New poll says Canadians support the idea of independent pot retailers; few support liquor store sales of marijuana
So where are we going to buy these cannabis products? Right now, the only legal way to acquire cannabis products is by mail from a licensed producer. Purchasers need a prescription. But there’s a booming market — grey at best, black at worst — of what are called pot dispensaries, storefront operations where you can walk in and — so long as you’ve got an easily acquired prescription — buy what you need. I’ll introduce you to some of these independent pot retailers in my piece today.
Now, as if right on cue, Vancouver-based pollster Insights West is out today with a survey of the attitudes of Canadians about pot retailers and other cannabis issues. Some findings:
36 per cent of all Canadians say they’re cool with pot being sold in stand-alone stories set up for the purpose of selling cannabis products versus 29 per cent who think it should be sold in drugstores or pharmacies, while 16 per cent think selling pot products is a job best left to liquor stores or other outlets where alcoholic beverages are sold.
Most current and regular marijuana users say they get what they need “from a friend” (51 per cent) while 14 per cent of regular users get it from a dispensary.
A significant majority (57%) of current regular marijuana users say they will abandon the way they get their pot now and buy it from a licensed store if and when that becomes legal.
More @ National Post
Alberta justice minister heading to Colorado for pot legalization research
Alberta's justice minister is travelling to Colorado Thursday to talk to officials about how they dealt with the legalization of marijuana in their state. During her three-day visit, Kathleen Ganley plans to meet with the state's attorney general, officials from the city of Denver, Denver police and the Denver Fire Department. She will also be talking to environmental health workers plus building and licensing experts.
The federal Liberals intend to legalize pot in the spring of 2017. According to an Alberta government news release, the provinces have not yet heard what role they will play in developing a regulatory framework.
More @ CBC.CA
Marijuana.Ca Comment: We've never seen a headline like that. :)
We are in the midst of a monumental shift with respect to marijuana. In Canada and around the world. It's been a long time coming. Bring it on.
Why the government can’t charge more than $10 a gram for legal pot
On paper, marijuana sales may be a government monopoly after legalization, as alcohol sales largely are now. Deficit-plagued provinces, struggling to fund hospitals, roads and education systems, may be tempted to squeeze as much tax revenue from pot as possible. In January, a CIBC World Markets report estimated that the federal and provincial governments might be able to share up to $5 billion in new revenue from marijuana taxes, ” … but only if all the underground sales are effectively curtailed.”
But pricing pot will be a delicate exercise in maximizing taxes while not driving buyers back to the black market. It doesn’t help that the black market already exists and is deeply rooted.
“They have to find that sweet spot in between,” says University of Toronto PhD student Jenna Valleriani, who studies marijuana dispensaries. “People have been purchasing off the black market for twenty years, thirty years. It’s going to be really difficult for them to walk into a store and purchase their cannabis legally.”
To really eliminate the black market, legal pot would have to be sold for under $10 a gram, Valleriani says.
More @ Global News
Alex Rogers says the world will take Canada's lead on pot legalization if it's done right
There's no question that when it comes to marijuana, Vancouver is recognized worldwide as being a leader in the move away from prohibition. Acknowledging our city's love of the herb, CEO Alex Rogers knew that Vancouver needed to be a stop for the International Cannabis Business Conference, a traveling event Rogers founded that gives businesses in the industry an opportunity to network and learn from other professionals in the field.
"[Canada] is the first G7 country in the world to [legalize recreational use], and I think it's important that they do it well, because I think the world is going to actually take Canada's lead more than the United States' lead," said Rogers.
More @ Georgia Straight
The marijuana market could be bigger than the market for beer in Canada
if businesses are allowed to set up cannabis shops and compete in the same way that other retailers do, Canadians could be buying as much as $10 billion worth of marijuana products a year. That estimate comes from Avery Shenfeld, chief economist at CIBC World Markets.To put that in perspective, Canadians bought about $9-billion-worth of beer in 2015, according to Statistics Canada.
To put that in perspective, Canadians bought about $9-billion-worth of beer in 2015, according to Statistics Canada.
Michael McLellan, a financial consultant to the medical marijuana industry, thinks retail sales of cannabis products could be much bigger. “This is a 10-year, bull-market run. You’re creating a new legitimate legal business for what is going to be a $10-billion to $20-billion a year market,” he said.
More @ National Post
By Matt Ferner
A chemical compound found in marijuana can now be used for medicinal purposes in the United Kingdom, according to the governmental branch that regulates medicine.
“We have come to the opinion that products containing cannabidiol (CBD) are a medicine,” a spokesman for the U.K.’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency told The Huffington Post.
