By Steve Elliott
It's not easy being green, at least if you're trying to remember exactly how much cannabis is in that infused edible product in your hand. Now a New York-based company is making that easier with an all-natural frosting label that goes directly on the product, instead of just on the packaging.
According to CannaBadge CEO and founder Carolyn Sevos, her company invented the edible labels for cannabis cakes, cookies, brownies and cupcakes. The labels are customizable, and can feature logos, warning information, serving suggestions, and even a QR Code.
"Putting a label on the product instead of just on a bag or wrap is the smart and responsible method of meeting child safety and packaging regulations," Sevos said. "An edible label enhances brand identity and customer loyalty, and protects manufacturers and dispensary owners from potential liability when accidental or over ingestion occurs when a product becomes separated from its packaging.
People who would be at risk for accidental ingestion now have an extra level of protection with CannaBadge, according to Sevos. Brands can achieve more immediate product identification, and dosage awareness can no longer be easily ignored.
"Just as importantly, if you've forgotten exactly what it is you're holding in your hand, CannaBadge is there to remind and help you," Sevos said. Clearly, this lady understands the challenges facing medical marijuana patients and recreational users.
Citizens for a Safer Maine on Friday announced it will not appeal a judge’s decision to allow the York Board of Selectmen to prevent a vote on a ballot measure that would make marijuana legal for adults.
“We’re confident an appeal would be successful, but at this point we cannot afford to continue playing this game with the selectmen,” said David Boyer, Maine political director for the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), which supported the measure. “We know there is support for ending marijuana prohibition in York, and we’re going to focus our resources on giving them a chance to vote on it in 2016 with a statewide ballot initiative.
“It’s unfortunate that three out of the five selectmen have needlessly and very likely illegally prevented their constituents from voting on this measure,” Boyer said. “It’s a disservice to the voters who elected them, and they’ll have to live with that.”
Citizens for a Safer Maine initially submitted more than 200 signatures of registered York voters to place a measure in front of the York Board of Selectmen in July. The board voted 3-2 against putting the measure on the ballot and, based on local initiative rules, provided the group with 30 days to collect an additional 641 signatures.
Citizens for a Safer Maine submitted nearly 1,000 signatures in August 27, but the Board of Selectmen again voted 3-2 against placing the measure on the ballot. In September, Superior Court Judge Paul Fritzche did not grant an injunction requested by the group to place the initiative on the November ballot.
By Steve Elliott
The Basque Parliament on Wednesday urged the Basque Government to legalize and regulate the activity of cannabis clubs, and give legal support to marijuana cultivation for club members' collective consumption.
The Basque Chamber is concluding two years of work on a study of the clubs with adoption of a recommended solution towards regulating them. The recommendations approved "will place Basque Country at the head of the regulation of these places," the group said.
The political parties PNV (Basque Nationalist Party), EH BILDU (Basque Country United) and PSE-EE (Socialist Party of the Basque Country) have all advocated taking steps towards non-confrontational legal existence for the cannabis clubs, and have urged the Basque Government to devise a system which offers regulation, legal guarantees and security for the clubs.
These groups said that until there is such governmental regulation, cannabis clubs should establish their own self-regulation and standards of good practice. Also, it is expected that medicinal and therapeutic uses of cannabis will be excluded from the regulations governing the clubs.
By Steve Elliott
A new law being considered in Morocco that would legalize marijuana cultivation for medical and industrial uses, finally bringing the North African Islamic nation's thriving hashish industry into the open.
The proposal, however, faces stiff opposition in this conservative nation, despite a centuries-old tradition of growing cannabis in the north, where the Rif Mountains have long been a center of hash production, reports Paul Schemm of the Associated Press.
Some farmers like Abdelkhalek Benabdallah openly grow marijuana, despite its illegal status. "We are regularly subject to blackmail by the gendarmes," he said as he prepared his September harvest.
The new law could alleviate widespread poverty and unrest; suspicious farmers, accustomed to an adversarial relationship with government authorities, don't believe the government will do anything to help them. The farmers fear that legalization might lower the already cheap price of $8 a kilogram they receive for their product.
"If legalization happened for all of Morocco, we could never compete with the other farmers that have lots of land and the price of cannabis wouldn't be any different from that of carrots," said Mohammed Benabdallah, an activist in the village of Oued Abdel Ghaya.
By Steve Elliott
Legal Pomegranate marijuana-infused soda has more bang for the buck than its manufacturers and distributors realized. The drink has been removed from three Washington marijuana stores after bottles started exploding on the shelves.
Top Shelf Cannabis in Bellingham took delivery of 330 bottles of the soda on September 28; employees said they were excited to promote it to their customers, reports Matt Markovich at KOMO News. They sold 10 bottles of the soda, made by Mirth Provisions of Longview, on the first day.
But when employees opened up the following day, they found broken bottles and shards of glass throughout the store. During the night, the bottles had begun to explode. The employees said they didn't realize just how dangerous was the situation until they saw and heard bottles randomly blow up.
"It sounded like a shotgun going off," said Top Shelf Cannabis manager Zach Henifin. "You can actually feel it; it was that explosive."
