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Ohio: Former NFL Linebacker, Reggie Williams, Says Cannabis Saved Leg

Reggie Willams, Cincinnati Bengals

Former NFL linebacker Reggie Williams has joined the growing list of former pro-athletes advocating for cannabis

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

Reggie Williams, who played 14 seasons from '76 to '89 with the Cincinnati Bengals, has been using a cannabis Cannabidiol (CBD) patch to fight chronic leg pain. Williams decided against treating the pain with opioids that could lead to a lifetime of drug addiction while undergoing treatment for the leg injury. Williams stated, "I didn't want to go from all those surgeries to being an addict for the rest of my life in order to stay sane" while dealing with chronic pain.

United States: Cannabis Is Safer Than Opioids, According To Several Studies

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By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

In the midst of an opioid epidemic in the United States, research studies show that using cannabis to treat chronic pain is a safer, less addictive alternative to narcotics.

In 2014, in a study conducted by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health researchers found that “in states where medical cannabis is legal to manage chronic pain and other conditions, the annual number of deaths from prescription drug overdose is 25 percent lower than in states where cannabis use is illegal. The study was published in the Aug. 25th issue of JAMA Internal Medicine.

Israel: Cannabis Can Help Heal Bone Fractures, According To Study

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Cannabidiol, a Major Non-Psychotropic Cannabis Constituent Enhances Fracture Healing and Stimulates Lysyl Hydroxylase Activity in Osteoblasts

According to the research, the administration of the non-psychotropic component significantly helps heal bone fractures

By Michael Bachara
Hemp News

Cannabis was used as a medical remedy by societies around the world for centuries. Therapeutic use of cannabis was banned in most countries in the 1930s and '40s due to reefer madness campaigns without merit. Significant medical benefits of cannabis in alleviating symptoms of such diseases as Parkinson's disease, cancer, multiple sclerosis and post-traumatic stress disorder are being discovered by researchers throughout the world.

United Kingdom: Liberal Democrats Add Marijuana Legalization To Platform

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Liberal Democratic leaders in the United Kingdom announced Friday that they plan on pushing for marijuana regulation and taxation as part of their political platform. Research by the liberal Democrats revealed that 87,247 police caseloads related to cannabis were opened in 2015, equaling an estimated 1,044,180 police hours and £31 million (more than USD$40 million) in enforcement, the Independent reports.

“The honest and pragmatic response is to take responsibility for this situation and regulate the market,” the manifesto states. “Liberal Democrats will take back control from the criminal gangs and protect young people by introducing a legal, regulated market for cannabis.”

Marijuana is a Class B substance in the U.K. and possession carries a five-year jail term. Dealers can be sentenced to up to 14 years.

The party's plan would legalize cannabis use for adults 18 and over, would limit THC content, and would require that all marijuana products contain CBD. The party says that "skunk" (marijuana that has been bred to remove most, or all, CBD) is responsible for harming the “mental and physical health” of youth.

“The current approach is a disaster for young people…There are no age checks, and no controls on quality or strength,” the party contends. “‘Skunk’ is widespread and the only ID you need to buy it is a £20 note.”

Mexico: Lawmakers Approve Legislation To Legalize Medical Marijuana

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Lawmakers in Mexico have approved the legalization of medical marijuana products. President Enrique Peña Nieto, who has spoken in favor of the measure, must sign it to make it official.

The measure authorizes the Health Ministry to design regulations for the use, importation, and production of pharmaceutical products derived from CBD-dominant/low-THC cannabis. Presently, CBD-infused products may be imported into the country on a case by case basis.

The personal possession of up to five grams of cannabis was decriminalized by Mexican lawmakers in 2009. President Nieto proposed legislation last year to increase this threshold to one ounce.

In 2015, Mexico's Supreme Court ruled that federal anti-drug laws should not trump individuals' rights to grow and consume marijuana for their own personal use.

California: Cannabis Club In Modesto Provides Cannabis Oil For Kids, Support For Parents

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A cannabis club has opened in Modesto, California for children, where they can obtain CBD oil, and families can network with others using cannabis oil to treat their children. Jason David, the president of Jayden’s Journey, named after his son, said the dispensary is necessary because “when a child is sick the whole family is sick.”

Zya Mao is a six-month old patient of the dispensary who suffers from epilepsy. Her father, Jhoson Mao, believes cannabis oils are a better alternative to prescriptions and his daughter’s doctor is not advising against it.

“We noticed… she feels present, her eye is not as wobbly as it used to be,” Mao said in a report from Fox4KC.

Zoe Poe is an eight-year old patient who suffers from ADHD ADD extreme. Sherry Poe, Zoe's mother, said her daughter “started getting ticks” and “crying all the time” while on prescription drugs, and at one point told her mother “she didn’t want to live anymore.” Zoe has been using cannabis oil for a year and a half.

