Hemp News, a compilation of international news stories about hemp and cannabis, is a public service of Campaign for the Restoration and Regulation of Hemp (CRRH) and The Hemp & Cannabis Foundation (THCF). All material included herein is provided free of charge for political and educational purposes under the US federal "Fair Use Doctrine". This material may only be used for political and educational purposes without express written consent.

U.S.: House Bill Introduced To Overturn Ban On VA Physicians Recommending Medical Marijuana

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"Veterans Equal Access Act" would allow VA physicians to discuss medical marijuana with their patients without federal censure

U.S. House Representatives Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), along with 10 bipartisan Congressional cosponsors on Thursday introduced the "Veterans Equal Access Act" (VEAA), marking a concerted federal effort to allow our country's veterans to become medical marijuana patients in states where it's legal. The VEAA would simply allow Veterans Affairs (VA) physicians to discuss and recommend medical marijuana to their patients, a right enjoyed by physicians outside of the VA system.

"Post traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury are just as damaging and harmful as any injuries that are visible from the outside," said Blumenauer, the bill's author. "Sometimes even more so because of the devastating effect they can have on a veteran's family.

"We should be allowing these wounded warriors access to the medicine that will help them survive and thrive, including medical marijuana, not treating them like criminals and forcing them into the shadows," Blumenauer said. "It's shameful."

California: Attorney General Kamala Harris Says Legal Marijuana Is Inevitable

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Legalized marijuana is inevitable, California Attorney General Kamala Harris admitted this week, and she has no "moral opposition" to that happening and is "not opposed" it, she said.

This comes as something of a surprise, since Harris won reelection in California last month by beating the pro-marijuana Republican candidate, Ron Gold, reports RT.com. But while Harris said pot legalization has a "certain inevitability," she didn't actually endorse it.

Harris, the consummately cautious politician, hedged her bets by claiming she had "concerns" over the law enforcement implications of legalization.

"I am not opposed to the legalization of marijuana,” Harris told Buzzfeed News in an interview. “I'm the top cop, and so I have to look at it from a law enforcement perspective and a public safety perspective.

"I think we are fortunate to have Colorado and Washington be in front of us on this and figuring out the details of what it looks like when it’s legalized,” Harris said. “We're watching it happen right before our eyes in Colorado and Washington.

"I don't think it’s gonna take too long to figure this out,” Harris said to Buzzfeed. “I think there's certain inevitability about it."

U.S.: Company Begins Sales of CBD Oil For Pain

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Ramoil Management, Ltd on Tuesday announced that RAMO Bio-Med, Inc., its wholly owned subsidiary, has now completed the R&D, printing and packaging and has begun the initial product rollout of "RAMO CBD Pain" product line, utilizing proprietary formulas and a proprietary high CBD, extremely low THC cannabis strain, through Natural Elements Group, Inc. in California.

Further, RAMO Bio-Med, Inc. also consulted with Natural Elements Group, Inc. to formulate their own THC product line as well, the company announced.

RAMO Bio-Med, Inc. is presently ramping up production and said it will soon be able to ship its proprietary "RAMO CBD Pain" formula to all 50 states as well as internationally. As for THC, RAMO Bio-Med, Inc. will act as a consultant and formulator in each state to assist local state licensed growers to develop their own private label THC lines and brands for their respective state markets.

"Ramoil Management and RAMO Bio-Med are now open for business!," said Michael Goeree, Ramoil Management's chairman, president and CEO.

About Ramoil Management, Ltd.

Ramoil Management, Ltd. (RAMO) is a development stage company. The company is an online wholesaler of e-cigarettes containing nutraceutical vapor oils, e-cigarette delivery systems and hydroponic lighting and nutrients.

California: Green Cures Announces Merger, Launches First Online Ad Campaign

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Green Cures & Botanical Distribution Inc. on Wednesday announced that it intends to merge with Green Cures Inc. ("GCI"), a California corporation and the major controlling shareholder of Green Cures. Green Cures management also announced that following the planned merger, the Company intends to continue its strategic focus on the development of concepts related to nutritional, sports, functional beverage, hemp-infused, and body care products.

GCI owns the brand Green Magic, a Registered Mark, and the brand Green Cures, a Registered Mark.

Green Cures management noted that becoming a fully reporting company has been one of management's top priorities, and if successful, management said it anticipates that this strategic merger will enable Green Cures to become fully a reporting company with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, following which management plans to seek to have the Company's shares traded on the OTC QB or other over-the-counter market.

