Vireo sues the state of Minnesota over uneven edible law.
Vireo sues the state of Minnesota over uneven edible law.
The fast-acting edible company 1906 has secured a seven-figure investment from Connecticut Innovations (CI), Connecticut’s strategic venture capital arm and the leading source of financing and ongoing support for Connecticut’s innovative, growing companies. According to the company statement, it is a first-of-its-kind investment by a state venture fund in a cannabis business.
“Along with our confidence in 1906’s future prospects, CI’s investment also recognizes the increasingly important role the cannabis industry will continue to play in the economic, health, and social development of the state,” said Lauren Carmody, vice president of marketing at Connecticut Innovations. “With its track record of innovation and success, 1906 is a great addition to CI’s expanding portfolio. This investment will help accelerate the company’s ambitious plans for growth and establish 1906 as the first of many cannabis industry leaders based here in Connecticut.”
1906 edibles are different from other due to its fast onset time. These edibles typically have a psychoactive onset of 20 minutes or less. The company has six different thoughtful formulations of super-powerful plant medicines like Bliss for happiness and Go for energy. The company prides itself on its moderately dosed cannabis.
CI’s decision to invest in 1906 was prompted by the company’s leadership position as the number one cannabis pill in the U.S., successful revenue generation as well as its commitment to and leadership in the areas of employment, health and wellness, and social justice. The investment aligns with CI’s mission to promote innovation and diversity in Connecticut and supports efforts to prioritize public health, public safety, social justice, and equity. 1906 has a commitment to patient and consumer advocacy, as well as its strong stance on pressing social justice issues, has made 1906 a leading voice in the industry.
“CI’s investment in 1906 is a major milestone for the cannabis industry — institutional investors don’t need to wait on the sidelines for changes to federal laws before they participate in the cannabis market (or funding the growth of this industry),” said Peter Barsoom, CEO of 1906. “The investment from CI will help us grow our business in the state and squarely positions 1906 at the center of the cannabis movement in the Northeast at exactly the right time. We are excited to bring 1906 and our products to Connecticut.”
Connecticut Innovations joins other investors, including Arcview and Merida, in this current round of funding.
Legal cannabis loopholes are sparking both innovation and creative evasion in today’s cannabis industry, and a host of law professionals are taking pains to elucidate them for clients in cannabis who risk both profit and loss by operating within them. After doing our due diligence with some of the cannabis industry’s top law professionals, Green Market Report has composed a list of the top five legal loopholes keeping things interesting in cannabis right now.
According to Morgan Davis, founder and CEO of Davis Legal, CBD products for food and beverage consumption present one of the most commonly exploited legal loopholes. CBD is still not FDA-approved, but consumables are commonly available everywhere from gas stations to Whole Foods and online retailers. “There are some states that have enacted regulations allowing for hemp and CBD products for human consumption,” Davis says, “but a majority have not. Nevertheless, a consumer can buy hemp and CBD food and beverage products for consumption in almost every state in the U.S.”
David Feldman, CEO of cannabis strategic advisory firm Skip Intro Advisors, puts Delta-8 at the top of his loophole list, and he’s not alone. Legal Associate Demetria Hamilton, in a blog post for law firm Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLPDigest.com) states that while Delta-8 THC is derived from CBD extracted from hemp plants and has been found to provide a “high” distinct from Delta-9, it still falls under the Farm Bill’s definition of “hemp”. “In other words,” she writes, “while Delta-8 is another name for Tetrahydrocannabinols, its presence in any quantity provides a risky grey area for brave cannabis producers to work-and profit- within.”
Both Feldman and Davis are of the opinion that the medical marijuana market is another realm where cannabis businesses find workarounds to get their products into consumers’ hands. Davis cites “period care”, such as CBD or THC tampons, which are not FDA-approved and, as “medical devices”, are prohibited from including THC or CBD yet are still available online and throughout the country. Sex and wellness is another avenue for loopholes. As “medical devices”, sex toys are regulated by the FDA, thereby prohibiting cannabis as an additive. Cannabis is also not approved by the FDA to enhance the sexual experience or treat sexual dysfunction, yet products (e.g. THC strains specifically targeted to enhance sexual experience, infused lubes, cannabis condoms, etc.) that address exactly those needs are gaining in popularity. “The loophole,” says Davis, “is that most of the companies either sell their product as a topical or “novelty item” to avoid the medical device issue. Add in some creative marketing to avoid being prescriptive and, so far, these products have avoided much scrutiny or enforcement.”
