Outrage over weed-infused soda in California

Cannabis-infused soda has sparked outrage in California with critics worried they may end up in children’s hands.

The Seven Cities Beverage Company claims their product, called California Dreamin’, is simply fruit juice, carbonation and the right amount of THC – the chemical compound in cannabis – to get people mildly high, not ‘Cheech and Chonged.’

This comes shortly California legalized the recreational use of marijuana earlier this year, following months of debate including fears that it may make it easier for children to accidentally take the drug.

The new product has been slammed as the exact type of thing health professionals feared:the pot-containing drink could be mistaken for a regular bottle of soda.

A California-based launched a cannabis -infused soda  in an effort to provide an alternative to alcohol

A California-based launched a cannabis -infused soda  in an effort to provide an alternative to alcohol

A California-based launched a cannabis -infused soda  in an effort to provide an alternative to alcohol

Jennifer Jordan, whose company Diamond Bonsai, was one of the first to carry California Dreamin’, said one drink, which can be ordered online or sold at shops licensed to sell cannabis, contains less THC than a joint.

‘A lot of the drinks that are on the market are 100 milligrams and for people who smoke or who are used to THC,’ said Jordan. ‘It’s not only natural and has a delicious flavor, but it’s 10 milligrams, so it’s a low-dose. It’s not intimidating to anyone, so you can casually drink it.’ 

Manufacturers of the drink are marketing it as an alternative to alcoholic drinks.

Dr Noemi Spinazzi, pediatrician at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland, said the design of the cannabis-containing drinks may even attract children.

‘It makes me worried that products that look so enticing can be so easily available in someone’s home,’ she told CBS San Francisco. ‘They may not recognize the difference in the flavor and drinking as much or as little as they feel like drinking.’

Furthermore, Dr Spinazzi said past research has proven that marijuana could negatively impact a child’s developing brain.

However, research on the impact marijuana may have on the developing brain are mixed. 

A 2012 study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found extensive marijuana use as a teenager could lead to cognitive decline. 

While another 2015 study conducted by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center found smoking marijuana in adolescence was not related to physical or mental health issues in adulthood.

Although California Dreamin’ is marketed to adults, Dr Spinazzi said children can still get their hands on it.

‘Truly, we do see children in our emergency room come in with marijuana intoxication, typically because they got their hands on products that were left unsupervised,’ she said.

Jordan said she understands the concern, adding that there are packaging and labeling requirements to ensure that the products are childproof. 

Recreational marijuana use is legalized in eight US states – Maine, California, Colorado, Alaska, Nevada, Washington and Oregon. 

In Colorado, people could buy weed-infused waffles,  cotton candy and extra virgin olive oil.

States where marijuana is legalized for medical use include California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, Minnesota, Michigan, Illinois, Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Arizona, Florida, Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Vermont.

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Illinois Voters Support Marijuana Legalization

The results of an election in Cook County yesterday show that Illinois voters support marijuana legalization. The ballot asked the electorate to decide if recreational cannabis should be legalized in the state. Tallies released this morning, with 98 percent of ballots counted, indicate that voters overwhelmingly said “yes” by a two-thirds margin.

The Referendum

County commissioners voted unanimously to put the question on the ballot in December of last year.

Cook County is the most populous one in Illinois and home to the city of Chicago. More people live in Cook County than in 27 states in the union.

The ballot question specifically mentioned the supply chain necessary to support a legal pot market. The text of the ballot proposition is as follows:

“Shall the State of Illinois legalize the cultivation, manufacture, distribution, testing, and sale of marijuana and marijuana products for recreational use by adults 21 and older subject to state regulation, taxation and local ordinance?”

Despite the positive vote, recreational pot isn’t legal in Illinois just yet. The measure voters passed is a non-binding resolution used to gauge public opinion.

The state legislature legalized the use of medical cannabis in 2013, and the law went into effect the following year.