GCI management said it will seek during the next approximately two-and-a-half months to obtain the necessary audited financial statements. Green Cures management said it anticipates that at closing, GCI will transfer all of its intellectual property and registered marks to Green Cures.

Management of Green Cures said it plans to complete the merger and become fully reporting during the first quarter of the year 2015, after which the Company said it will seek to have its shares accepted for trading on the OTC QB or other over-the-counter market.

U.S.: Marijuana Rating Website RateMyStrain.com Launches

RateMyStrain.com(screencap)

Northsight Capital, Inc. on Thursday announced the launch of what it called "the first marijuana strain rating website," www.RateMyStrain.com. The site offers a free service where anyone can discreetly search, rate, review, discuss, and learn about the medical or recreational effects of more than 750 marijuana strains.

RateMyStrain.com also allows users and dispensaries to post their own new strains on the site for others to see and review.

Legalized marijuana industries (medical and recreational) are so new and rapidly expanding that people are often unfamiliar and uninformed of all the effects that come from using different marijuana strains, whether for recreational or medical purposes.

RateMyStrain.com says it provides users with one of the largest online libraries of marijuana strains that will allow them to search for strains based on: strain type (indica, sativa, hybrid), strain name, effects, rank, medical or recreational usages, and more.

Another feature on RateMyStrain.com is the “Suggest a Strain” option, which allows users to suggest a marijuana strain to be added to RateMyStrain.com’s library of marijuana strains. This feature is vital in the swiftly developing marijuana industries where dispensaries are constantly growing their own exclusive, one-of-a-kind marijuana strains.

RateMyStrain.com is a sister site to www.WeedDepot.com. Cannabis industry businesses will be able to cross-advertise on both sites.

Maine: Two Marijuana Legalization Measures Could Be On 2016 Ballot

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Maine voters could be looking at not one but two marijuana legalization measures on the 2016 ballot, if two competing groups are both successful at qualifying for the ballot.

Legalize Maine, based in the northeastern part of the state, on Wednesday announced a plan to have its own measure on the ballot, joining the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), which has already announced its referendum, reports Sarah Delage atr WCSH.

Paul McCarrier of Legalize Maine said the group is focused on jobs. According to McCarrier, marijuana legalization would bring economic development to rural areas.

McCarrier said his group is moving forward with its own legalization plan after talking with people in other states who have worked with the Marijuana Policy Project.

"We are not interested in being subjugated to MPP or the Washington D.C. policy," McCarrier said. "These will be competing measures and we will win."

MPP, based in the District of Columbia, plans to put a similar question on the 2016 ballot. The group put the question to voters in Portland and South Portland, where it was approved, and in Lewiston, where voters rejected it.

"Ideally it makes sense to have one initiative," said David Boyer of MPP. "But if we can't see eye to eye then we will move forward and we hope voters choose the plan that will make marijuana legal and stop punishing adults for using a substance safer than alcohol."

Oregon: Marijuana Legalization Activists Send Open Letter to Oregon DAs

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Oregon marijuana legalization activists involved in the successful campaign for Measure 91, which legalized cannabis for adults 21 and older in the state, on Thursday sent an open letter to district attorneys statrewide.

Open Letter to Oregon District Attorneys

Criminal justice advocates and leaders call upon you to start now on implementing important drug policy reforms.

Although Oregon voters passed Measure 91 with a 12-point margin, implementation of this better, smarter approach to marijuana policy will not be complete until the first half of 2016. We don't have to wait until then to start to mitigate the damage done by decades of criminalization, wasted law enforcement time and squandered taxpayer money.

Prosecutors in Oregon's largest county have already decided to dismiss, and stop prosecuting, marijuana-related offenses that would no longer exist under Measure 91. Other county prosecutors should follow Multnomah County's lead.

A strong majority of Oregon voters have directed the state to stop treating marijuana as a crime and to better prioritize our limited law enforcement resources. With so many lives and so much money at stake, waiting would be unreasonable and clearly damaging to Oregon's communities. We should work quickly to limit the damage already caused by a feckless war against marijuana.

We urge you to cease enforcement of marijuana laws that will no longer exist when provisions of Measure 91 take effect in July.

Respectfully,

Anthony Johnson, Director, New Approach Oregon, Chief Petitioner of Measure 91

Global: Oxford Dictionary Names ‘Vape’ 2014 Word of the Year

VapeElectronicCigarette(Watchdog.org)

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

The Oxford Dictionary has named “vape” 2014’s Word of the Year.