Both Davis and Feldman agree that “gift culture” has long been used as a means of circumventing legal restrictions by including cannabis gifts with a different purchase, such as a sticker, patch or poster advertising the company. A “donation economy” offers a similar workaround, and one that has been utilized in California’s medical market for twenty years. Customers make a donation in an amount equivalent to the cost of a cannabis product, then receive the product as a “free gift” as a token of appreciation for the donation.
“Cannabis hospitality” is a sector of the market where legal loopholes are helping cannabis consumers enjoy products outside of their homes. Restaurants or lounges may offer consumption options like joints or edibles without possessing the requisite retail license, while hotels, event spaces and even campgrounds can take advantage of private property laws to allow them to host cannabis consumption on their property. This does not extend to national parks and property owned by the Bureau of Land Management, which adhere to federal regulations and where cannabis and certain CBD products are illegal at all times. State parks may be more flexible depending on the state’s marijuana regulations. For example, information officer for California State Parks Adeline Yee confirms that “persons 21 and older may possess up to 28.5 grams of marijuana” at California state parks. Smoking or ingesting cannabis in California state parks is still illegal, however, and may only occur on private property.
Morgan Davis observes that some of today’s hottest trends in cannabis are operating in many of these legal grey areas, driven by those who choose to believe that if something is not very specifically prohibited by law, it is legal. “It’s still an exciting interval to watch,” Davis says. “The first one through the wall might get the bloodiest, but they’ll clear the path for all of the monumental ways this plant can transform lives.”
Editors note: This is a guest post.
If you’ve grown wearisome of old-age methods of consuming CBD, you will absolutely love CBD gummies. They are like squishy candies that are sweet and flavorsome but are jam packed with cannabinoids. Compared to vapes and tinctures, it is a unique but more fun way to introduce this phytonutrient in your system.
You can also find gummies infused with other powerful nutrients such as apple cider vinegar, spirulina, turmeric, and so many more. Since they are a unique type of CBD and are available in many blends, it is overwhelmingly challenging to find the right match for you.
So, follow our guide to find out what you should look for in CBD gummies.
Not all CBD gummies are formulated the same, some are highly potent, whereas others come with better flavoring. Here are the three most common types currently available in the market:
On average gummy usually contains 5 to 10 mg of CBD — a pretty decent dosage. CBDfx, on the other hand, harbors 50 mg/ serving, which is equivalent to a full-day requirement of CBD. If you are looking for a highly potent gummy, this is your product.
For candy-lovers who seek a burst of sweet flavors, gourmet gummies are worth giving a shot. However, they come in a huge flavor spectrum, which includes peach rings, sour gummies, fruity flavors, and so much more. They are formulated to obscure CBD’s flavor, giving you a more fun experience.
It is a great concept to blend flavorings, CBD, minerals, and vitamins to create a full package of nutrients. Such edibles are becoming increasingly popular for providing such a delightful way to fill nutrient gaps. So, you couldn’t be happier with this type of CBD, however, they are slightly more expensive than other types.
CBD is extracted differently, giving us three distinct types based on purity level — isolates, broad-spectrum, and full-spectrum. If you are looking for the purest forms of CBD, then isolates are what we recommend. They are devoid of terpenes and volatile organic impurities, making the product perfect for medicinal purposes.
Broad-spectrum CBD lacks THC and contains a high concentration of cannabinoids. On the opposite, full-spectrum CD offers different cannabinoids as well as THC, which is why it is known for triggering psychoactive effects.
Since we are talking about edibles, there is more than just CBD involved in the formula. Some companies use preservatives to make them suitable for long-term use. Also, there are many artificial ingredients and sweeteners to enhance flavorsome hints in the servings.
Those who suffer from allergies, or are following a strict vegan diet, should stay away from ingredients like fructose corn syrup. Therefore, read the ingredient list thoroughly to watch out for unwanted compounds before getting a bottle of CBD gummies.
Not always artificial elements are involved in the formulation as 100% organic CBD gummies are also available. Everything from the natural flavoring to the color is extracted from organic sources in such ideal products.
