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Business & Profession Business, Legislation & policy

The Month In... Business and Regulation

The US edges closer to cannabis drug reform

  • Legislation to legalize cannabis on a federal level (The MORE Act) and remove barriers to medical research (the Medical Marijuana Research Act) was passed by the US House of Representatives but have yet to be taken up by the Republican-controlled senate. 
  • Meanwhile, the Senate passed its own bill to make it easier to do research on cannabis.
  • The DEA finalized a rule change that should allow more cultivators to produce cannabis for research purposes (though many remain skeptical). 
  • US Senator introduces the HEMP Act to raise the allowable THC level in hemp to 1%.

Free at last

North America’s longest serving non-violent cannabis offender, Richard DeLisi, walked free from a Florida prison on December 8. Seventy-one year old DeLisi has served 31 years of a 90-year sentence for trafficking cannabis.

Thank EU

To the relief of CBD companies, the European Commission reversed its decision to treat CBD as a narcotic.

Brexit side effects

Brexit trade rules stopped supply of medical cannabis oils to the UK, leading to fears for children with epilepsy who rely on specific formulations.

Regulatory action

  • Washington testing lab Praxis had its license suspended after officials found that results were being falsified to inflate THC results.
  • Oregon officials issued a voluntary recall of a cannabis vape product after lung-damaging squalene and squalane were detected. 
  • Oregon also recalled extracts and pre-rolls that were sold despite failing test for insecticide abamectin – the lab involved, Ecotest, had its license suspended back in September.

Love and war in business

  • Canadian firms Aphira and Tilray merged to create the “largest global cannabis company.”
  • Canadian cannabis company Canopy Growth filed an intellectual property lawsuit against UK pharmaceutical firm GW Pharma. Canopy claims that GW is using a specific extraction method patented by Canopy.

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About the Author

Charlotte Barker

Associate Content Director

After studying biology at Imperial College London, I got my start in biomedical publishing as a commissioning editor for healthcare journals, and I’ve spent my career covering everything from early-stage research to clinical medicine. Attracted by the creativity, talent and passion of the team, I joined Texere Publishing in 2014, where I’m now Associate Content Director and Editor of The Cannabis Scientist.

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