Oxford defines the verb as “to inhale and exhale the vapour produced by an electronic cigarette or similar device,” reports Lori Grisham at USA Today. It was added to the dictionary in August.

Vape can also be used as a noun for the e-cig, and for the act of inhaling itself, according to Oxford.

“You are 30 times more likely to come across the word vape that you were two years ago, and usage has more than doubled in the past year,” Oxford said of the decision.

Runners-up for Word of the Year included “budtender,” a person whose job it is to serve customers in a cannabis dispensary or shop.

Photo: Watchdog.org

California: Nestdrop Offers 20% Off Medical Marijuana Delivery With Cyber Monday Deal Dec. 1

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Available on Cyber Monday only, Los Angeles residents can get 20 percent off alcohol and medical marijuana deliveries

Popular alcohol and medical marijuana delivery app, Nestdrop, aims to make this year’s Cyber Monday, December 1, the best one yet for Los Angeles.

By using promo code CYBER, Angelenos can receive 20 percent off alcohol and medical marijuana deliveries through the Android and iOS* apps.

Available since June as an alcohol delivery, Nestdrop is the country’s first in-App, on demand medical marijuana delivery service. Medical marijuana patients are required to upload a photo of valid ID and either a doctor’s recommendation or medical marijuana identification card to Nestdrop’s securely encrypted vault to receive approval before ordering.

Nestdrop delivers both medical marijuana and alcohol in an hour.

WHEN: Monday, Dec. 1, 2014
Delivery hours vary by location and service

WHERE: Greater Los Angeles area

*Note: Medical marijuana deliveries are only available on the Android app as of Nov. 19. iOS deliveries will be added in the next few weeks.

Oregon: NextGen Partners With Merry Jan's Cannabis Edibles Bakery

NGMC(NextGenerationManagementCorporation)NextGen

Next Generation Management Corporation on Tuesday announced its wholly owned subsidiary, NextGen Holdings, LLC, has entered the rapidly growing cannabis infused edibles market by signing an agreement with Merry Jan's Edibles, an Oregon based bakery. Both parties have agreed to terms; final partnership agreement is being drafted.

Merry Jan's has more than 30 years baking experience and is currently supplying a small number of existing marijuana dispensaries with a variety of gourmet cookies, brownies and other baked goods and confections. Merry Jan's THC-infused cannabutter is made in-house.

"Now that Measure 91 has passed, legalizing marijuana in Oregon, we will continue to expand operations by strategic partnerships," said Darryl Reed, CEO of NextGen. "Our role in the newly formed partnership will be to assist in the expansion of the brand by hiring sales staff, increase awareness through social media and other forms of mass marketing.

"Merry Jan's is currently working on rolling out a Holiday platter that will include cannabis infused cookies, pecan pie bars, raspberry white chocolate bars and chocolate mint brownies," Reed said.

"NextGen also continues to look for a location in the Portland, Oregon, area to open a licensed dispensary," Reed said.

Next Generation Management Corporation's wholly-owned subsidiary, NextGen Holdings, LLC, was formed to hold its Oregon cannabis assets.

U.S.: Mainstream Gardening Media Group Identifies 'Smoke Your Garden' As Next Big Shift

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

In yet another sign of the epochal changes in public perception towards marijuana, the mainstream Garden Media Group, headquartered in Pennsylvania, has identified "Smoke Your Garden" as the next big garden industry shift.

"With an increasing number of states decriminalizing marijuana, more people will begin growing their own and need seeds, plants and products," Samantha Arcieri of the Garden Media Group told Hemp News on Wednesday. "We’ve concluded that all products associated with the cultivation and growing of marijuana could be the next big ticket items for independent garden centers across the county."

"Garden Centers can capitalize on new laws by carrying products that help people cultivate these plants and can become leaders in the industry," the 2015 Garden Trends Report reads.

"New business opportunities range from tech companies that track seed-to-sale operations to real estate agents who find space for growers," according to the report. "Garden centers can capitalize on new laws by carrying grow lights and hydroponic supplies, plant nutrients and additives, potting soils and growing media, eco-renewable mulch, and eventually cannabis seeds and new cultivars."

"The legal marijuana market is growing at a rate poised to overtake even that of global smartphones!" according to the report.

