commerce, a deal with an initial value of about $3 million. The competition likely will be fierce, given that the contract involves one of the nation’s largest cannabis markets. But businesses won’t be squaring off against the […]

Ohio to accept medical cannabis grower applications in June

Ohio regulators will begin taking applications for its 24 available cultivation licenses in June and review them in July. According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, winning applicants will have nine months to meet the program’s requirements. It’s not clear when regulators will choose the winning applicants. The Ohio Department of Commerce is expected to release […]

Report: Canadian government to offer rec marijuana bill Thursday

Canada’s federal government is expected Thursday to introduce widely anticipated legislation to legalize recreational cannabis. According to The Globe and Mail, the legislation is expected to require adult-use cannabis to be offered in plain packaging, more like tobacco products versus alcohol. A government official told the newspaper a “big gap” exists between the government’s view […]

Arkansas moves from lottery to merit-based MMJ licensing system

The Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission has had a change of heart. Instead of picking MMJ business winners and losers by random through a lottery, the commission will instead use a merit-based scoring system to award dispensary and cultivation permits. The change was made to a draft regulation after pushback from stakeholders at a public hearing, […]