“She sleeps. She’s gained weight,” Poe said. “She’s happy; she smiles; she laughs.”

“If it doesn’t work, throw it away,” David said for parents considering using cannabis oil treatments for their children. But for many patients, he said, “it changes your life like it changes my son’s life."

West Virginia: Amendment To Bill Would Legalize Hemp-Derived CBD In The State

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Lawmakers in West Virginia have explained language in a bill that would add substances to the drug schedule that would allow the sale, distribution, and prescription of hemp-derived CBD oils, according to a Herald-Dispatch report. The amendment differentiates between CBD products derived from hemp and CBD derived from marijuana plants containing more than the .3 percent THC allowable under federal law.

The changes were made by the Senate Judiciary Committee after the Director of the West Virginia Hemp Industries Association Morgan Leach said the original version would cause confusion regarding CBD.

Leach said that making the “cash crop” available will help the state become “a catalyst for entrepreneurship and innovation.”

“This revision protects West Virginia hemp farmers’ ability to cultivate and process hemp for CBD. This is one of our biggest revenue streams that will help make our farmers more money as they begin to develop this crop in West Virginia,” Leach said in the report. “Our goals are to (build) industries around food products, dietary supplements, cosmetics and topicals, paper, textiles, bio-plastics, advanced battery technologies and much more.”

The measure has been sent to the Senate with a recommendation to pass it.

U.S.: GW Pharma Moves To Monopolize CBD Market

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Bruce Barcott of Leafly has exposed some actions taken by GW Pharma (NASDAQ: GWPH) that seem to attempt to limit competition from suppliers of CBD.

Lobbyists have been engaged in several states by the company and its U.S. subsidiary, Greenwich BioSciences, companies which are both supporting legislation in South Dakota and Nebraska that would “effectively give GW/Greenwich a temporary monopoly on legal CBD products” in those states for its Epidiolex.

If given FDA approval, Epidiolex could be on the market in early 2018. Legislation advancing in both South Dakota and Nebraska suggests that CBD would be permitted only from FDA-approved providers.

Barcott says GW Pharma and Greenwich BioSciences have hired lobbyists in Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota, Washington and Wisconsin and possibly in California. Barcott attempted to contact GW Pharma for comment but has not yet received a reply. Should GW Pharma succeed in stifling competition, it could have a serious impact on hopeful in-state poducers of CBD, as well as companies both foreign and domestic who extract CBD from industrial hemp.

U.S.: Hemp Industry Association Says DEA Ruling Does Not Make CBD Illegal

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

The Hemp Industry Association has made an announcement that a recent ruling by the U.S. DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) did not make cannabidoids (CBD) illegal.

The following statement was issued by the Hemp Industry Association:

Yesterday the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) issued a Final Rule on the coding of marijuana extracts. Unfortunately some misleading media stories and social media postings lead quite a few people to panic at reports that CBD was being banned under this new rule.

The Sky is NOT Falling. The Final Rule published by DEA did not change the legal status of CBD. This can only be done by a scheduling action which has NOT occurred.

HIA has carefully reviewed this with our legal advisors and discussed it with industry experts. While there are some differing opinions on the effect of the rule, there is general agreement that yesterday's ruling did not change the status of CBD. Here are some important facts to know:

Cannabidiol is not listed on the federal schedule of controlled substances
Sec. 7606 of the Farm Bill defines hemp as distinct from marijuana and does not treat it as a controlled substance when grown under a compliant state program.

Despite these facts, DEA has stated that CBD is a controlled substance previously.

U.S.: New DEA Rule Bans CBD

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Update 12/16/2016: Although widely reported by many news sources that the DEA has banned cannabidiol (CBD), the Hemp Industry Association has made it clear that the DEA has, in fact, not banned CBD.

By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) just banned cannabidiol (CBD), placing it on its list of Schedule 1 drugs. CBD is a chemical found in marijuana that won't make you high, but will stop seizures and help people with debilitating conditions.

Schedule 1 drugs are considered to have no medical benefit and to be highly addictive. The DEA banned the herbal pain reliever Kratom earlier this year, another alternative to dangerous prescription opioids.

DEA Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg said this code “will allow DEA and DEA-registered entities to track quantities of this material separately from quantities of marihuana.”

The rule reads, “For practical purposes, all extracts that contain CBD will also contain at least small amounts of other cannabinoids. However, if it were possible to produce from the cannabis plant an extract that contained only CBD and no other cannabinoids, such an extract would fall within the new drug code.”

Colorado: Newly Available Cannabis Tampons

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Women have a new alternative to treating painful menstrual cramps with Midol, Advil, and the like. There's a new remedy for cramps and it's cannabis tampons.