Henifin donned a face shield and protective garb and placed cartons of the unexploded soda in a dumpster-sized steel box outside the store. The "pot pop" continued to explode, inside the steel container, for the next 10 days.
"It's almost like a bomb box because they randomly go off during the day," Henifin said.
By Steve Elliott
Rick Steves, the mild-mannered travel guru who was a key supporter of Washington state's flawed but successful marijuana legalization initiative in 2012, arrived in Oregon on Tuesday to kick off a nine-city tour promoting Measure 91, a measure on November's general election ballot which would legalize cannabis in Oregon.
"Marijuana is a drug," wrote Steves, a NORML board member who is seemingly eager to court the anti-pot crowd. "It's not good for you. It can be addictive. But marijuana is here to stay. No amount of wishing will bring us a utopian 'drug-free society.'"
Steves explains that owning his own business has given him the freedom to express his personal views about marijuana without fear of being fired.
"When it comes to America's prohibition on marijuana, I can consider lessons learned from my travels and say what I really believe when I'm back home," Steves said.
The travel writer last year was named one of the 50 most influential consumers by the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP).
By Steve Elliott
At least 150 members of the Mount Calvary Christian Center -- who had initially welcomed the presence of a new business next door -- on Sunday held a protest shouting "shut it down" in front of a new retail marijuana store in Seattle.
The primarily black church had been happy to see once-rampant crime dwindle while new businesses open, said former associate pastor Wayne Perryman, but members realized just two weeks ago that the store involved was Uncle Ike's Pot Shop, reports Alexa Vaughn at The Seattle Times.
The store opened last Tuesday just a few feet from the south wall of the church, and conducts business during the church's services.
"We're talking to youth about how it's not OK to smoke pot, and outside, we've got this shop making a statement that opposes what we're teaching," said Perryman, who seems to have a little to learn regarding diversity and free speech.
While Washington state's marijuana laws prohibit pot shops from opening with 1,000 feet of elementary or secondary schools, playgrounds, recreation centers, child-care centers, public parks, transit centers, libraries or arcades that allow minors, it does not prevent them from opening next to churches.
For anyone considering going into business in the legal cannabis industry, a new free tool has arrived to the Google Play marketplace designed to make it easier to keep informed about industry news and developments. Ganjapreneur, a cannabis industry business news and culture website, has recently launched a mobile app designed to keep aspiring "ganjapreneurs," or marijuana entrepreneurs, up to date about the latest headlines and happenings that are relevant to the growth of the industry.
The app is broken down into several sections, including a news feed with categories such as "Business" and "Politics," a job feed which aggregates employment opportunities from several online cannabis industry job boards on a daily basis, and a section that features interviews with prominent business owners and investors who are already operational with their endeavors in the marijuana industry. While cannabis enthusiasts who use Android devices may download the app in its current form, iPhone users will have a similar opportunity in the near future: Ganjapreneur has put up a notification that the app will also soon be available in the Apple App Store.
By Steve Elliott
It's been almost two years since Washington's voters legalized marijuana, albeit in a limited way, through approving I-502, and next week a Seattle-based company will begin selling cannabis infused edibles to licensed retailers.
Db3 Inc. passed the Washington State Liquor Control Board's Infused Edible Operation Inspection, reports Alex Rozier at KING 5 News, and became the first company licensed to provide infused edibles in the state. The company's warehouse is located on the 2400 block of Airport Way South in SODO.
The cannabis-infused products will be marketed under the brand name Zoots; Db3 has a two-tier license that allows them to both grow and process marijuana, manufacturing the edibles.
The company says it will offer seven different products, with more added as time goes by. Some of the initial offerings will be single shots, drink additives, chews, bites and melts.
The single shot energy drinks will contain 5, 10, and 30 milligrams of THC (one wonders why a more substantial dose isn't included, but perhaps they hope to sell several of the 30-mg size to those who have a higher tolerance). The bites will be infused with 5 or 10 milligrams of THC.
For more information on Db3, visit www.zootology.com.
By Steve Elliott
About four months after planting, Colorado's first modern legal outdoor marijuana crop is reaching maturity.
Much of the legal marijuana sold in the state is grown indoors under lights, but the niche occupied by outdoor sun-grown marijuana seems secure; some consumers prefer organic, outdoor cannabis. Outdoor growers usually can only harvest one crop a year, compared to three or four harvests indoors under lights, but outdoor plants typically have a higher yield.
Each plant in Colorado, even outdoors, is tagged with an RFID chip, allowing growers and state regulators to track its path from seed to sale, reports Live Trading News. The plants are weighed after being cut down, again after being trimmed, and again when packaged for sale.
Ryan Griego owns one of the largest outdoor grows in the state, based on a 40-acre compound patrolled by guards and watched by wireless security cameras, reports Trevor Hughes of USA Today. Each three-foot, bushy plant is worth $4,000 to $6,000, depending on yield.
Griego's 12-man crew will be harvesting at least $4 million worth of marijuana, and he's just one of hundreds of licensed growers across the state. He owns two marijuana stores, operating under the Cannasseur name, selling both recreational and medical marijuana in Colorado Springs and Pueblo.
