California has now joined a number of states changing their approach to marijuana, which marks exciting times for national drug reform. If you’re over the age of 21, it is now legal to grow up to six plants and possess up to an ounce (!) on your person.
While the state’s residents have already been celebrating the news, tracking down a spot to purchase your recreational weed may prove a little difficult in these early days.
However, this may not indicate the end of drug dealers pedaling marijuana, as taxes are expected to raise the retail cost of the pot up to 70 percent higher than the street price. Nonetheless, It’s a very, very happy new year for Californians.
Mike Tyson has been a boxer, an actor, a monologuist, and an animated detective, but now it looks like the former heavyweight champion wants to take a bite out of California’s new legal weed game.
According to the Blast, Tyson and two business partners—Robert Hickman and Jay Strommen—have plans to build a massive “cannabis resort” on 40 acres of desert land in California City. The trio broke ground on the property back in December and are getting things rolling now that California has officially legalized marijuana.
It seems like the rest of the Mojave Desert land, though, will earn Tyson Ranch its “resort” title. The Beast reports that there will be “premium ‘glamping’ campgrounds and cabins” for people to stay in, an amphitheater for live music, and a factory for marijuana edibles.
The resort’s land isn’t far from Edwards Air Force Base, and the Blast reports that the ranch will be staffed mostly by veterans and will be committed to helping those in the armed forces, as CBD, a marijuana compound that won’t get you high, has been used to treat PTSD.
Read more at Vice
Across six top-secret locations in the Riverina and Central West, a historic harvest is underway.
Over 400 hectares of the state’s first-ever opium poppy crop is being stripped and chemically analyzed. Cootamundra mixed-farmer David Forsyth sowed 24 hectares of the plant in June.
“The alkaloid content was 3.6 percent, we thought we might do four, but it was a terrible season; cold and after sowing it didn’t rain for four months.”
Poppy crops grown on fertile soils by the best growers in Tasmania typically yield three tonnes per hectare and assay more than 3 percent.
The venture could return an estimated $100 million to NSW in the next decade. However, the global oversupply of opiate material put great pressure on Tasmanian growers last year, and the lackluster performance of the crop in Victoria, who legalized it in 2014, has reportedly seen a number of farmers ditching it altogether. But Mr. Forsyth still believes it has potential.
“We’re increasing and will do 38 hectares next year, I’ve learned a lot and couldn’t have done it without the help of my wife Janelle, my son Brendan and his wife Ruby,” he said.
The Border Mail
After four of five statewide marijuana legalization ballot initiatives were approved by voters in 2016, no additional states ended cannabis prohibition in 2017 (though New Hampshire did decriminalize possession of the drug and West Virginia allowed its medical use).
If marijuana policy advocates’ plans come to fruition in the new year, 2018 will bring about the first legalization laws passed by lawmakers; to date, all eight states to end cannabis prohibition did it through voter initiatives.
Here’s a look at the states that are most likely to enact marijuana reforms in 2018:
• New Jersey
While Vermont and New Jersey are seen as most likely to pass marijuana legalization bills through their legislatures in 2018, advocates are also working to build momentum for bills to end prohibition in a number of other states next year. Among those are Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois and Rhode Island, any or all of which could potentially send legalization legislation to their governor’s desks in the coming months.
During a special meeting of council on Dec. 15 ahead of the presentation of the city’s 2018 operating budget, the mayor delivered a motion that requests the province back off on naming certain cities as potential homes for these LCBO-like, weed selling stores before the municipalities themselves have had the opportunity to consult with their residents and figure out proper zoning for these stores.
As the province has previously shared, the sale of the drug will be done through a storage system similar to and managed by, the LCBO. As of now, the province’s booze distributor is in the process of meeting with municipalities that have been identified to be future homes for these cannabis stores.
According to Mayor Henry, he met with officials from the LCBO, Municipal Affairs, and the Attorney General’s Office ahead of the regional council meeting on Dec. 13 to discuss the potential location, along with other questions the city has raised pertaining to the issue of legalization.
The Oshawa mayor has also previously raised concerns about the impacts on people’s health and wellbeing who live in apartments with shared ventilation systems, or how people smoking weed in their backyards will impact those around them who may choose not to smoke.
“There are far too many unanswered questions,” said Councillor Nester Pidwerbecki. “We need a lot of these questions that are asked in this motion to be answered before we can move forward.”
Read the full article at The Oshawa Express
Fungi have flourished on Earth for quite a while, possibly more than 2 billion years. They’ve evolved some impressive tricks during that time, including many that are either fascinating or frightening to humans — and sometimes a bit of both.