Voters Share Their Views

Voters on both sides of the question have strongly held views. Leslie Flavian of Skokie told the Chicago Tribune that she voted in favor of the referendum.

“The amount of police manpower that goes into arresting people for marijuana use is a big problem,” she said.

“The number of people who have been in our jails for marijuana use seems ridiculous. There are a lot of other crimes to pursue than for smoking marijuana.”

But other voters would prefer to maintain the status quo. Bridget Marron, a resident of Morton Grove, voted against the referendum.

“I would support this only if it were prescribed by a doctor and not for recreational use,” she said. “I think it’s dangerous to just say OK under any circumstance.”

It’s All About The Benjamins

Supporters of legal pot in Illinois point to other states to support their case. They also want to cash in on the tax revenues a legal marijuana market can generate.

Colorado voters approved a cannabis legalization referendum in 2012 and legal sales began two years later. Since that time, the state has collected more than $700 million in taxes, according to the Colorado Department of Revenue.

But lawmakers need to avoid being too greedy. Some legislators in California are already calling for pot taxes to be lowered, less than four months into that state’s legal marijuana economy.

They argue that levies are so high that many marijuana buyers are sticking with the Golden State’s entrenched black market.

Final Hit: Illinois Voters Support Marijuana Legalization

State lawmakers could now take on the job of legalizing weed in Illinois. But only the state of Vermont has approved recreational marijuana by an action of the state legislature.

Voters took the lead in the other states that have legal weed for adult use.

Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Nevada, Oregon, Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont, and California all legalized recreational marijuana through ballot measures passed by voters.

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Marijuana Sales Dip In January, Still Above Projections

January sales for recreational marijuana took a slight dip from previous months, but are still ahead of initial state projections.

January sales revenue of marijuana came in at $32.8 million, down from December’s $35.8 million in sales.

Numbers were published this week from the Nevada Department of Taxation, and while the numbers went down, it’s still about $8 million higher than projected in the state’s two-year budget.

Reasons for the dip in sales could be because Nevada’s western neighbor California legalized recreational sales starting January 1.

Nevada recreational consumers pay a 10 percent retail excise tax on marijuana, which currently goes into the state’s rainy day fund. In seven months, the tax has brought in $22.8 million. 

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Freedom Leaf Hires Purdue Engineer for Leafceuticals Extraction, Developing Comprehensive Revenue Generation Strategy Other OTC:FRLF

In 2018, FRLF is focusing on building out our revenue streams and acquiring revenue-generating companies like Irie CBD & Green Market Europe

LAS VEGAS, NV, March 22, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Freedom Leaf, Inc. (OTCQB: FRLF), a global leader in the cannabis/hemp ecosphere, today announced that it has hired Purdue University Biomedical Engineering graduate Nick Shi to oversee the Leafceuticals Inc hemp extraction, distillation and refining laboratory in North Las Vegas.

Leafceuticals Inc is Freedom Leaf’s wholly-owned extraction and manufacturing division that uses NuAxon CO2 supercritical extraction to manufacture wholesale hemp CBD oil, terpenes, rare cannabinoids, and other valuable byproducts of industrial hemp.

Clifford Perry, CEO and Co-Founder of Freedom Leaf, explained, “Adding yet another Purdue Engineering graduate to FRLF’s team of experts ensures we bring only the best engineering and scientific design to our Leafceuticals Inc extraction facility and Hempology CBD products.”

Chris Thompson, Freedom Leaf’s Director of Digital Marketing and another Purdue Engineering Alumni, commented, “We expect Nick will be another invaluable addition to the Leafceuticals Inc. production team, helping us increase product quality, optimize production speed, and reduce operating costs.”

In addition to hiring highly-skilled staff, Leafceuticals Inc is also in the process of expanding its facility in North Las Vegas, currently constructing two additional fully-functioning laboratory spaces for hemp CBD extracting, distilling, and refining.

