Medical cannabis processing plant proposal welcomed by Richmond Valley Council [ABC]

A Canadian company wants to build the biggest medical cannabis processing plant in the southern hemisphere at Casino, in northern New South Wales. PUF Ventures Inc has announced a strategic partnership with the Richmond Valley Council to construct a 9.3-hectare greenhouse operation. When operating at full scale, it could produce 100,000 kilograms of cannabis a year.

‘Strict’ security measures needed for cannabis facility [The Northern Star]

The company behind plans to build an $80-100 million cannabis facility in Casino looked at more than 70 potential sites across the Northern Rivers before committing to a deal with Richmond Valley Council. Michael Horsfall, CEO of PUF Ventures Australia, said Richmond Valley Council’s supportive attitude had been crucial to its decision. “We wanted to go somewhere where we could really make a difference,” Mr Horsfall said.

Women’s organisation VIEW Clubs of Australia votes to make medicinal cannabis lobbying priority, at 2017 national conference in Tamworth [Northern Daily Leader]

An Australia-wide women’s organisation has voted to make medicinal cannabis its lobbying priority for the coming years, at a national conference in Tamworth.VIEW Clubs of Australia, with 16,000 members nationwide, voted on this resolution at its conference at TRECC at the weekend. It joins the Country Women’s Association, NSW Nurses and Midwives Association and other groups in supporting the movement.

Open letter from the front line of the futile War on Drugs [Independent Australia]

In the USA, the top five lobby groups opposing legislative change are police unions, private prison corporations, big pharma, prison guard unions and alcohol producers. I would wager there are elements of all these lobby groups active here in Australia too. Not to forget various religious groups as well.

Prescription drug abuse to blame for close to 70 per cent of Australia’s drug-related deaths [SBS]

Australia has recorded its highest number of drug-induced deaths in twenty years. New data by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) shows two-thirds of the deaths were a result of prescription drug abuse.

Family Friendly Fun Day For Paul Lawrence & family [MCUA]

10am 8 October, Fairy Meadow Bowls & Rec Club, Fairy Meadow NSW. This event is to raise funds to assist Paul and his family. This epic journey Paul has undertaken with his health has drained the family and taken a toll financially and emotionally on them all. Paul has remained stanch and independent in this battle and has been a strong voice as a cannabis advocate. The MCUA has made this event on Paul’s behalf so we can get the word out on social media to all who know and love him and invite them to attend. The day will commence at 10am with Barefoot Bowls til 12md. There are activities planned throughout the afternoon including Raffles & Silent Auction & Games during the afternoon. Paul assures me Club Bistro serves a nice lunch and says he will be there from 12.30 till as long as he can last..

How to Regulate Cannabis: A Practical Guide [Transform]

Just ­a­ few­ years­ ago, ­this ­book ­would­ have ­been ­largely­ theoretical.­ Now, ­however,­ the cannabis regulation debate has moved decisively into the political mainstream, and multiple cities, states and countries are considering, developing or implementing a range of regulated market models for the non-medical use of cannabis. So this book draws on evidence not only from decades of experience regulating alcohol, tobacco, and medicines, ­but­ also ­from ­Spain’s non-profit­ ‘cannabis social clubs’, commercial cannabis enterprises ­in ­the­ US ­and­ the­ Netherlands,­ and­ Uruguay’s­ government-controlled­ system of cannabis regulation – which are just some of the proliferating models for regulating non-medical cannabis use around the world.

Could These Be The 5 Cannabis Companies To Watch In 2017 [Baystreet]

Twenty years ago, it was vilified as a “gateway drug.” Now, cannabis has grown into a big business, with the potential to become even bigger as laws are scheduled to change to reflect shifting social attitudes towards marijuana and investment picks up to take advantage of increased demand. And make no mistake: the demand is huge. In the United States, the legal cannabis industry is worth $6.7 billion, according to Bloomberg. In Canada alone, cannabis is estimated to reach an $8 billion market with 150,000 people using marijuana for medical purposes. Yet estimates indicate that number could increase dramatically after pot is legalized next year: by 2021 there could be 3.6 million legal users consuming 420,000 kilograms of pot.