And then there are magic mushrooms, also known as “shrooms.” These fungi are famed for their psychedelic effects on people who ingest them, an ancient practice dating back to prehistoric “mushroom cults” and shamans who may have inspired Santa Claus. Yet even after centuries of experience, we are only now demystifying many of the magical — and medicinal — powers these mushrooms possess.
Psychedelic fungi fall into two general categories, each characterized by a distinct mix of mind-altering ingredients that make their mushrooms “magic.”
The largest, most common group produces hallucinogens called psilocybin and psilocin and features more than 180 species from every continent except Antarctica. These diverse fungi hail from roughly a dozen genera, but are often lumped together as “psilocybin mushrooms.” Most belong to the genus Psilocybe, including well-known species like P. cubensis (“gold top”) and P. semilanceata (“liberty cap”).
Read more at Mother Nature Network
Sometime soon in Massachusetts, you’ll be able to walk into a cafe, ask for a marijuana product, and consume it right there without heading home first.
The state agency responsible for regulating legalized marijuana approved a policy on Monday that will allow for such establishments, so-called “cannabis cafes,” to open — where one can buy a cannabis product and then legally consume it on the premises, just like buying a drink at a bar.
Like bartenders in restaurants in bars, marijuana servers must be trained properly. Such training will focus on helping them identify customers who are too intoxicated to be served more. The commission also agreed that businesses licensed to serve cannabis, should not be allowed to serve alcohol.
Cannabis proponents like Michael Latulippe are pleased with the prospect of on-premises cannabis businesses. Latulippe is a registered medical marijuana user and a member of the state’s Cannabis Advisory Board.
Public safety officials still have concerns. Walpole Police Chief John Carmichael is another member of the commission. He says its important regulations are put in place to prevent people from driving while under the influence of marijuana.
Read more at New England Public Radio
When Clark Martin tripped on magic mushrooms for the first time, he felt as though he’d been knocked off a boat and left for dead.
“It was like falling off the boat in the open ocean, looking back, and the boat is gone. Then the water disappears. Then you disappear,” he told Business Insider in January.
But Martin wasn’t alone. Two researchers from New York University were by his side to guide him through his trip. It was an experience that Martin had signed up for as part of one of the first large-scale clinical trials of magic mushrooms for depression and anxiety.
The results of that study were so promising that they jump-started a sort of renaissance in psychedelic research that’s now being led by a handful of non-profit research organizations and startups.
“The whole ‘you’ thing just kinda drops out into a more timeless, more formless presence,” Martin said.
Martin was one of several people who had been diagnosed with cancer and developed what’s known as end-of-life anxiety and depression. Deep feelings of hopelessness had driven him to near-complete isolation, ruining his relationships with his family and friends and creating a vicious cycle where he constantly felt lonely, trapped, and afraid.
Read the full article at Business Insider
CANANDAIGUA — People have been asking Canandaigua Mayor Ellen Polimeni about the opioid crisis, how serious of a problem it is and what parts of the community are primarily affected.
Narcan is a brand name for naloxone, a medication that almost instantly reverses the effects of an opioid overdose, virtually saving people from the brink of death.
Lynn Seaward, director of community-based services at Finger Lakes Area Counseling & Recovery Agency (FLACRA), talked about various local programs available to help drug and alcohol addicts, including peer services where those recovering can relate to and help abusers find the best services for their individual situations.
FLACRA also recently acquired a mobile crisis van that allows staff and peer counselors to go directly to people in crisis or overdosing. Staff also work with law enforcement and emergency personnel in rescuing people and educating families on the problems that lead to addiction and where to find help.
Read the full article at Daily Messenger
Citing the benefits of widespread marijuana reform throughout the United States, a handful of activists are now mounting a campaign to push for the legalization of psychedelic mushrooms.
As reported by The Guardian:
Kevin Saunders, a mayoral candidate for the city of Marina, just south of the San Francisco Bay, has filed a proposal that would exempt adults over the age of 21 from any penalties over possessing, growing, selling or transporting psychedelic psilocybin mushrooms.
If he can get 365,880 voter signatures by the end of April 2018, the California Psilocybin Legalization Initiative will be placed on the statewide ballot.
A profound magic mushroom experience helped Saunders get over a “debilitating five-year heroin addiction” in 2003 when he was 32. “I got to the root of why I made a conscious decision to become a heroin addict; I’ve been clean almost 15 years.”
The study has since been verified by sufferers all over the country who tell their stories on Web forums. The Atlantic reports that one contributor wrote that he has been taking a preventative dose every 60 days for more than four years now, and he’s spent “the vast majority of the last four years completely pain-free.”