CBD, one of dozens of chemical compounds found in marijuana, is nonpsychoactive so it doesn’t produce the “high” sensation associated with THC. And a growing body of research has shown significant promise for using CBD to treat a wide range of medical conditions, including some forms of cancer, irritable bowel diseases, depression, multiple sclerosis and post-traumatic stress disorder.
More @ Huffington Post
Marijuana.Ca Comment: There is a large and expanding number of anecdotal accounts that purport benefits or significant benefits from CBD for various symptoms and illnesses. There is also an increase in the number of studies, research projects and clinicial trials in this area.
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Ian Frizell & Parkinson's
This video demonstrates the effect that marijuana/cannabis has upon my Parkinson's Disease tremor. MPs in the UK are backing a call to legalise it for medical use.
Managing Parkinson’s Disease Symptoms With Medical Marijuana
Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disease that is caused by destruction of dopaminergic neurons (i.e. cells of the nervous system that make and release dopamine, a signalling molecule) in the substantia nigra (SN), an area of the brain involved in regulating movement. Patients with Parkinson’s Disease experience tremors, slowed movement, muscle stiffness, balance issues, sleep disturbance, and more. Parkinson’s Disease is a debilitating disease with no cure, although there are treatment options available. For patients with PD with difficult-to-control symptoms, or for those who are experiencing severe negative side effects from standard therapy, cannabinoid medicine may provide necessary relief in some instances.
In a study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology in September 2014 found that treatment with 300 mg/day of the cannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD) in patients with Parkinson’s Disease, without dementia or comorbid psychiatric conditions (i.e. those occurring at the same time as the primary disease), increased well-being and quality of life compared to patients who had received the placebo (an inactive treatment used to attempt to control for “expectancy effects”). However, there was no improvement in measures of motor (i.e. movement) and general symptoms, and no evidence for possible neuroprotective effects, and the sample size was small, with only 21 participants split into 3 groups (placebo, 75 mg/day CBD, and 300 mg/day CBD). In spite of the lack of significance in certain measures and the small sample size, these results are impressive, especially given that the increase in well-being and quality of life resulted from use of a non-psychoactive cannabinoid.
More @ Medical Jane
Richard Branson to marijuana advocates: Fight to legalize it
Renowned billionaire and tech entrepreneur Richard Branson told a room full of cannabis advocates he was simply in the mood to "take a spliff or two," and much of the world is ready to legally take some tokes, too. "Why not?" the Virgin Group founder asked a crowd of about 1,000 people Saturday during the second annual New West Summit conference, "The Future of Cannabis, Now," in downtown San Francisco. Branson lending his name also shows how far the industry has come, said Adrienne Nascimento, a marketing executive for WeedWeek, a Colorado-based newsletter. "It's huge. This is a wellness industry and Richard Branson shows how this business is evolving," she said.
Just how big would legalizing marijuana be in California? Well, it's the most populous state in the US and has the world's sixth-largest economy with a gross domestic product of about $2.5 trillion. Overall, the weed industry is now worth $7.2 billion and growing 29 percent annually, according to New Frontier, a data-analysis group focusing on marijuana. The industry will be worth $20.5 billion (and possibly higher) by 2020, New Frontier projects.
More @ CNET
Canada - Medical marijuana producers jockey for top spot as legalization for recreational use looms
Industry insiders discussed possibilities for the future at a conference in Vancouver last week
Medical cannabis sellers are in Vancouver this week hoping to catch a glimpse of what their future may hold in light of the looming federal legalization of recreational marijuana. Workshops at the International Cannabis Business Conference that began Thursday and continue Friday include titles like "Safeguarding medical marijuana as legalization unfolds" and "The future of dispensaries in Canada." The medical marijuana industry has flourished in the past decade, dominated by federally illegal but municipally sanctioned dispensaries. These small businesses operate despite a federal dispensary system led by large-scale producers.
Both stand to lose or win big depending on how Ottawa rolls out legalization across the country this spring.
More @ CBC
Canada - Lift Resource Centre’s Jamie Shaw on the Canadian Cannabis Scene Ahead of the ICBC
Activist and consultant Jamie Shaw has been one of the leaders of the burgeoning cannabis industry in Vancouver, Canada, understanding the importance of sensible regulations and the need to take care of patients. Shaw has served as director of the BC Compassion Club Society, and president of the Canadian Association of Medical Cannabis Dispensaries, as well as co-founding Canada’s first Women Grow chapter. She currently serves as Communications for Lift Resource Centre. Jamie will be moderating a panel of industry experts at the International Cannabis Business Conference and I very much appreciated having a few minutes to speak with her.
More @ International CBC