Colorado Bans Weed Gummy Bears [Vice]

This is why we can’t have nice things. “Beginning October 1, edible marijuana-infused products in the shape of a human, animal or fruit are strictly prohibited, including shapes that resemble or contain characteristics of a realistic or fictional human, animal, or fruit, including artistic, caricature, or cartoon renderings,” reads a statement from the Colorado Department of Revenue, the bureaucracy that oversees marijuana enforcement in the state.

Survey Finds Coloradans Use Marijuana For Sleep and Pain Relief, Not Partying [Civilized]

An organization called Consumer Research Around Cannabis recently surveyed more than 1,200 marijuana users in Denver and nearby areas and asked what purpose they had for using. 47.2 percent of respondents said they used cannabis products in order to fall asleep. 47.2 percent also said they used marijuana for pain relief. The third most popular reason for using marijuana was for anxiety or depression, with 45.7 percent of respondents giving that as a reason. Contrary to popular belief, only 28.5 percent of respondents said they used marijuana to have a good time with family or friends, a.k.a. partying. 32.8 percent said they used it for creative purposes or expanding thought processes.

Las Vegas marijuana shop can stay open 24/7 [Review Journal]

Las Vegas is getting its first 24/7 pot shop. City code forces dispensaries to close between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. But the City Council on Wednesday unanimously voted to let Oasis Cannabis to be an always-open marijuana dispensary. Mayor Carolyn Goodman, whose son has ownership interest in marijuana companies, abstained from the vote.

A growing problem: Lightening the carbon footprint of cannabis farms [Phys.org]

Hade said the growing industry could wipe out gains the country made in the last decade that kept energy consumption stable even as the population and economy grew. As the legalized marijuana industry expands in California, it could seriously challenge state goals to reduce greenhouse emissions.

View from the USA: Holy smoke [National Geographic]

As I enter the building, I’m stunned into silence. The interior — created by Spanish artist Okuda San Miguel — is, if nothing else, a magnificent piece of art. It’s like the love child of the Sistine Chapel and a Pink Floyd album cover. Every surface is adorned in geometric patterns of red, yellow and blue, like the inside of a giant kaleidoscope; stars and eyes appear out of nowhere; two giants with spherical beaks emerge from the stained-glass windows like some kind of LSD-fuelled hallucination. Perhaps most impressively of all, it took Okuda just six days to complete — let me guess: he rested on the seventh.

Denver gets a little help from other states, nations as it hosts annual marijuana regulatory conference [The Cannabist]

The city and county of Denver will conduct its Marijuana Management Symposium from Oct. 18 to 20. More than 350 public policy makers are expected to attend the conference that will include panelists from seven states and four countries that have legalized or are planning to legalize marijuana.

Is Fentanyl-Laced Marijuana Use on the Rise? [Snopes]

Nearly all reports of fentanyl-laced marijuana use are based on faulty reporting, and no evidence suggests that its occurrence is in any way rooted in reality.

Pot legalization in California brings a bonanza of government jobs [Los Angeles Times]

Scientists. Tax collectors. Typists. Analysts. Lawyers. And more scientists. Recreational marijuana use becomes legal in California in 2018, and one of the things to blossom in the emerging industry isn’t green and leafy, it’s government jobs. The state is on a hiring binge to fill what eventually will be hundreds of new government positions by 2019 intended to bring order to the legal pot economy, from keeping watch on what’s seeping into streams near cannabis grows to running background checks on storefront sellers who want government licenses. Thousands of additional jobs are expected to be added by local governments.

More people were arrested last year over pot than for murder, rape, aggravated assault and robbery — combined [The Washington Post]

In 2016 more people were arrested for marijuana possession than for all crimes the FBI classifies as violent, according to 2016 crime data released by the agency on Monday. Marijuana possession arrests edged up slightly in 2016, a year in which voters in four states approved recreational marijuana initiatives and voters in three others approved medical marijuana measures.

Why the decriminalisation of marijuana is a civil rights cause [The Guardian]

Generations of Americans – mostly people of color – have been crushed by aggressive laws on marijuana. It’s time for that to change.

Students can now major in ‘medical plant chemistry’ — or marijuana — at a Midwestern university [Business Insider]

Northern Michigan University is offering a medicinal plant chemistry program – effectively, a major in marijuana – that will prepare students for careers in the burgeoning marijuana industry. It’s the first degree of its kind at a four-year undergraduate college, CBS Detroit reports.