Our test run of hemp flower has already garnered $50,000 in revenue this quarter, and CBD oil from hemp flower should start producing $65,000 a month in sales starting the month of April 2018.  Within 5 months, after the lab is fully functional, the revenue is expected to grow to approximately $100,000 a month. Upon the installation of a new 50 Liter Supercritical CO2 Extractor by NuAxon BioScience, Inc. expected to be installed within 9 months, the revenue is projected to continue growing to $300,000 a month.

Perry went on to say, “In 2018, FRLF is focusing on building out our product revenue streams and acquiring revenue-generating companies, like our recent acquisitions of Irie CBDGreen Market Europe S.L., and LaMarihuana.com. These projects will continue to grow, develop, and significantly increase FRLF shareholder value.”

Earlier in March 2018, FRLF signed an Asset Purchase Agreement to acquire Irie CBD, a California-based product line that has been operating since 2015. Irie CBD formulates, manufactures and distributes CBD tinctures, CBD edibles, CBD topicals and CBD concentrates to retail markets across the country. Irie boasts a large inventory of more than 25 different products and recorded approximately $1.5 million of revenue in 2017. Irie also leases a full manufacturing and processing facility in Oakland, California that is included in the acquisition.

In January 2018, Freedom Leaf completed its acquisition of Green Market Europe S.L. and intends to become a global leader in mass production of high-quality, EU certified industrial hemp and related research. Luis Miguel Santos, managing director of Green Market Europe S.L., reported, “The greenhouse hemp crop to be harvested in 3 weeks has a projected revenue of approximately €160,000 ($200,000).  There is an ever-growing demand for our high-quality hemp products.”  Typically, the demand for hemp products in Europe is so strong that each crop of hemp is sold prior to its harvest.

In 2017, Freedom Leaf acquired LaMarihuana.com, the world’s leading Spanish language cannabis portal with an average 1.7 million hits a month and 1.2 million likes on Facebook. As part of the acquisition, Freedom Leaf additionally acquired Marihuana-Medicinal.com, which is one of the largest medical cannabis information websites in Spanish with over 122,000 page visits a month.

About Freedom Leaf®

Freedom Leaf, Inc., The Marijuana Legalization Company®, is a fully-reporting and audited, publicly-traded company trading under the symbol (OTCQB: FRLF), a group of diversified, international, vertically-integrated Cannabis/Hemp/CBD businesses and media companies.

Freedom Leaf, Inc. is a leading, go-to resource in the cannabis, medical and recreational marijuana, CBD and industrial hemp industries.  It is involved in mergers and acquisitions in these industries, including acceleration and spin offs of new companies involved in those industries.

Freedom Leaf Inc.‘s flagship publication is Freedom Leaf Magazine, The Good News in Marijuana Reform. The company produces a portfolio of news, print and digital multi-media verticals, websites, and web advertising, for the ever-changing emerging cannabis, medical marijuana and industrial hemp industry.  The Company also controls LaMarihuana.com, the world’s leading Spanish publication focused on these industries.

Freedom Leaf, Inc. does not handle, grow, sell, or dispense marijuana or related products.

All of our European activities are in full compliance with relevant EU laws.

Investor relations information can be found on the FreedomLeafInc.com company website.

Safe Harbor Statement

Statements in this press release that are not strictly historical are “forward-looking” statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These forward-looking statements generally can be identified by phrases such as Freedom Leaf, Inc. or its management “believes,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “foresees,” “forecasts,” “estimates” or other words or phrases of similar import. Similarly, statements herein that describe the Company’s business strategy, outlook, objectives, plans, intentions or goals also are forward-looking statements. All such forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to differences include the uncertainty regarding viability and market acceptance of the Company’s products and services, changes in relationships with third parties, the changing regulatory environments governing the Company’s products and services, and other factors described in the Company’s periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Reports on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q.


Raymond Medeiros
PR and Business Development Director
Phone: 415-601-1974
Freedom Leaf, Inc.