Read more at PersonalLiberty
OREGON — Oregon could become home to the legal, recreational use of magic mushrooms. A campaign to legalize Psilocybin, informally known as magic mushrooms, is making its way to voters.
Psilocybin, after all, is an off-patent, organic agent which creates change through the psychedelic experience it provides, such that a single experience often changes a person’s disposition moving forward,” the group wrote in an open letter to voters. “And the psilocybin model, which includes preparation, psychedelic facilitation, and integration afterward, doesn’t just match the effectiveness of a typical ‘meds and therapy’ regimen. Where typical interventions fail, psilocybin therapy, with impressive frequency, breaks through.
Psilocybin is a naturally occurring hallucinogen found in certain species of mushrooms. There are an estimated 180 species of mushrooms that contain psilocybin. Users typically experience hallucinations when they eat the mushrooms.
Continue Reading at Patch
Several new rules and regulations for legal cannabis in Colorado have been finalized and will go into effect January 1, 2018, according to the Marijuana Enforcement Division. The MED had been holding stakeholder meetings and accepting public feedback on many of the proposed rules since September; they include updates to packaging regulations, a new state program for medical cannabis research and more.
Many of the new rules are a result of 2017’s legislative session, with amendments to existing laws and new bills forcing updates that affect both the industry workforce and consumers. HB 1034, HB 1261, SB 187 and SB 192 will change employee training methods, business location transfers, product contaminate testing, concentrate wholesalers and packaging and labeling.
Most of the rules were made to increase youth, consumer, and employee safety, the MED says, such as new packaging and labeling requirements that are designed to decrease interaction with minors.
The MED will continue to issue industry bulletins and tips for stakeholders on how to comply with the new rules as they go into effect.
Read the full article at West Word
Guwahati: The flourishing illegal opium cultivation in eastern Arunachal Pradesh has become a major area of concern for security agencies, with the state government miserably failing to tackle this menace. The drug mafia, with some help from Naga rebels, continues to call the shots in the frontier state, where people are reluctant to give up the practice of poppy farming in absence of any alternative for their economic survival.
It is significant than that Arunachal Pradesh tops the list of states with illegal poppy cultivation.
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in its last report of 2015 claims to have destroyed poppy fields spread over 399 acres in eastern Arunachal Pradesh.
But as per NGOs, the state still has around 10,000 hectares of opium fields and the annual yield of opium is around 100 tonnes, an average of 10 kg a hectare.
For NCB, opium cultivation in eastern Arunachal Pradesh has become an eyesore. Despite the regular destruction of poppy fields by the authorities, a large section of people is still not ready to give up the practice. This is a huge challenge in the fight against drug smuggling.
According to the bureau officials, apart from Lohit and Anjaw districts, which share borders with Myanmar and China, there are reports of poppy cultivation from Changlang, Longding, Upper Siang and Tirap districts too.
Read more at The Asian Age
A trade organization in the United Kingdom that oversees the rapidly expanding cannabidiol (CBD) and hemp market, has published a study that shows the use of CBD oil in the U.K. has doubled in a single year.
The Cannabis Trades Association U.K.’s (CTAUK) figures reveal 250,000 people are now using CBD oil to treat their health conditions. CTAUK added that the number of users is up from 125,000 last year, with approximately 1,000 new users each month.
In October 2016, the U.K. government recognized the medicinal value of CBD, stating the cannabinoid has “restoring, correcting, or modifying” properties. This admission has allowed suppliers to sell CBD by obtaining a medicinal license, which is a lengthy and strict process. Many retailers have been able to circumvent the process by selling CBD products as food supplements.
Most recently, the public debate around medical cannabis in the U.K. has seen a lot of attention, with a bill to legalize going through its first parliamentary reading Oct. 10 unopposed. That same day, a protest incited by a member of parliament and cannabis activist Paul Flynn took place in front of the Parliament building in London.
More of this news at Marijuana.com
ASHLAND, Ore. — Marijuana businesses gathered Sunday at the Oregon Marijuana Business Conference to share new ideas and knowledge about the fast-growing industry and network.
Cannabis industry leaders and activists believe Oregon has the potential to show the rest of the United States what marijuana can do for the economy. Some even say the cannabis industry can become Oregon’s new timber industry if the state is able to break down marijuana’s stigma.
Although recreational marijuana is legal in Arizona, Arizona native Wes Parks moved to Oregon to start his pot farm.