As mentioned earlier, the potency of CBD gummies does not remain the same for all types. For instance, a 10 mg CBD isolate would not be as potent as a 10 mg full-spectrum CBD. Also, the amount a person should intake in a single day varies, depending on the type of health condition you are aiming to treat. For serious problems like chronic pain and stress, you may have to consume more than usual to enjoy optimal effects.
However, if you are not sure of the dosage, then it is best to experiment with a little amount first. Starting from point zero will give you a rough idea of how much CBD your body desires.
At the moment, CBD gummies are not FDA approved, meaning they don’t guarantee the quality, effectiveness, and safety of these products. Still, if you have to reap maximum benefits without having to suffer from detrimental side effects, it is best to research the product’s quality.
You can check whether the ingredients have been inspected for impurities such as molds, pesticides, heavy metals, and other unwanted compounds. Also, you can compare the lab results from COA with the claimed amount of THC and CBD to verify the concentration.
Since they are candies, they are meant to be delicious — that’s why they are formulated in the first place. They come in a myriad of flavor options, including fruity, sour, chocolate, flowery hints, etc., depending on the ingredients.
The most popular range of flavors is the fruity spectrum — apple, strawberry, pineapple, pomegranate, and so on. However, manufacturers have discovered a unique blend of flavors as well to attract the crowd, giving them something different to try. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that you will be introducing a mouthful of happiness in your body, which is an experience worth having.
With every passing day and every new bit of legislation passed, more products containing CBD hit the shelves. Word is out that cannabinoids have real and lasting benefits, particularly when it comes to troubleshooting some of the most persistent maladies plaguing consumers today, including anxiety, insomnia, and pain. Word is also out that not all CBD products are created equal, and that the potency promised on packaging may not be an accurate reflection of the product within. According to the CBD Edibles Market Report (resulting from a collaboration between Leafreport and their partner lab Canalysis, this issue is particularly pronounced when it comes to edibles.
The report found that edibles, one of the fastest-growing categories in the CBD market, are harder to measure compared to tinctures, capsules, and other products. The reason given for this is that “CBD edibles are more difficult to formulate than CBD oil and contain much smaller amounts of CBD per piece, which means that variations of even a few milligrams can have a big effect.” “Big” is no exaggeration. The analysis, which incorporated 40 products and 21 brands, found that 63% of products tested contained more CBD than stated on the label, with only 11 out of the 40 tested edible products containing CBD levels within 10% of the claimed amount. That’s only 27.5% of products that meet industry experts’ recommendation that cannabis products deviate no more than 10% from the label.
Indeed, only 25% of the products tested had CBD levels close to the amount advertised, with a whopping 75% of products off by anywhere from 11% to 177%. Third-party testing, which involves sending products to an independent lab to verify potency and safety, used to be considered a safeguard against such wild variability, but that does not appear to be the case in every instance. One would expect that the brands with the highest accuracy rating would be from larger or more established companies, yet this, too, was not the case. Using an A through F rating system, with “A” representing products with CBD levels within 10% of what is stated on the label and “F” those products where CBD levels differed from the label by more than 30%, most A-rated brands were from relatively small or new companies (like Vermont’s VT CBD) while some of the more established (like American Shaman) received “F” ratings, and they weren’t alone. 30% of products tested received Leafreport’s worst rating.
Although third-party testing did not prevent companies that used it from putting out products whose potency did not match the label, it was a consistent factor among those that scored well. Independent test results still matter, and the responsible consumer would do well to pay them heed. For those who don’t want to take the kind of gamble on the potency that edibles represent, Leafreport’s study concludes that CBD oil is the safer option to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth.
So many things have been turned upside down with this pandemic, and saying we live in interesting times would be an understatement. Industries and businesses are being demolished and altered in ways unheard of just a month ago, and a rare few are actually booming.
For the cannabis industry, one of the biggest changes leading to a boom is that as a whole cannabis is now being considered an “essential” part of life nationwide. The level of legitimacy this brings to the industry would have normally taken another decade.
Delivery services and curb side pick-up have been implemented across the country also erasing years of necessary effort overnight. But overall, the complete change in cannabis consumer behavior has been one of the most interesting developments to witness for many of us.
As reported by Vice, politics and current events are major sources of anxiety for many in the United States and this leads to an increase of unhealthy behaviors like drinking alcohol, smoking, or eating poorly to cope with what is termed as “headlines distress disorder”.
