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“I was struggling a lot with my (…) inability to have penetrative sex as a straight woman,” explains Lara Parker, as she discusses her experience with endometriosis. Lara now relies solely on cannabis for pain management. “Marijuana is my medicine, full stop. I really can’t imagine my life without it, and I don’t want to,” she says. “Imagining a life without cannabis gives me great anxiety. I wouldn’t be able to have much of a…

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Maine’s recreational cannabis industry shifted into a new gear on Thursday. The state’s Office of Marijuana Policy (OMP) opened up its application process for adult use cannabis sales licenses, and also started accepting applications for the cultivation and manufacture of marijuana.

Applicants have started tearing through the paperwork in the hopes of being among the first applicants. Some of these would-be entrepreneurs have been waiting for years for the chance to start in on bureaucratic process. Further encouraging applicants’ quickness is the fact that business licenses will be awarded on a limited basis in some cities.

Maine’s voters opted for cannabis legalization back in 2016, but former Governor Paul LePage blocked the bill that would officially regulate marijuana, citing Maine’s high number of deaths from opiate addiction. It wasn’t until June 2019 that current Governor Janet Mills finally signed cannabis regulations into effect.

In April of 2019, the state made public its cannabis business guidelines. The OMP, which is part of Maine’s Department of Administrative and Financial Services, had already started accepting marijuana testing facility applications November 18.

Other Post-Legalization Issues Examined

Maine’s laws provide no framework for expungement of past cannabis-related crimes, necessitating that lawmakers propose stand-alone bills to

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Toronto-based Supreme Cannabis to operate 107,000 square-foot processing facility. A large cannabis processing plant capable of filling thousands of packages per day is coming to Kitchener. Toronto-based Supreme Cannabis Company Inc. has leased 100 Hollinger Cres. in the Bridgeport area and spent the past few months upgrading the facility. They recently completed Phase 1 of the three-phase retrofit, and have applied to Health Canada for a cannabis processing license. Supreme Cannabis intends to use the…

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Convenient payment options? Appealing products? Country-wide shipping? That’s illegal, baby. Canada’s federal police want people to know that black market weed is bad, so they launched a handy little campaign warning of the perils of illicit dispensaries. The only problem is, most of the telltale signs they listed sound pretty great. In a tweet, the RCMP cautioned, “This holiday season, know the signs of an illegal online cannabis retailer. If you buy cannabis online, buy…

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The legal cannabis industry is still taking shape and evolving. In many ways, the industry is figuring itself out as it goes. And that leaves the door open for people to enter the space and do all sorts of creative or unexpected things.

One of the most recent examples of this is a cannabis auction taking place this weekend in New York City. The event, billed as The Cannabis Auction Exchange, will focus exclusively on selling CBD strains and products.

A Groundbreaking Cannabis Event

The CBD-oriented event will take place December 7 at the Aloft Hotel at New York City’s LaGuardia Airport. Prior to the event, people interested in attending and bidding on products can register online at the auction’s official website.

Attendees can also register at the door, beginning at 8:00 a.m. The auction is scheduled to begin around 10:00 a.m. and organizers expect it to go until roughly 5:00 p.m.

The auction will bring together hemp farmers from around the country and put them in front of potential buyers. Auction organizers expect to see massive quantities of product being sold at the event.

Estimates on what types and amounts of product will be available include:

Nearly 20,000 pounds

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Health officials in Massachusetts revealed this week that six patients have suffered illnesses likely linked to marijuana vaping products purchased from dispensaries. Those reports, which are unconfirmed, are alarming, given that they stem from regulated products, and not those purchased from the illicit market. 

The reported illnesses also come a week before Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker is slated to lift a temporary ban on all vaping products. Baker issued an emergency order banning the products back in September amid a nationwide epidemic that saw dozens of individuals die and thousands more fall seriously ill from vaping. Three vaping-related fatalities have occurred in Massachusetts. 

“One of the experts said that, ‘We don’t have time to wait. People are getting sick and the time to act is now.’ I couldn’t agree more,” Baker said at the time.

The temporary ban is set to be lifted on December 11, although it will come with new restrictions governing the sale of e-cigarettes and other vaping products that were etched out in legislation signed by Baker. The governor’s administration also said that the state Department of Health will present new regulations surrounding the sale of vaping products on the same date. 

According to the state

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An activist group in North Dakota has submitted language for an initiative petition that would legalize recreational marijuana in the state. The group, Legalize ND, turned in the required paperwork for the legalization initiative to the office of the secretary of state on Thursday.

If the initiative succeeds at the ballot box, the recreational use of cannabis by adults 21 and older would be legalized. The law would permit adults to possess and transport up to 2 ounces of prepared cannabis. Home cultivation of cannabis would not be legalized.

The measure would also establish a three-member marijuana control commission responsible for licensing cannabis businesses in the state. The initiative would grant local governments the power to regulate the location and operation of marijuana businesses in their jurisdictions.

A 10% excise tax on cannabis products would be used to fund regulation of the industry, with any leftover revenues being divided among six state budget funds. Purchases of recreational marijuana would also be subject to sales tax.

Eliminating Collateral Damage

David Owen, the chairman of Legalize ND, said in a radio interview on Wednesday that the reform of cannabis laws would eliminate the collateral damage of minor marijuana offenses. The initiative would

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Cannabis advocate-turned small town politician Jamie Cooper fought a hard race for a seat on her hometown of Grand Haven’s City Council. Her progressive platform included education on cannabis in Michigan’s emerging market, and her perspective as a woman, wife, mother, and businesswoman, for positive change in her community. And, though she lost out to male counterparts with a 22.8 percent margin, she shook the tree by stepping up and advocating for cannabis.

Cooper, who holds a BS in Mass Communication from West Texas A&M University, initially worked as a television news producer. She also worked in travel and tourism, hoping to add to the county’s tourism dollars. With experience in marketing, sales, and business coaching, she founded and is CEO of Cannabiz Connection, a networking organization in the cannabis space that holds Chamber of Commerce-type mixers for the industry throughout the state. She’s also the Publisher of Detroit’s Sensi Magazine, a national cannabis publication.

Knocking on doors with her young son, Cooper challenged Michigan’s most conservative region, challenging Ottawa County voters face-to-face, discussing community concerns, with a bonus of being fully educated on the fastest growing, multi-billion dollar industry in the country—cannabis.

After the race ended, a spot was

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Chicago’s Black aldermen have raised concern over racial issues in Illinois’ nascent recreational cannabis industry. A fraught city council meeting took place Wednesday, on the heels of the news that lawmakers in the nearby town of Evanston have linked cannabis tax revenue to reparations for the Black community. That move was seen as a creative tactic for ensuring that the state’s goals of social equity are met. At the Chicago meeting, local leaders expressed their displeasure that every recreational dispensary that has been approved by the government is run by a white man. 

Illinois’ first recreational cannabis stores are set to open their doors on January 1st. In Chicago, the first round of 11 business licenses went to pre-existing medical cannabis companies. 

West Loop alderman Walter Burnett Jr. does not see that as an appropriate outcome for an industry that, previously to legalization, saw a highly disproportionate number of people of color policed and incarcerated for their involvement in the marijuana business. In fact, he’s so firm on this point that he’s willing to flex his policy strength to rectify the situation. 

“If they don’t have an African-American partner don’t waste your time coming to see me, because I don’t

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