Following important cannabis news articles every day can be a real burn-out, we know. That’s why the Emerald rolls up a chronicle of the headiest news hits, and passes them to you at the end of each week. We Bring You: The Dime.
DEA Expands Opportunities to Grow Weed for Research
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) seems to be back tracking their decades-long stance on medical cannabis. Or, at least, access to research it. Specifically, the DEA announced this month that it “continues to prioritize efforts to expand access to marijuana for research in the U.S.” While the first part of that statement is arguable; the DEA committed to registering more cultivators to allow them to grow weed for medical/scientific research. According to Science Magazine, some companies already received a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to do so. Those include Scottsdale Research Institute, the Biopharmaceutical Research Company and “Steven Groff, a physician in York, Pennsylvania,” the magazine reports. Additionally, the DEA says they’ll send more MOAs in the future.
Texas Senators Approve Medical Cannabis Bill, but Make Major Changes
On Tuesday, May 25th, Texas Senators approved HB 1535. The bill aims to expand the state’s Compassionate Use Program. Expansion includes raising the THC cap from .5% to 1%, reports The Dallas Morning News. It also adds all forms of cancer and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) to the list of qualifying conditions. However, Senators chose not to include “chronic pain” patients in the program, according to KXAN. But — Texans will have to wait. Because Senators made such major changes to the bill, it will need to head back to the Texas House of Representative for re-approval. In the meantime, another bill, HB 441 — which decreases penalties for pot — is currently scheduled for a Senate hearing. Until then, Texas remains “one of only 14 states with no effective medical cannabis law, and one of only 19 that still imposes jail time for simple possession of cannabis,” reports the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP).
New York Regulators Ban Delta-8 and Delta-10 THC
This May, New York health officials updated regulations on hemp-derived cannabinoids. Specifically, the New York Department of Health released new rules “clarifying that hemp-derived cannabinoid products may not contain synthetic cannabinoids, or cannabinoids created through isomerization,” reports Ganjapreneur. The move effectively banned delta-8 THC and delta-10 THC in New York, which joins states like Colorado and Alaska, reports, the publication adds. While these are naturally occurring cannabinoids, they are rare. So some operators convert them from other cannabinoids like CBD. Whatever the source, these products are growing in popularity. One New York retailer — Empire CBD — who’s biggest seller is such products, shut its six shops in response to the new rules, reports Syracuse News. The shop now plans to move to Florida.