U.S.: CEO of Marijuana Recipe Website Interviewed by Ganjapreneur

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Matt Gray, CEO of The Stoner's Cookbook, discussed the history of the website and the launch of its new crowd-funded recipe book for cannabis cooking in his recent interview with Ganjapreneur

Ganjapreneur, a website dedicated to cannabis business news and culture, has published an interview with Matt Gray, CEO of The Stoner's Cookbook, a resource for marijuana culinary enthusiasts to find and share infused recipes. In the interview, Gray discussed how he became involved in the project more than a year ago.

"I was the co-founder and CEO of a successful education startup in Toronto called Bitmaker Labs," Gray said. "We trained full-stack software developers and got them jobs at top tech companies across North America.

"After exiting that business I was eager to get into the cannabis industry," Gray said. "I saw it as the opportunity of a lifetime. I met the founders of The Stoner’s Cookbook through a mutual friend and I knew I could help them turn their passion into a high-growth business."

The Stoner's Cookbook currently has over 2.8 million followers on Facebook and boasts millions of website impressions each day. The types of recipes shared, Gray said, vary dramatically.

Global: Voices Against Brain Cancer Partners With Spanish Cannabinoid Research Group

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The Cannabinoid Research Group of Complutense University in Madrid, Spain and Voices Against Brain Cancer, a U.S. foundation headquartered in New York, on Monday announced that a collaborative medical marijuana research alliance has been signed by both organizations.

The consideration of the benefits of marijuana and the compounds contained within the plant known as "cannabinoids" for medicinal purposes is currently a prominent subject matter in North America. In an effort to fast-track the propagation of accurate scientific based information on therapeutic opportunities incorporating cannabinoids, these two groups have formed an exclusive partnership in the United States.

"We have chosen Voices Against Brain Cancer to act as our voice in North America where they will support and herald our efforts," said Manuel Guzmán, chairman of The Cannabinoid Research Group. When asked about the research findings to date, Guzman noted that "published research clearly shows the anticancer action of cannabinoids impacting glioblastoma multiforma (GBM), and how chemotherapy results of tumor reduction are improved upon by adding cannabinoids as part of the treatment regimen."

"We have an obligation to remain open minded about where the cure for brain cancer will come from," said Michael Klipper, chairman of Voices Against Brain Cancer. "Manuel Guzmán and his research team are world class leaders in the clinical research of cannabinoids and cancer."

Massachusetts: Town Tries To Ban Tobacco

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The small town of Westminster, Massachusetts, made national headlines recently when local health authorities tried to make it the first place in the United States where no one would be allowed to buy cigarettes, e-cigs, cigars and chewing tobacco.

"The Board of Health permitting these establishments to sell these dangerous products than, when used as directed, kill 50 percent of its users, ethically goes against our public health mission," claimed Andrea Crete, chairwoman of the Board of Health, reports Katharine Seelye of The New York Times.

The plan resulted in what The Times called "white-hot fury" among the townspeople. Although only 17 percent of Westminster residents smoke -- many say they have never touched tobacco and find the habit disgusting -- they see the ban as an attack on individual liberties. It would also cripple eight retailers in town who primarily sell tobacco products.

A petition sits on the front counter at Vincent's Country Store in Westminster; it attracts more signatures every day. At last count, 1,200 people had signed, in a town of 7,400.

Colorado: These Are The Good Old Days - Things About To Change In Marijuana Market

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

This may be the golden age of marijuana in Colorado, and things are about to change.

Supply-and-demand is ever-so-slowly leading to lower prices on the recreational front, and legislative changes are in the offing that could make it more difficult for doctors to authorize medicinal cannabis for severe pain, reports Jeremy P. Mayer at The Denver Post. Voters could be asked to add a special tax onto medical marijuana, and there's even been some reckless talk about discontinuing medicinal cannabis altogether, lumping all cannabis sales into the recreational market.

"It is fluid," said Samn Kamin, a law professor at the University of Denver. "Everyone knew this was going to happen.

"This is the first-of-its-kind regulation," Kamin said. "We knew we weren't going to get everything right the first time."

Medical marijuana caregivers in Colorado may grow up to six plants for up to five patients, for a total of 30 plants, but some get a waiver to grow more. As of May, the state had about 5,000 registered caregivers.

A bill will be introduced in the Colorado Legislature next session to reduce the number of plants that caregivers can grow for their patients, and require the caregivers to go through a much more stringent approval process with state health officials.

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