By Steve Elliott
With licensed producers of marijuana bringing in autumn's outdoor harvest, retailers who own the recreational cannabis stores created by limited legalization measure I-502 are hoping to lower prices enough to diminish the black market -- which was one of the main justifications for the law passed by state voters two years ago.
But the most that store owners like Mary Van de Graaf, owner of Mill Creek A, one of two licensed marijuana shops in Union Gap, can hope for is making a bit of a dent. "We'll slow it down, yeah,"
Van de Graaf said, reports Ross Courtney of the Yakima Herald-Republic.
So far, even I-502 store owners like Van de Graaf have to admit that legalizing recreational marijuana has done almost nothing to combat black market street sales, where dealers don't pay taxes or check the ages of their customers.
Washington's brand of limited "legalization" apparently hasn't yet made any dent at all in illegal grows. In fact, there's an increase this year in illegal grows on tribal lands, public lands and in back yards, according to Jodie Underwood, a spokeswoman for the federal Drug Enforcement Administration's regional office in Seattle.
On Monday, law enforcement confiscated 20 pounds of processed marijuana and 43 plants in Zillah, Washington; police arrested two men the same day for stealing medical marijuana from a home in Selah.
By Steve Elliott
A criminal defense lawyer practicing in the Denver area who opposes Colorado's marijuana DUI law has been voted the state's best DUI attorney for 2014 by Law Week Colorado, the State Bar's official journal of record.
Jay Tiftickjian was honored for the third year in a row by Law Week, and the second for being voted Best DUI Lawyer by his peers.
Tiftickjian practices with three other attorneys in Tiftickjian Law Firm, P.C., which takes cases from across Colorado. He explained that the award was the result of a team effort made by the whole firm.
The Denver-based attorney said the award is particularly meaningful because the honor comes by way of peer recognition -- votes are collected from Colorado's attorneys and judges, including prosecutors.
"Every citizen is entitled to a full, fair, and aggressive defense under our system of justice," Tiftickjian said. "Our clients aren't criminals who've set out to harm others, they are regular folks who may have made a poor decision."
Oregon's Measure 91 campaign to regulate, legalize and tax marijuana officially launched its $2 million plus advertising blitz, debuting a retired law enforcement officer in the TV spot.
The new ad -- which you can see at the bottom of this story -- hit the airwaves Wednesday morning and is running on a wide range of broadcast and cable networks, including the newscasts of KGW, KATU, KOIN, KPTV, KEZI, KVAL and KMTR.
"It's About Time" features Pete Tutmark, a longtime Oregonian who has spent 33 years in law enforcement, including many years as patrol sergeant, sheriff's deputy and the supervisor of a K9 unit. The 57-year-old father of two and grandfather of three lives in Canby, Ore.
"Last year in Oregon, there were 13,000 citations and arrests for marijuana," Tutmark says in the ad. "That takes time, time better spent solving murders, rape cases, finding missing children. The system's broken. Measure 91 regulates marijuana for adults so police have time to fight serious, violent and unsolved crimes."
Tutmark joins high-profile law enforcement leaders in Oregon who have endorsed the Yes on 91 campaign, including retired chief federal prosecutor Kris Olson and retired Oregon Supreme Court Justice Bill Riggs.
A newly released 45-second motion graphic shows why it's time to regulate, legalize and tax marijuana in Oregon. You might recognize the narrator's voice from radio and telelvision.
Rick Steves, travel guru, narrates this animated video that explains how our current marijuana policies are failing us. Steves is launching a six-day, 11-city tour around Oregon in support of Measure 91.
Oregon's Measure 91 would create a regulated system that would refocus police time on serious crimes, hobble the black market cartels, and direct millions of dollars to education, drug treatment and prevention, and law enforcement.
Learn more at www.VoteYESon91.com .
420careers.com, a marijuana industry job listing site, on Monday reported that the swiftly developing cannabis industry is generating an extraordinary and historic amount of jobs throughout the United States and Canada.
“The marijuana industry is producing more new jobs than many other industries in the United States,” said Colby Ayres, director of marketing at 420careers.com. "Each state that passes a medical or recreational marijuana law usually generates hundreds, if not thousands, of new jobs.
"Colorado currently has over 10,000 jobs associated with the marijuana industry and Washington state is quickly creating hordes of new jobs since legalizing marijuana in July," Ayres said.
Twenty-two states permit medical marijuana and two states (Colorado and Washington) permit recreational marijuana for adult use. Nearly a dozen other states have medical marijuana legislation initiatives and an estimated five states will vote to legalize marijuana for adult recreational use by 2016.
It has been predicted that over a dozen more states are likely to legalize recreational marijuana for adult use by 2018, which would potentially grow upwards of a $10 billion industry in the United States.
Some of more popular marijuana jobs currently offered on 420careers.com are: budtenders (dispensary patient consultants), cultivation experts, dispensary managers, writers, sales positions, delivery drivers, security staff, inventory staff, and various administrative and business development positions.