Study Suggests CBD Significantly Improves Well-Being

Among the results of a new study by healthtech B-corp Radicle Science, participants experienced measured improvement in their well-being on average.

Thirteen brands were included in the study of nearly 3,000 participants to determine whether botanical products containing CBD deliver therapeutic benefits across five health outcomes, including well-being, quality of life, longer-term pain, feelings of anxiety and sleep quality.

Key findings include a 71% improvement in participants’ well-being; 63% experienced a clinically meaningful improvement in anxiety; 61% experienced improvement in sleep quality; 47% experienced improvement in pain; and 61% reported an effect within one to four hours of taking their product. Across all health outcomes, the largest improvements were observed within the first week.

New York Moves Towards Hemp Packaging for Cannabis Products

A New York measure introduced in November would prioritize the use of hemp-based packaging for cannabis products.

State Sen. Michelle Hinchey, chairperson of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said the bill would help “kickstart” a lagging industrial hemp industry and promote sustainable packaging options while providing business opportunities and economic development. The bill would make New York the first state to order hemp packaging for cannabis products by directing the state Cannabis Control Board to develop a plan to make hemp the primary packaging source for all cannabis products made in the state.

Cashless ATMs a No-Go for Visa

With banks and card service providers shying away from cannabis related transactions, it has become the norm to walk into a smoke shop or dispensery and find an ATM where customers can get money to pay for their purchases. A little less common is a “cashless ATM” which is a POS device driven by payment applications that mimic standalone ATMs — however, no cash disbursements are made to cardholders.

“Instead, the devices are used for purchase transactions, which are miscoded as ATM cash disbursements. Purchase amounts are often rounded up to create the appearance of a cash disbursement,” Visa, the world’s second-largest card payment company, noted in a recent compliance memo. 

According to Visa, misuse of cashless ATMs “will be subject to non-compliance assessments and/or penalties” or “subject to further compliance enforcement.”

A Chicago Bar Association blog post noted that miscoding cannabis sales would be a violation of federal law as well, possibly resulting in fines of $200,000 or $2,500 per day which can be retroactively applied to and from the first day of noncompliance.

What Grade Does CBD Deserve?

Leafreport, the CBD industry’s peer-reviewed watchdog website, sent 221 CBD products from 111 brands for third-party testing —among the findings, the company found that 28% of products received the worst (F) grade for having CBD levels that differed from the label by more than 30%. 

On average, the CBD content of the products was off from the label by nearly 25%. Beverages had the worst results, with only 18% of products matching the label and two products containing no CBD at all. Out of 97 products advertised to contain broad or full-spectrum CBD, 44% were mislabeled. In the beverage, topical, and edible categories, more products got an F than an A.

Indiana Mother Pushes for Marijuana Reform, Drug Awareness

Cindy Ziemke, an Indiana lawmaker, who has worked to raise awareness about substance misuse, plans to introduce a bill to legalize marijuana for both recreational and medical use in the new legislative session.

The measure would legalize cannabis for adults 21 and older and set up a regulated system of sales, mirroring neighboring Michigan’s marijuana law. It would also establish a medical cannabis program in the state.

One of Ziemke’s sons, who is eight years in recovery from a heroin addiction, encouraged her to pursue the reform legislation. She believes legalization will help divert people from the illicit market where they might be exposed to other drugs.

Colorado Bill Targets Flavored Vapes

According to The Denver Post, Representative Kyle Mullica will introduce a 2022 bill to impose a state-wide ban on the sale of flavored cigarettes and vaping products. 

Several cities in Colorado have passed similar bans, but an attempt to do so in Denver failed after Mayor Michael Hancock vetoed the City Council vote and members failed to overturn his veto. He and other councilors cited a need to have statewide regulations.

Lawmakers will have to convince Gov Jared Polis that a flavor ban is a good idea. In a statement, spokesperson Victoria Graham said, “The governor has signed legislation providing local governments authority to regulate tobacco products and as a general philosophy prefers local control because our local governments are closest to the people they represent.”

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