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Quick Hits: All the Latest Cannabis Industry News

Major Illicit Cannabis Bust in Paraguay 

In mid-April, the South American country of Paraguay’s security forces dealt a severe blow to several narcotrafficking operations, mostly occurring at the border with Brazil.

Authorities destroyed nearly 346 tons of cannabis, including illegal crops and ready-to-consume plant material, the Paraguayan National Anti-Drug Secretariat (SENAD, Spanish) said in several statements.

On April 22, SENAD reported that, during search operations to find narco camps and illicit crops in the Caaguazú department (a department is an administrative or political division in many countries.), its units found nearly four tons of cannabis in the Bella Vista area.

The crop was being prepared for packaging on a rural property.

At the packaging location, service members’ also discovered cannabis that was still being cured.

The tools for that purpose were also confiscated.

In total, the cannabis found on-site amounted to 3,900 kg,” SENAD said in a statement. 

Click here for the full story on the large canna-bust by Guillermo Saavedra for Diálogo digital military magazine. 

Louisiana Fails to Legalize It

A bid to legalize cannabis for adult consumption in Louisiana failed during this legislative session as it did not garner enough support from lawmakers.

The House on Tuesday rejected Republican Rep. Richard Nelson’s bill to tax the sale of cannabis.

This vote indicated Nelson’s separate bill to create a legal framework to sell and possess marijuana for adults to consume also couldn’t pass.

Forty-seven lawmakers in the House backed the tax bill, while 48 voted against it.

After that marijuana bill failed, Nelson said he was ending his effort this session to legalize cannabis for adult use.

Full Story here. 

Wake Network Successfully Completes First Legal Importation of Psilocybin Mushrooms from Jamaica to California

Wake Network, Inc., a Canadian company at the forefront of psilocybin mushroom production and developer of genomics-based integration therapies, announced this week that it has completed the first fully legal and United Nations-compliant importation of psilocybin-containing mushrooms from its Jamaican subsidy into the U.S., having secured all required permits from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Wake is a fungi bioscience company focused on advancing the field of psychedelic and fungi-based therapeutics to address the growing need for effective mental health treatments.

Psilocybin, a key psychoactive component in several species of mushrooms, is being heralded as a “breakthrough therapy” for alleviating the symptoms of many mental health disorders. 

More details on Wake’s international mushroom import here

Alabama is the 37th U.S. State to Legalize Medical Marijuana

On Monday, Alabama became the 37th state to legalize medical marijuana, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, becoming the second market in the Deep South. 

Republican Governor Kay Ivey signed the historic bill, which will allow businesses to start applying for licenses Sept 1. 2022.  

This legislative passing shows the conservative south is slowly inching toward a greener future. 

Full Story here

Montana Governor Signs Measure Weakening Voter-Initiated Marijuana Legalization Law

(Via NORML) Republican Gov. Greg Gianforte signed legislation into law late Wednesday amending the state’s 2020 voter-approved adult-use legalization law.

House Bill 701 makes several changes to the voter-initiated law.

Precisely, it moves back the deadline for state regulators to begin licensing retail marijuana sales from October 1, 2021, to January 1, 2022. Initially (for the first 18 months), only those already operating medical dispensaries will be eligible to engage in retail marijuana sales.

The measure also reduces the number of cannabis plants that an adult may legally cultivate in a private residence from a total of four plants and/or four seedlings to no more than two plants and/or two seedlings.

Households with more than one adult are permitted to grow twice that amount without penalty.

It also imposes restrictions on the quantity and potency of THC content to be available in retail products.

Cannabis flower is capped at 35 percent THC; edible products are limited to no more than 100mg of THC per package, and other concentrated products cap at 800mg.

Hot Stat From Jane Technologies:

The cannabis industry has experienced a dramatic 135% increase in online purchases over the last two years, with the pandemic accelerating the consumer shift to e-commerce.

Today, more than 40% of total cannabis sales in the U.S. originate online, up from 17% in 2019.

Q1 Revenue Reports from a couple of cannabis companies: 

Ascend Wellness Holdings (AWH) Q1 2021 Revenue Reports claims Increases of 21.8% sequentially to $66.1 Million.

AWH adds five new dispensaries since the beginning of 2021, Including its Boston-based flagship.

AWH is also opening a dispensary in Rochelle Park, New Jersey, this weekend. 

AWH appoints Joe Hinrichs, former President, Automotive, at Ford Motor Company, to the Board of Directors. 

MariMed Q1 2021 Revenue Reports claims the company achieved its highest-ever quarter of core cannabis revenue and profitability, tracking 2021 full-year guidance, by generating core cannabis revenue of $24.6 million, a 230% increase over $7.5 million in Q1 2020, and delivered gross profit on core cannabis revenue of $13.2 million, an increase of 171% over $4.9 million in Q1 2020. 

MariMed also claims it delivered $6.8 million in cash flows from operations, increasing$7.2 million from cash flows used in operations of $0.4 million in Q1 2020. 

New dispensary and In-House Strain Alert. 

Ayr Wellness launched its brand of flower, Revel, in Pennsylvania.

The company is opening another Florida dispensary under the Liberty Health Sciences name.

Ayr Wellness took over Liberty early this year and has an aggressive turnaround plan.

Liberty Health has been spiraling since its former CEO stepped down amid accusations of sexual assault.


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