Designed by the company Foria, the "relief suppositories" made of cannabis "maximize the muscle relaxing and pain relieving properties of cannabis without inducing a psychotropic ‘high.'”

The tampons are made with only three ingredients: cocoa butter, distilled THC Oil and CBD Isolate (99.99%) from organically-grown hemp. Foria explains on its website that CBD Isolate is one of “two key active cannabinoid compounds found in cannabis,” the other being THC.

Foria says their primary focus is on relieving pain, with an intention to “share the powerful medicinal properties of this plant while utilizing modern extraction techniques to standardize purity and potency.” Creating a tampon, they say, instead of a pill, helps “deliver the medicine directly to where it is needed most.”

Unfortunately, the tampons are only available for residents of Colorado with a medical marijuana card. Fiora's site site says that it is working hard “to make Foria available wherever cannabis infused products are available by state law.”

Colorado: Jake Plummer Rips NFL's Marijuana Stance And 'Billionaire A--hole' Jerry Jones

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Jake Plummer, former Denver Broncos quarterback, spoke with BSC Denver recently, criticizing the NFL for its marijuana ban and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones for denying the link between CTE and football. He even called Jones a 'billionaire a--hole."

"I have a hard time with it because everybody says, 'Oh, poor NFL millionaires. Oh, you poor people.' They don't understand," Plummer told BSN Denver. "Maybe they should have a little more to say about the owners that are billionaires, they're not millionaires; they're billionaires."

"Like Jerry Jones, who says it's 'absurd' that there would be a link between brain trauma, football and CTE," Plummer said. "Shame on him for saying that, that billionaire a--hole. It's the worst thing in the world for a guy like that to say. That's where we're sitting; grown-ass men are asked to go out there for millions of dollars -- which, yeah, it's a lot of money -- bang themselves around and completely f--- their lives over for their 40s and 50s. So yeah, poor football players is what I say. If you're a grown-ass man, you should be allowed to make grown-ass decisions."

Plummer is now 10 years into retirement and has seen the negative physical effects football has had on teammates.

But Cowboys owner Jones is denying that football can cause CTE, chronic traumatic encephalopathy.

U.S.: Derrick Morgan Becomes 2nd Active NFL Player To Support Marijuana Research

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Last week Derrick Morgan, starting outside linebacker for the Tennessee Titans, became the second active NFL player to call on the league to support cannabis research in order to see how specific compounds in the plant can help treat or prevent chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE.)

"If there's any evidence that this could help players, they owe it to us to explore it," Morgan told USA Today. "You hear about a lot of former players suffering from depression and dementia.

"Or the suicides," Morgan said. "[The NFL] could and should be a leader in this. If there's any evidence that this could help players, they owe it to us to explore it ... It's a legitimate ask."

Morgan went on to tell Katie Couric in an exclusive interview: "Given how much influence the NFL has on society, I think it would help the greater good. There's a lot of people suffering and a lot of people that can benefit from cannabis as a medical treatment."

Great Britain: Marijuana Extract Proven To Treat Rare Forms Of Epilepsy

A form of marijuana extract has again proven to be an effective treatment for several different types of epilepsy.

By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A pharmaceutical-grade form of marijuana extract has again proven to be an effective treatment for several different types of epilepsy.

The British company GW Pharmaceuticals has released successful results from the latest clinical trial of Epidiolex, a form of CBD-rich medication, Forbes reported.

It was the second trial for a rare type of epilepsy called Lennox Gastaut Dyndrome. Epidiolex was given to 86 patients who suffer from the disorder, while 85 patients received a placebo medication. Patients given the Epidiolex saw their seizures reduce by 44%, compared to a 22% reduction for those in placebo.

“Between the plant itself and the processing steps which are being taken, the product ends up being pure CBD,” said GW’s chief executive Justin Gower to Forbes.

GW Pharmaceuticals plans to file for FDA approval in the first half of 2017, although many similar CBD-based formulations are already available in states with legal medical marijuana laws, such as California and Colorado.

California: Santa Rosa Medical Marijuana Company Raided By Federal DEA Agents

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

The Care By Design (CBD Guild) production facilities in Santa Rosa, California and Sonoma County were searched and temporarily closed on Wednesday morning by local law enforcement and the federal DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration). Law enforcement seized equipment, computers, product, payroll, and financial paperwork.

Care By Design produces an array of medical marijuana products for thousands of patients in California, including patients suffering from cancer, epilepsy, chronic pain, PTSD and other intractable medical conditions.

Care By Design products are CBD-centric. CBD is a therapeutically beneficial compound that does not get people high, and can moderate the intoxicating effects of THC. Care By Design products are available in non-smokable formulations such as gel caps and oral sprays, and available in a variety of CBD:THC ratios so that patients can manage the psychoactive effects of medical marijuana.