A Commercial Cannabis Production Program Is Coming To This Canadian College [Civilized]

Ontario’s Niagara College is launching a one-year post-graduate program in commercial cannabis production – the first of its kind in Canada. The program is accepting 25 students for its “class of 2019”, who must have earned a diploma or degree in horticulture, agricultural sciences or related fields. Al Unwin, associate dean of environmental and horticultural studies, says sudents will learn about plant pathology and how to grow a healthy cannabis crop with courses focusing on the regulations, standards and legal requirements for licensed producers. Consultations with licensed producers illustrated a burgeoning demand for trained workers in the Canadian cannabis industry, says Unwin.

Ontario Adopts Tough Zero-Tolerance Policy On Stoned Drivers [Herb]

The Canadian province of Ontario is adopting a zero-tolerance policy toward many drivers who use cannabis. Commercial truckers, motorists 21 and under, and novice drivers will now face harsh penalties if caught behind the wheel after smoking weed, Premier Kathleen Wynne confirmed.

Justin Trudeau surprises premiers, outlines proposed excise tax on legalized marijuana [Global News]

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is proposing to levy a federal excise tax on recreational marijuana once it becomes legal next July, with the provinces and territories receiving half the revenue. Under the federal proposal put to premiers during a first ministers meeting today, each gram of pot would be subject to an excise tax of $1 on sales up to $10 and a 10 per cent tax on sales of more than $10.

Former Tory minister suggests legalising cannabis could win over millennial voters [Independent]

Crispin Blunt says prohibiting drugs was ‘about as intelligent as the prohibition of alcohol in the United States’ in the 1920s.

Britain is developing a weed café culture under the radar [Independent]

Enterprising youths are providing an in-demand product that governments around the globe are regulating and taxing.

Cannabis, the downside of the criminal policy reform {in France} [volteface]

This article was originally published on LeMonde.fr on Monday 18 September and written by Julia Pascual. The criminal reform referred to in this article is a change of sanction from a prison sentence and a fine of up to €3,750 to a low fixed fine for possession of small amounts of cannabis.

Spectrum Denmark Extends Canopy Growth’s Global Reach [New Cannabis Ventures]

Danish parliament recently passed legislation that paves the way for legal medicinal cannabis sales to begin January 1, 2018. To date, patient access to cannabis in Denmark has been limited to the sale of costly handmade compounds available from a single pharmacy. Canopy Growth is confident that the production and formulation model it has built in Canada will lead to clear consumer preference for Spectrum’s oil and dried cannabis products.

Tilray to Build $24 Million Medical Cannabis Cultivation and Processing Facility in Portugal [Marijuana Times]

Tilray, a federally licensed cannabis producer based in British Columbia, recently announced plans to build a €20 million ($24 million) European campus in Portugal to cultivate, process, package, and distribute GMP-grade medical cannabis products to qualified patients, pharmacies, and researchers throughout the European common market.

Doctors call for greater access to medical cannabis [Times of Malta]

Patients who need cannabis as treatment “have been forgotten”, and before discussing the recreational use of the plant, Malta should prioritise access to more medicinal cannabis preparations, the authorities are being urged.

Israel’s Thriving Marijuana Industry May Have Breakthrough in Autism Treatment [Newsline]

Trials are reportedly underway in Israel on autistic children to determine the effectiveness of medical marijuana, an area of growing research in the Jewish state — with encouraging signs. According to Haaretz, Israel has been positioning itself as a leader in the field of medical marijuana research, bolstered by a Health Ministry that encourages research — and an increase in the number of growers.

Kyrgyzstan Could Bring Legal Cannabis To Central Asia [High Times]

Speaking in May at a televised conference, Abdygulov painted Kyrgyzstan as a potential Netherlands of the Commonwealth of Independent States, the community of post-Soviet countries. Abdygulov told a shocked audience: “How to create a tourist heaven in Kyrgyzstan? If you’re, for instance, neoliberals, then think about creation of effective trademark. I know how to bring all the tourists here—legalize marijuana. That’s it. That’ll do. The entire CIS will travel Kyrgyzstan, no empty rooms in hotels will be left. That’s a trademark.” Officials later tried to dismiss Abdygulov’s recommendation as a joke. And he may have to step down as deputy prime minister depending on the outcome of the October elections.