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Gov. Phil Murphy looks to legal-pot states to predict revenue – News – Burlington County Times

TRENTON — Gov. Phil Murphy looked to four states with legalized recreational marijuana as a guide for calculating the $60 million in new tax money legalization could bring into New Jersey. 

Treasury officials say they examined revenues for the first year of legalized recreational cannabis from Colorado, Nevada, Oregon and Washington and considered those states’ populations as compared to New Jersey’s and arrived at the $60 million figure.

Murphy hopes New Jersey joins the nine states and District of Columbia in approving recreational pot, fulfilling a campaign promise and reversing the resolutely anti-drug policies of his Republican predecessor, Chris Christie.

“We examined other states that already have a legalized mechanism in place and took a conservative estimate based on the revenue they generated in Year One of legalization, keeping in mind that there are differences in the various tax mechanisms and the size and nature of these markets,” said Treasury spokeswoman Jennifer Sciortino.

Murphy’s budget proposal, which the Democratic former Goldman Sachs executive unveiled last week, calls for legalized cannabis by January, but lawmakers are taking a cautious approach.

The estimate is far below the $300 million in revenue Murphy estimated on the campaign trail and that liberal-leaning groups, such as New Jersey Policy Perspective, also endorsed.

Policy Perspective director of government and public affairs Brandon McKoy said the administration was right to take a conservative estimate and that including the figure in the budget amounted to the administration “planting a flag” to show it intends to push for legalization.

But the effort appears to be moving slowly in the Legislature, and Republicans say they view that as a sign legalization doesn’t have enough support to pass the Democrat-led Legislature.

“A number of legislators remain opposed, which would turn that $60 million into a zero,” said Republican Assemblyman Brian Rumpf, who opposes legalization and sits on the oversight committee that is considering the issue.

Republican state Sen. Declan O’Scanlon says he’s undecided on the issue but thinks the discussion of fiscal year 2019 budget revenues is probably moot.

“If they did (have the votes), they’d put the bill up,” he said.

Democrats say it’s important to adopt a deliberative approach. Democratic Assemblyman and oversight committee chairman Joe Danielsen is holding hearings across the state on the issue and cautioned that it’s too early for legislators to have made up their minds.

Bill Caruso, an attorney and a former Democratic legislative aide, is on the steering committee of New Jersey United for Marijuana, which supports legalization. He said he views the governor’s estimate as a sign that legalization is a priority and moving forward despite a slow pace.

“I think we’re marching toward an inevitability,” he said.

Murphy has said he backs legalization on “social justice” grounds, specifically over concerns that poor people of color suffer disproportionately from cannabis being illegal.

But he also is relying on the revenue to help fund other promises, such as higher pension payments and school aid.

Lawmakers and Murphy have until June 30 to enact a balanced budget.

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Nevada’s January Tax Revenues Reach $5.54M; Represent Stable Market

Nevada’s legal cannabis sales continue to outpace projections as January tax revenues reached $5.54 million, according to Department of Taxation figures outlined by Las Vegas Weekly. The revenues represent a stable market that has topped $5 million in tax revenues in four straight months.

It’s the fourth-highest total since the state launched its recreational cannabis program: October’s $5.8 million in tax revenues still holds as the state record, followed by $5.7 million in December, and $5.5 million in November.

Wholesale taxes – 15 percent on both recreational and medical products paid by cultivation and production facilities – represented $2.26 million of the revenues, while the 10 percent excise tax on sales was about $3.28 million.

The state projected tax revenues of $5 million a month from July 2017 to July 2019, totaling $120 million. Taxation Department Director Bill Anderson told Las Vegas Weekly that the “collections to date are around 70 percent of what was projected for the year.”

“Taxable sales of adult-use marijuana accounted for about $200 million of the total statewide taxable sales for the period of July through December 2017 and about 15 percent of the growth in taxable sales for that period compared to the year prior.” – Anderson in a Mar. 1 press release   

Wholesale tax funds are used by state and local agencies to regulate the industry and for school funding. Excise tax revenues are deposited in the rainy day fund.

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