Global: Facebook Waging Weird War On Hemp

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Facebook’s weird and inexplicable history of attacking CBD (hemp oil) pages is well documented. It doesn’t make any sense, but we all know it happens: Facebook routinely shuts down pages for any number of often-unspecified reasons, and evidently CBD falls afoul of one of its labyrinthine, incomprehensible and arrogant policies.

So it was perhaps no surprise that one of the most popular UK CBD pages, Canabidol who produce the CBD Gel-Tab, the UK’s best selling CBD supplement, was last week shut down by Facebook admins.

Facebook is a vital tool for pretty much any business today. If you want to sell anything -- especially if you’re selling a niche product -- a social media presence is vital.

Many businesses, like Canabidol, spend thousands on Facebook advertising. It’s an investment into building an audience of potential customers, so when businesses lost their Facebook pages their profitability takes a hit, especially if they have client information, order details and other vital data stored in the page’s inbox.

U.S.: 7th Annual Hemp History Week Features Events June 6-12

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The 7th annual Hemp History Week will be observed June 6-12, 2016, marked by several special events during the campaign. Hemp History Week is the national effort of grassroots organizers, leading hemp product manufacturers, farmers and advocates from all walks of life, working to change federal policy on industrial hemp in the United States.

This year promises to be an historic time in the movement to legalize hemp farming, as more farmers than ever before are planting hemp in states that have lifted prohibition on the crop. The 7th annual campaign will include grassroots events across the country, nationwide retail events and promotions, hemp plantings (in some states where hemp farming is legal under Section 7606 of the U.S. Farm Bill), documentary screenings, farmer outreach, and more.

In addition to its sponsorship of the national program, CV Sciences, via their PlusCBD Oil™ brand, will also be hosting and participating in a number of events focused in California and Kentucky.

New York: Company Wants To Produce Marijuana's Cannabinoids In Tobacco Plants

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Wait, what? In another development on the fast-breaking front regarding the corporate takeover of cannabis, a New York-based company wants to produce cannabinoids in plants other than marijuana, particularly in tobacco.

22nd Century Group, Inc., a plant biotechnology company that calls itself "a leader in tobacco harm reduction and cannabis research," on Thursday announced that it is launching a major new initiative to produce medically important cannabinoids in plants other than cannabis – including tobacco plants.

In support of this initiative, the company also announced that has opened its own fully outfitted molecular biology laboratories in the Cleveland BioLabs building on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus. 22nd Century said its new laboratories will host cutting-edge research in industrial hemp/cannabis and tobacco biotechnology.

Paul J. Rushton, Ph.D., the Company’s recently appointed Cambridge and Max Planck Institute-educated Vice President of Plant Biotechnology, will manage the Company’s research efforts at the new laboratories.

Kentucky: Farmers, Universities Get International Hemp Seed

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Last week, farmers and university research programs in Kentucky received international hemp seed provided by CV Sciences for research projects throughout the state.

This seed distribution, more than a month earlier than last year, allows Kentucky farmers to improve outcomes, make important research gains and keep Kentucky at the forefront in developing a domestic industrial hemp supply.

By receiving the seeds promptly, and thanks to the expeditious work of the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, four farms and two university programs will be able to plant at the optimal moment, according to CV Sciences.

Over the past three years, CV Sciences has supported industrial hemp research and development through Kentucky’s Hemp Pilot Project. In addition to providing seeds to several Kentucky universities agronomic research departments in past years, the company has assisted research efforts with monetary donations as well.

CV Sciences also funds the work of the University of Kentucky’s first graduate student focused entirely on hemp and cannabinoid research, who is studying various methods to increase cannabinoid production. The company plans to continue to expand research efforts with universities and Kentucky farmers through the remaining years of the pilot project.

Alabama: Governor Signs Leni's Law, Increasing Access To Medical Cannabis Oil

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Patients in Alabama will have greater access to medical cannabis oil after Governor Robert Bentley on Wednesday signed HB 61, also know as Leni's Law, as passed by the Alabama Legislature.

Gov. Bentley's signature decriminalizes possession of medical marijuana CBD oil with THC content of up to 3 percent. The bill is named for a four-year-old girl whose family moved to Oregon to legally access cannabidiol cannabis oil to treat her severe epilepsy, and was hailed as a victory by Leni's mother, Amy Young, reports Paul Gattis at Al.com.

"We are incredibly grateful to the state of Alabama for giving families like ours the opportunity to find relief from life altering and debilitating conditions, and hope for a better quality of life," Young told Hemp News Wednesday afternoon. "Access to medical treatment shouldn't be determined by your zip code."

"I've got this smile glued to my face," said Young, who revealed she'd already received calls from lawmakers in Iowa, South Dakota and Tennessee since the Leni's Law was signed.

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