New Study Says Eating Raw Weed Protects Against Brain Diseases [Herb]

When hearing of the numerous therapeutic and healing properties of cannabis, the focus has primarily been on certain cannabinoids like THC and more recently, CBD. But there’s another cannabinoid floating around out there that is definitely deserving of more attention: THCA or tetrahydrocannabinolic acid. THCA is actually the non-psychoactive cannabinoid that later converts to THC when decarbed via smoking, vaporization or when cooked, and as it turns out, it’s pretty powerful in its own right. Recent studies suggest that THCA in raw weed might possess particularly potent neuroprotective abilities.

Relieve The Unnecessary Suffering And Early Preventable Deaths [MediHuanna]

One of the main problems in Australia is that MC is classified as a narcotic and schedule 8 drug. There is an extremely difficult, time consuming and onerous process at both state and federal levels that the doctor has to go through to obtain permission to prescribe MC. Even the most conscientious and senior GPs are very reluctant to get involved. They claim that it makes absolutely no sense for them to have to justify to a bureaucrat in Canberra their reason for wanting to prescribe MC when it is easier for them to reach for their prescription pads and prescribe an ineffective and addictive opiate medication.

A problem of ‘joint’ use: exploring the interplay between cannabis and tobacco [volteface]

The available data came from the Global Drug Survey, which asks people across the world about their drug use. We surveyed over 30,000 cannabis users from 18 counties about their favourite way to smoke cannabis, with or without tobacco. We found huge global variation in how the drugs are used together. Across Europe, smoking cannabis and tobacco in joints is the norm (about 75% of respondents use it this way in the UK). In the US and Canada, the most popular way to smoke cannabis is on its own, without tobacco. In Australia and New Zealand, people use a combination of the two methods.

Dabbing Cannabis Oil May Expose You To Cancer-Causing Toxins [Forbes]

A study published this month in the American Chemical Society’s ACS Omega found that a method of using cannabis known as dabbing may expose users to elevated toxin levels as compared to other methods. In a study of how the chemicals in concentrated cannabis break down under heat, Portland State University researchers Jiries Meehan-Atrash, Wentai Luo, and Robert M. Strongin discovered that concentrates exposed to the high heat common to dab setups produced elevated levels of carcinogenic and toxic compounds.

Cannabis Is Not A ‘Gateway’ And Stops People Doing ‘Harder’ Drugs, Study Finds [Lad Bible]

The debate over the pros and cons of legalising cannabis has been drawn out for years now. The class B drug will currently land you up to five years in prison for possession, and up to 14 years for supply and production. On both sides of the argument there are valid points. Many claim that there are ‘harder’ drugs out there (the likes of cocaine, heroin, ecstasy and crystal meth) that could cause greater damage. For others it promotes a counterculture, and presents a challenge to both government and social order – which are factors in its demonisation.

September Public Support Drive [Erowid]

Each September Erowid holds its annual public support drive. This is our biggest fundraiser of the year, where we try to reach our goal of 1,225 unique contributors during the month (one more than last year). We’re excited to have a matching challenge to coincide with it again this year which doubles donations of $10 to $500! (See rules below.) We believe that truth, accuracy, and integrity in information about psychoactive plants, drugs, and technologies will lead to healthier and more balanced choices and policies around psychoactives. Read more about our recent projects below. Please, make a small donation today!

Seedlings 2017: Medical Cannabis Event [BuddingTech]

Mon. 16 October 2017 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm Tank Stream Labs Level 4 17-19 Bridge Street Sydney – We are proud to announce that we will be hosting our second Seedlings event on the 16th of October. Last year, Seedlings was launched and was noted as a resounding success highlighting the key challenges and opportunities that exist in the medical cannabis industry. This year we are putting together a smaller, more intimate event. We invite you to spend the evening with us learning about innovation and the latest advancements in the medical cannabis industry. Please note there are only 100 tickets available. This event will also include food and drinks. Book now before tickets are sold out.

