AUSTRALIA & NZ

Hemp Embassy president on drug driving charge [Echo NetDaily]

The president of Nimbin’s Hemp Embassy, Michael Balderstone, has revealed he tested positive for cannabis during a recent random drug test (RDT) in the area.

New Laws Will Allow the Use of Military to Break Protests [Sydney Criminal Lawyers]

The new legislation also allows the PM and other authorised ministers to send in the troops when state authorities haven’t requested assistance, but Commonwealth interests are at stake. And it provides ADF members with enhanced search capabilities and limited shoot-to-kill powers.

Father who juiced cannabis for sick daughters avoids jail [ABC]

A father who juiced cannabis to ease the suffering of his two daughters has avoided jail time. Stephen Taylor’s daughters, Morgan and Ariel, both suffer from the auto-immune disease Crohn’s and have been repeatedly hospitalised. Mr Taylor began to grow and juice his own cannabis after struggling to find a doctor who would help him through the Therapeutic Goods Administration’s (TGA) lengthy application process to legally access medical marijuana.

Stephen Taylor of Winmalee given bond in Penrith Local Court [Blue Mountains Gazette]

A Winmalee dad facing police charges after juicing home grown cannabis to treat his seriously ill daughters, was put on a six month good behaviour bond in Penrith Local Court today.

Medical cannabis in Australia ‘pretty much inaccessible’, leaving patients looking to US [ABC]

Bastian Seidel, president of the Royal College of GPs, is frustrated that so few patients are being given the option to access medicinal cannabis and so few doctors are being allowed to prescribe it. “There are 38,000 GPs in the country — only one of them is an authorised prescriber for medicinal cannabis,” he told 7.30. He said medical marijuana was still “pretty much inaccessible” for those who need it. In a statement to 7.30, the TGA said 249 individual medical practitioners have had applications approved under its Special Access Scheme. It added that “33 medical practitioners have been approved as authorised prescribers”. Iain McGregor, a psychopharmacologist at the Lambert Initiative For Cannabinoid Therapeutics at Sydney University, estimates as many as 100,000 people in the country may be using illegal cannabis for medical problems.

National Pain Week survey finds sufferers want their GPs to be able to prescribe them cannabis [news.com.au]

People suffering from chronic pain have one request for the government: access to medicinal cannabis.

Would you treat your dog or cat with medicinal cannabis? [The Canberra Times]

An Australian company is testing whether medicinal cannabis product could be used to treat medical conditions in family pets. After a successful trial of cannabis-based medicine to help treat conditions in dogs, CannPal is now expanding its testing to cats.

State Govt softens its cannabis crackdown [In Daily]

The South Australian State Government has backed down on one of the most contentious elements of its “war against drugs”, dropping proposed jail terms for cannabis possession.

Ninety per cent of New Zealanders support decriminalisation of medical cannabis, says Drug Foundation [TVNZ]

“We have two-thirds of New Zealanders would support the decriminalisation or legalisation of cannabis; people would also support it to grow their own; and there’s massive support – about 90 per cent of New Zealanders – want cannabis legalised for medical use for people with terminal illness or people who are in pain.”

National Party leader Simon Bridges sets out alternative bill on medicinal cannabis [NZ Herald]

National leader Simon Bridges has announced the details of a bill which would allow medicinal cannabis products to be treated like any other medicines and available from the chemist.

Misuse of Drugs (Medicinal Cannabis) Amendment Bill [New Zealand Parliament]

Final report of the Health Committee.

 

 

NORTH AMERICA

Ohio Congressman: Marijuana Should Be “Legal in All 50 States” [Medical Marijuana Inc]

A congressman from Ohio yesterday called for marijuana to be legalized throughout the United States. In an op-ed published on CNN, U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan argued that the social and economic injustices caused by the country’s current cannabis policies are “too big to ignore,” and referred to prohibition as “morally wrong and economically nonsensical.”

Ohio medical marijuana program lagging [The Herald Dispatch]

Ohio voters have approved the sale of medical marijuana, but the licensed growth and sale of medical marijuana still isn’t legal, even though Hamilton Township has one of 12 licensed growth sites in Ohio. The medical marijuana program is supposed to start Sept. 8, but officials say the state won’t be ready to implement it by that time.

Rhode Island Allows Former Cannabis Offenders To Expunge Their Records [Medical Marijuana Inc]

The legislation — House Bill 8355 / S. 2477 — allows those who have been previously convicted for crimes involving the possession of less than an ounce of marijuana to petition the court for an order of expungement. While adult use marijuana remains illegal in Rhode Island, the state decriminalized minor marijuana possession in 2013 and has one of the strongest medical marijuana programs in the nation.

