Coronavirus crisis shows marijuana is ‘essential’; DEA says it’s not responsible for low-quality cannabis; NY gov reiterates he wants legalization
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/ TOP THINGS TO KNOW
The coronavirus crisis has demonstrated more clearly than ever before that marijuana is mainstream as state after state deems legal cannabis access to be “essential” amid general business shutdowns spurred by the COVID19 pandemic.
In a little-noticed provision of new marijuana research rules filed last week, the Drug Enforcement Administration said it is not responsible for damaging cannabis stored in its possession before it is delivered to researchers.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse is asking for public input on developing a standardized dose of THC for marijuana products. The agency is floating 5mg and are asking for comments by May 1.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) reiterated that he wants lawmakers to send him a bill legalizing marijuana despite the need to also focus on a coronavirus response.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture approved hemp plans from Iowa and two Indian tribes.
Washington State Gov. Jay Inslee’s (D) stay-at-home order exempts marijuana businesses as essential, allowing them to stay open amid a broader coronavirus shutdown.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) issued a stay-at-home order deeming medical cannabis businesses—but not recreational marijuana ones—to be essential and exempt from coronavirus-induced closures.
Michigan marijuana businesses will be able to continue curbside sales and home deliveries but cannot perform in-person transactions in stores under a stay-at-home order issued by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D).
Connecticut regulators deemed medical cannabis businesses to be essential and exempt from Gov. Ned Lamont’s (D) general coronavirus mandate to suspend in-person operations.
New Jersey regulators are letting medical cannabis patients pick up medicine at dispensaries’ curbsides and are reducing caregiver registration fees due to the coronavirus outbreak.
New Hampshire regulators are allowing medical cannabis patients to do curbside pickup at dispensaries and are letting doctors issue recommendations via telemedicine in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
Oregon regulators moved to make it easier to obtain a cannabis worker permit amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Washington State regulators are allowing minors under 16 to enter marijuana production and processing businesses with adults under limited circumstances due to school closures.
North Dakota regulators said that processing of medical cannabis applications may be delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Ohio’s attorney general rejected a proposed marijuana legalization ballot measure because advocates failed to turn in the initial minimum number of valid signatures.
Florida’s attorney general said the state Supreme Court should decide the issue of whether a proposed marijuana legalization ballot measure meets legal standards to appear before voters.
An opposition campaign to a proposed Arizona marijuana legalization ballot measure has launched.
Maine regulators are being sued over the state’s marijuana business ownership residency requirements.
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Denver, Colorado’s mayor issued a stay-at-home order that exempts marijuana businesses. An initial version only covered medical cannabis businesses, but it was later expanded.
Honolulu, Hawaii’s coronavirus stay-at-home order exempts medical cannabis businesses.
The Canadian government is being pressed to include the cannabis industry in a coronavirus economic aid package. Meanwhile, Ontario marijuana stores will be able to remain open amid an emergency shutdown of non-essential businesses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
/ SCIENCE & HEALTH
A study “indicated that CBD may exert preventive and protective actions in” Parkinson’s disease.
A review of the long-term effects of psychedelics identified “enduring changes in personality/attitudes, depression, spirituality, anxiety, wellbeing, substance misuse, meditative practices, and mindfulness” and found that “mystical experiences, connectedness, emotional breakthrough, and increased neural entropy were related to these long-term changes in psychological functioning,” while “with proper screening, preparation, supervision, and integration, limited aversive side effects were noted.”
/ ADVOCACY, OPINION & ANALYSIS
NORML issued a reminder that consumers should beware of misinformation claiming that CBD products are effective against coronavirus.
Leafly laid off 91 employees, accounting for nearly 40% of its workforce.
Organigram Holdings Inc. announced that it received approval from Canadian regulators for an expansion but said it expects temporary layoffs due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Charlotte’s Web Holdings, Inc. is acquiring Abacus Health Products, Inc.
CannTrust Holdings Inc. announced that Canadian regulators are delaying inspections of its facilities due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Here’s a look at what is believed to be the first written English description of being high on marijuana.
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Photo courtesy of Chris Wallis // Side Pocket Images.
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