Leaders at the Oregon Marijuana Business Conference Agree and say Oregon is on the brink of leading the nation in the cannabis industry. Rogers said it’s rapidly growing throughout the US. In the last five years, nine states have legalized recreational marijuana.
“We were legalized before a lot of other states are so this gives us not only advantage to tourism or whatever but this also gives us a competitive advantage in the industry all around as other states begin to follow suit,” Rogers said.
Marijuana activist said in order for Oregon to take on that lead, marijuana needs to be federally legal.
Read the full article at KDRV.COM
Ayahuasca is a potent psychedelic that’s recently come into vogue among hipsters backpacking around South America.
The Nature journal Scientific Reports has just published a new piece of research on ayahuasca, making it the largest and most authoritative scientific study on the matter to date. The findings suggest this Amazonian “Shaman’s Brew” might be linked to improved everyday well-being, and potentially offer a treatment for alcoholism and depression.
Researchers from University College London (UCL) and the University of Exeter in the UK sifted through the Global Drug Survey data of over 96,000 people worldwide and found 527 ayahuasca users. This group reported higher general well-being, along with less problematic alcohol and drug use, over the previous 12 months than other respondents in the survey.
“Recent research has demonstrated ayahuasca’s potential as a psychiatric medicine, and our current study provides further evidence that it may be a safe and promising treatment.”
Read more at IFL Science
Hyderabad: Cannabis oil was used by a 69-year-old woman to treat a breast tumour which was diagnosed by doctors in the West.
There have been testimonies which claimed cannabis oil helped cure cancer. According to researchers, cannabis compounds are found to kill malignant cells. However, trials have not yet been carried out on humans.
Dr. Srinivas C., a senior oncologist, said, “These methods have to be researched to be used at the clinical level. Currently, the protocols are chemotherapy, radiotherapy, surgeries and personalized treatment. There are claims made from time to time.”
Cannabis oil is sold legally in the west as a food supplement. Its medical use has not started. A senior oncologist, on condition of anonymity, said, “The integrated therapy, using the Ayurveda and the modern medicine, has started in certain hospitals in the state. It has been found that every human body requires a different set of medications, dosages, and protocols to treat cancer.”
More of this story at Deccan Chronicle
Dr. Mitchell Gittelman can’t say whether medical marijuana will help any of his patients.
But he can’t say it won’t help them either.
“I think since you’re not going to die from cannabis,” the Salisbury physician said, “it’s reasonable to give people a chance to try it.”
The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission records list a total of 520 eligible medical providers statewide.
“There will probably be pockets of Maryland that are disadvantaged,” Ransom said.
He suspects the number of doctors actively seeing patients is much lower than 520, noting that several on the list are medical directors affiliated with marijuana businesses.
Some fits and starts are to be expected even after the drug becomes available, said Patrick Jameson, executive director of the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission.
Read the full article at Delmarva Now
A compound commonly found in “magic mushrooms” may work some magic on patients struggling with depression.
A study out of Imperial College London recently touted the benefits of psilocybin, the psychoactive compound found naturally in the mushrooms.
Researchers of the paper published in Scientific Reports said the psychedelic compound can hit the “reset button” on brain circuits that contribute to depression.
Researching the psychedelic compound is nothing new.
Dr. George Greer, medical director at Heffter Research Institute in New Mexico, is part of an organization that studies psilocybin to treat cancer, addiction, and other ailments.
In the study out of Imperial College London, 19 patients took 2 doses of psilocybin, a week apart.
Each patient had two brain scans following each dose.
Then, researchers looked at their brains using two imaging methods.
Read the full article at Healthline
A spokesperson for the Winnipeg Police Service says officers are “very aware” of the drug and have made what could be their first seizure of the synthetic stimulant. Testing is pending.
Flakka, which resembles finely ground glass, is chemically similar to “bath salts,” a term used to describe a number of recreational designer drugs (the name derives from instances in which the drugs were sold disguised as true bath salts).
It is most commonly snorted or injected, according to Dr. Marc Myer, medical director of the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation in Minnesota.
“It gives an effect that includes euphoria and stimulation that usually lasts for one to two hours,” Myer said. “It can also cause undue side effects like psychosis, homicidal behavior, suicidal behavior, and that makes it difficult to treat these patients.”
Flakka emerged in the southern United States in 2013 and has been making its way into more mainstream drug use, Myer says. Florida has seen a significant surge in the drug’s popularity in recent years.
Flakka emerged in the southern United States in 2013 and has been making its way into more mainstream drug use, Myer says. Florida has seen a significant surge in the drug’s popularity in recent years.
Read more on CBC News