Suspected Marijuana Grower Crushed by Bulldozer During Pursuit [The Marijuana Times]

Earlier this month in Pennsylvania, a 51-year-old man named Gregory Longenecker was found crushed underneath a bulldozer that was being driven by a Pennsylvania Game Commission worker and carrying a state trooper, according to authorities.

Most in US think cannabis has health benefits, despite lack of data – study [The Guardian]

Americans believe marijuana is helpful in treating a variety of health problems despite a lack of available evidence supporting it, a new survey found.

Cannabis Illicit Market Shrinking, New DEA, Homeland Security Numbers Suggest [High Times]

Is the illicit marijuana market losing its power? Experts seem to think so.

‘It hits you very quickly’: Canada brews first cannabis beer [The Guardian]

Scientists in a small Ontario laboratory are testing enzymes and experimenting with fermentation. Their techniques are not new, but their focus is a first. They are developing what is being described as the world’s first beer brewed from cannabis.

Medical marijuana users worry Canada’s pot-impaired driving rules will run them off the road [The Star Edmonton]

Medical marijuana users worry they won’t be able to get behind the wheel once cannabis is legalized for recreational use. Under the federal government’s new impaired-driving rules, a motorist can be fined up to $1,000 for having two to five nanograms (ng) of THC per millilitre of blood within two hours of driving, and can be punished criminally for more than five ng.

 

 

UK & EUROPE

Medical cannabis: what will pharmacy’s role be? [The Pharmaceutical Journal]

How the UK has realised the benefits of medical cannabis and the involvement pharmacists could have in its supply.

Medical cannabis users could still be criminalised in UK despite government accepting its benefits [The Conversation]

The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs – the official body that advises the government – has since recommended that some forms of cannabis should be allowed for medical uses. This means that doctors might be able to prescribe them to patients. But the devil, as always, is in the detail, and in practice, people who use cannabis therapeutically will still be treated as criminals. This is for two reasons. One is that the council has only recommended “rescheduling” some forms of cannabis. The other is that the types of raw, organic cannabis that many people already use to treat their own conditions will probably still be completely banned.

Cannabis-derived medicinal products recommended to be available on prescription [UK Government]

The ACMD has recommended that cannabis-derived medicinal products should be placed in Schedule 2 of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001.

Defining “Medicinal Cannabis” [Rudi Fortson Q.C.]

The ACMD has published its advice to the Home Secretary regarding the scheduling of cannabis-derived medicinal products [link].  As stated in my earlier blog, in order to make certain cannabis related products available on prescription, it is not enough merely to move cannabis from schedule 1 to the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 to another schedule.  The complex provisions of the UK/EU medicines legislation must also be considered.

Cannabis Trades Association Receives Official Endorsement From the MHRA [Clear]

For nearly two years the Cannabis Trades Association (CTA) has been working with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the Food Standards Agency (FSA), the Home Office, Trading Standards and other UK authorities to bring order and professional standards to the growing market in legal cannabis and CBD products. The MHRA has now officially recognised CTA by inclusion in its Guidance Note 8 ‘A guide to what is a medicinal product’.

Blazing a trail: as legal cannabis goes global, will Britain be next? [The Guardian]

New laws in California and Canada, plus a high-profile UK medical case, have made it safer for nations to come out of the green closet. 

 

 

WORLD

Months After Decriminalising Cannabis, Bermuda Mulls Full Legalisation [Talking Drugs]

A senior minister in Bermuda has said the territory could legally regulate the production and sale of cannabis for “recreational”, non-medical purposes.

Lebanese farmer: Growing cannabis should be legal [BBC]

The Lebanese government is considering legalising cannabis for medical purposes. A farmer explains why he thinks this could “benefit everyone”.

 

 

HEALTH & SCIENCE

Researchers Identify How Cannabis Stimulates Appetite [Medical Marijuana Inc]

While cannabis has long been acknowledged for its appetite-stimulating properties, up until now little has been understood on how cannabis and its compounds alter eating behavior. In a new animal study shared last week at the Society for the Study of Investigative Behavior, researchers from Washington State University were able to gather some evidence on how cannabis triggers hunger hormones.

Cannabinoids: just like any other medication? [The Lancet]

More than 17 countries permit the medicinal use of cannabis, but the UK is not one of them. Cases of children with severe epilepsy who have seen benefit with cannabinoid derivatives from the cannabis plant but cannot access the medication have reignited the debate over medicinal cannabis. The UK’s legislative polices and intense bureaucracy over individual licensing are a source of inertia for clinicians and distress for patients. Part of the problem is the confusion between medicinal cannabis using the whole cannabis plant and cannabinoid derivatives, of which there are over 100.