The New Landscape of Cannabis: Products for Recreational and Medicinal Consumers [Evolver Learning Lab]

Discover the many products and methods of consumption for both medicinal and recreational use in the cutting-edge scene of cannabis.  STARTS THURSDAY, OCTOBER 19. REGISTER NOW! Cannabis is one of the world’s most profound sacred plants. With its new-found legislative liberation in parts of the United States, the industry is exponentially growing, and the cannabis scene is being transformed by new science and social practices. It is medicine. It is transformational. It is a career. It is an obsession. And because it has been hidden from public view, it is also a scene plagued by wildly incorrect “facts” and woeful misinformation. Join Max Montrose for the 4-part live, interactive video course which will separate the rumors from the truth, and introduce you to the latest, exciting innovations.

Us Comedian & Psychonaut Shane Mauss Brings Acclaimed Psychedelic-Comedy Show “A Good Trip” To Australia!

Shane Mauss wants us all to have a good trip. Join him on a funny journey through the stigma, history, laws, and science of psychedelics when Shane brings his acclaimed comedy show about psychedelics, science and how they mesh to Australia this October. All shows on sale now with no more to be added!

Australia’s largest hemp & cannabis event heads to Melbourne [Hydroponics]

The Hemp Health & Innovation (HHI) Expo & Symposium is everything hemp and cannabis. With a bigger venue and hemp foods officially legal for sale and consumption in Australia from Nov 12, HHI Melbourne will be Australia’s first large scale opportunity to sample, purchase and taste hemp foods.

EGA 2017 third program announcement plus the infamous raffle now up and running [Entheogenesis Australis]

Entheogenesis Australis 2017 Outdoor Psychedelic Symposium, 8th – 10th of December, Eildon Victoria It is our absolute pleasure to share with you Entheogenesis Australis (EGA’s) greatly anticipated third program announcement. We are also letting you know that the infamous EGA technicolour raffle is now open. EGA’s psychedelic symposium brings together a formidable panel of experts in the area of psychedelic studies from Australia and around the world. The lecture program forms the backbone of what will be the most comprehensive and exciting conference of its kind in Australasia. There will also be a broad range of lectures, panels, a market space and an arts program to give balance to the content-heavy lecture and workshop programs. The third program announcement listed below has information about workshops, group-based healing modalities, PRISM research track and the bonus Monday programming at the EGA campground. To see the outstanding full list of more than 50 EGA lectures – Click Here –  Tickets to the 2017 Psychedelic Symposium are strictly limited to 500 and are available as pre-sale only. With less than 150 tickets remaining, please secure your ticket soon, as tickets will sell out. We hope very much to see you in December for this unique conference gathering. Buy your ticket now – www.entheogenesis.org/tickets

New Druglawed film released! [Druglawed]

“Druglawed: Spokeswoman” has just been released. The production crew wants to thank all the fine Australians who supported this production! Special thanks go out to the good folk of Nimbin and the Nimbin Hemp Embassy. “Spokeswoman” is filmed on location in Sydney, Melbourne and Nimbin, featuring outspoken Member of Parliament Fiona Patten, the firebrand civil libertarian who is campaigning for an end to the War on Drugs. Also featured are Law Enforcement Against Prohibition campaigner Greg Denham, high-profile medical cannabis patient Ben Oakley, and the provider of his life-saving cannabinoid medicine, Jenny Hallam. Andrew Kavasilas, pioneering Nimbin hemp researcher, co-stars in the film, which showcases some of the celebratory scenes at Nimbin MardiGrass 2017. “Spokeswoman” can be downloaded for $4.20, all proceeds go towards funding post production of the final chapter of Druglawed Series 2, which was filmed in Uruguay. Click this link to download the film: https://druglawed.vhx.tv/buy/druglawed-2-episode-3-spokeswoman

Petition: Please help desperate terminally-ill and sick patients — medicinal cannabis is blocked [change.org]

The laws are so broken that just 18 sick patients have managed to access medicinal cannabis in NSW. I need your help now by signing my petition. I’ve spoken with NSW Health Minister personally about fixing the broken medicinal cannabis laws. But the government still hasn’t fixed these laws blocking doctors and patients from accessing medicinal cannabis, in fact it has added to them.