Cannabis Addiction Is Not Heroin Addiction. That Doesn’t Make It Any Less Real. [Slate]

A large minority of people have trouble with cannabis, and for those people, it’s important to find help.

Cannabis use in psychiatric populations and risk of suicide: A new perspective [Biomed Central]

In the first study of its kind, a team of researchers in Canada examined marijuana (cannabis) use and the risk of suicidal behavior in psychiatric populations rather than the general population to see if similar results would be found (i.e., marijuana use increases suicidal behaviors). What they found could be used to inform the medical community working with these psychiatric populations in their assessment of suicide risk.

 

 

POLICY & BUSINESS

Here’s How You Can Help Expand Marijuana Legalization [Medical Marijuana Inc]

Here we offer six different ways to help contribute to the effort for marijuana legalization.

Laws allowing medical marijuana have little impact on road safety [MedicalXpress]

State laws that allow the use of medical marijuana are not significantly associated with cannabis-involved driving, according to a new study by Georgia State University associate professor of criminal justice and criminology Eric Sevigny.

Does legal weed make police more effective? [The Washington Post]

Marijuana legalization in Colorado and Washington state has “produced some demonstrable and persistent benefit” to police departments’ ability to solve other types of crime, according to researchers at Washington State University.

The Budgetary Effects of Ending Drug Prohibition [Cato Institute]

Drawing on the most recent available data, this bulletin estimates the fiscal windfall that would be achieved through drug legalization. All told, drug legalization could generate up to $106.7 billion in annual budgetary gains for federal, state, and local governments. Those gains would come from two primary sources: decreases in drug enforcement spending and increases in tax revenue. This bulletin estimates that state and local governments spend $29 billion on drug prohibition annually, while the federal government spends an additional $18 billion. Meanwhile, full drug legalization would yield $19 billion in state and local tax revenue and $39 billion in federal tax revenue.

Marijuana company Tilray’s stock climbs nearly 32 percent in first day’s trading [The Seattle Times]

British Columbia-based Tilray’s stock soared Thursday in the company’s first day of trading after it became the first marijuana company to complete an initial public offering in the U.S. The company, which is majority-owned by Seattle-based Privateer Holdings and trades on Nasdaq under ticker symbol TLRY, closed up nearly 32 percent at $22.39. Tilray offered 9 million shares priced at $17 each, and more than 11.9 million shares changed hands Thursday.

greenbox Launches Fully Automated Cannabis Kiosk [New Cannabis Ventures]

Unlike other vending machines in the space, greenbox is an interactive touch screen operated kiosk with the ability to vend multiple items during one transaction and is designed to streamline purchase flow by creating a fast and efficient customer experience. With its temperature controlled safe, dispensary owners have the ability to track shelf life, identify trending products and service customers quickly. The company focuses on five core verticals: cannabis flower, edibles, extracts, CBD products and cannabis accessories — all of which dispensary owners control at their discretion.

CULTURE & SOCIETY

CBD Throughout History [The Marijuana Times]

Cannabis products, especially CBD (also known as cannabidiol) oil supplements, are all the rage in today’s health industry. It seems like science is making a new discovery about the benefits of CBD with every passing moment. What you may not know, however, is that some of these “new discoveries” are not new at all. In fact, our ancestors were using cannabis for all kinds of medicinal and non-medicinal purposes long ago. Yes, they even had their own means of taking advantage of the health properties of CBD, even without the modern process of extraction to produce CBD products without its sister compound THC. With the long-running history of cannabis and its many beneficial uses, it certainly seems to add to the credibility of the rediscovery of its medicinal effects. We may have smart phones, smart TV’s, and even smart cars, but evidently our early society knew a thing or two; our ancestors, in fact, were pretty smart themselves.

There is little moral basis for cannabis consumption remaining a crime [The Conversation]

To punch someone on the nose is not only harmful it is wrongful. People have a moral duty not to punch us on the nose and we have a corresponding moral right not to be punched. However, we do not have a moral right to demand that others refrain from doing anything that might require medical treatment or any other sort of publicly financed services.

Arizer Extreme Q vs. Volcano Vaporizer | Pros and Cons [The Marijuana Times]

There’s no doubt that choosing the right vaping device is just as important as what you put in it. Today, we take a look at two of the best and most popular desktop products on the market: The Arizer Extreme Q and the Volcano Vaporizer.

Cannabis perfume ‘set to become the scent of the summer’ [The Telegraph]

Cannabis has become so ubiquitous that its smell is now being bottled and sold as “the scent of the summer” by one of Britain’s biggest perfume retailers. The Perfume Shop has become the first on the high street to sell Carolina Herrera 212 VIP Men Party Fever, a cannabis themed scent which the shop claims gives the wearer “an edge of risk”.  The controversial fragrance, which comes in a green and blue bottle, retails at £59.99 for 100ml and describes itself as “an energizing potion of vibrant ginger & burning cannabis”.

Marijuana Contains “Alien DNA” From Outside Our Solar System, NASA Confirms [Sci-Tech Universe]

It is a big news, set to shock, amaze, and entertain the world. But unfortunately, it’s got nothing to do with extraterrestrial stoners melding with Earth’s plants. However, since you’re now reading, you’ll almost certainly be interested in this research that looked into the clicking and sharing behaviors of social media users reading content (or not) and then sharing it on social media. 

 

 

FUNDRAISERS/CAMPAIGNS

Support Tony Bower’s Legal Fees [gofundme]

21 June Breaking news! Tony has been released on bail. Tony of Mullaway’s Medical Cannabis has once again been arrested for growing his cannabis medicine! Tony makes cannabis tincture for children with epilepsy and countless others with cancer, chronic pain, ms and the list goes on. Tony Bower has dedicated his life to helping others and now needs your help. All Donations would be greatly appreciated.

Supporting Andrew Katelaris [gofundeme]

Andrew is behind bars again and may be there until the trial starts in November unless a Supreme Court appeal passes. Funds to date have gone to a legal team plus barrister. More recently a lawyer has been engaged to appear in court RE the current matter. 3 lawyers will now have visited Andrew in jail since the beginning of his first in Parklea and now in the Hunter Valley.

LEGALISING CANNABIS [The Greens]

Let’s get real about cannabis. The “war on drugs” has been lost. These days, millions of Australians choose to use cannabis and countries all around the world are changing their laws after realising prohibition does more harm than good. It’s high time we joined them and legalised it. That’s why I’m proud to announce today that the Greens are launching our national plan to legalise cannabis for adult use.

 

 

EVENTS

Unharm Sydney Hackathon [Unharm]

When: Saturday 4th August 2018 from 10-4PM
Where: 60 Margaret Street Sydney

We’re seeking participants for our first Unharm Hackathon, where small teams of participants will put their heads together – and compete against each other – to pitch new and exciting ideas for achieving our vision.

Seedlings [Budding Tech]

MEDICAN WEEKENDS at the BUSH THEATRE, Nimbin [Hemp Embassy]

The next Medican Workshops will be on the weekend of October 20/21 and then January 19/20, 2019. Entry by donation, beside the river at Nimbin’s Bush Theatre. Starting at 11 am and aiming to finish by 420! Learn how to make and use Cannabis as medicine!

Nimbin Medican Workshops on YouTube [Hemp Embassy]

Speaker presentations from the Nimbin Medican Workshop, last weekend 23-24 June 2018, are now online. Big thanks to Disco Sista for documenting the many medican workshops that the Embassy has hosted in Nimbin over the past 3 years. If you’ve missed these amazing gatherings, then you can still watch the speakers online: Click on this link to head to Disco Sista’s Nimbin Medican YouTube Channel.

MardiGrass Hemposium 2018 Talks now Available on YouTube [Hemp Embassy]

Speaker presentations from the Nimbin MardiGrass Hemposium, 4-6 May 2018, are now online. Also check out previous years’ Hemposium speakers as well as our Medican Workshops.

CannaTech

BuddingTech is partnered with the world’s premier medical cannabis conference! Save the date 29-30th October 2018 Sydney.

DRUG WAR OVER! [Radio Documentary]

IF YOU WANT IT: When Phil Bromley moved from Sydney to one of Australia’s most famous and surprisingly largest tourism destinations, Nimbin he felt like he’d found home. Six years on, after observing and experiencing the
relentless police harassment and mainstream media victimization of his new hometown, Phil felt it was time to let the town tell their story in their own words. ‘Exposing The War On Drugs’ is an eight part radio documentary series that looks at how the war on drugs has affected Australia and the rest of the world. Broadcast around Australia on the Community Radio Network, from the 18th April and podcast at https://player.whooshkaa.com/shows/exposing-the-war-on-drugs . With the spotlight on Nimbin, Australia’s most famous “alternative” town, the team from NIM FM, (Nimbin’s local community radio station), explore drug prohibition, medicinal cannabis, addiction and Nimbin itself; and offer some solutions to the costly drug war that has raged since the early 1930s.

 

Entheogenesis Australis Shop Now Open [EGA]

Entheogenesis Australis (EGA) would like to thank the psychedelic community for it’s ongoing support and attendance at our recent Psychedelic Symposium. Since the event we’ve had a lot of inquiries about obtaining copies of the new EGA Journal 4 and other special merchandise. To browse, please feel free to head to the EGA Shop online or click on the items below. This is also your chance to pick up classic and new T-shirt designs. Please keep in mind much of the stock is very limited so don’t delay!