In times of great stress, the sale of alcoholic beverages has proven to surge without fail. With legal cannabis now implemented around the country, the same is now proving to be true. According to Headset, during this current Coronavirus crisis, US adult use cannabis markets show average daily sales at large increase by 10%.
Sue Bachorski, formerly with Constellation Brands for 30 years and currently with the House of Saka, explained that “historically, alcohol sales frequently rise during times of economic downturn, regional disasters, etc. There is no reason to believe that cannabis sales would be any different and there will likely be a prolonged upswing for the foreseeable future.”
The Numbers Say It All
As of April 2, 2020, Headset released data that shows how the landscape of preferred cannabis products and consumption methods has proven to alter completely. In the analysis, Headset compares the average daily sales of each product category before the COVID-19 sales bump began (January 1st through March 6th) to the COVID-19 crisis time period (March 7th through March 31st).
Cannabis infused beverage sales have increased by 14% while edibles accounted for a 28% increase. With infused beverages previously only accounting for 1% of the market, this is a big jump for the category. The reasoning for this change in consumer sales makes sense considering the virus attacks your respiratory system, so people would rather eat or drink their cannabis instead of smoking or vaping it. Pre-rolls and topicals have actually fallen by 13%.
I reached out to some key players in these categories to find out why they feel these increases have occurred. Warren Bobrow, co-founder of cannabis infused beverage brand Klaus Apothicaire and a Vices writer for Forbes, told Green Market Report that he felt that “while being quarantined in our homes, it makes perfect sense to further expand our inner space with high quality cannabis beverages and edibles. Smokable products could prove tricky with this particular virus.”
Ben Larson, CEO of Vertosa, said that “in these uncertain and challenging times, it’s an encouraging silver lining to see cannabis consumers increasingly seeking out infused beverages. There are likely several factors affecting the recent rise in sales, but an important takeaway is that infused beverages are typically designed for individual consumption and can be consumed discreetly, which is ideal during social distancing. They are also an approachable, familiar way to consume cannabis for less experienced users and those looking to avoid smoking during this time.”
The Women Stepped Up Their Spending
Beyond the types of products surging, the Headset data showed that even gender sales show a change in behavior during this crisis. While both genders saw significant increases in cannabis spending, females had more than double the sales growth of males. As Headset previously reported, males make up roughly two thirds of cannabis spending on any given day. Therefore, it could be speculated that females were less likely to have cannabis products on hand and more likely to feel a sense of urgency to stock up.
Tracey Mason, CEO of House of Saka, explains that she believes females could be a major driver in these increased category surges because “there is a triangulation of needs that beverages and edibles meet specifically for the female consumer: They offer precise dosing which provides a safe and controlled means by which to experiment, they offer a subtle means of consumption which removes the stigma associated with smoking and vaping and they are multi-use which drives sociability and expands usage occasions. Safe, Subtle and Social, those are the benefits of infused beverages in a nutshell.”
It remains to be seen as to whether these changes will become market altering over the long term, or if it was truly just a panic surge with no real impact. But as far as the change in gender sales, if this pattern continues, brands will need to evolve their marketing campaigns to appeal more to women.
Understandably, edible and beverage brands are predicting continued growth. “We’ve seen exponential growth in our edibles sales at Garden Society and expect that as these shelter in place orders remain in place, we will continue to see growth. We believe this will have an impact on the overall market and consumer trends over the next year,” said Karli Warner, co-founder of The Garden Society
Geoff Doran, founder and CEO of Van Doran Brands, stated that “right now we are watching this trend very closely as edible and infused beverage companies. We aren’t too surprised that there is a current spike with these categories. We think the current spike has a lot to do with the “newbies” that are bored at home and giving cannabis a shot because of easy access they have through delivery, and quite frankly because they have nothing else to do with their days. A lot of the new cannabis buyers tend to gravitate toward a method of consumption that is familiar to them, which is obviously through eating and drinking. We’re excited about this spike because we know people will realize that edibles and cannabis beverages are a great cannabis experience!”
A new report from High Yield Insights has determined that women are the biggest fans of cannabis edible products. The Chicago-based research firm studied the cannabis consumers in the legal status and found that when it came to edibles, consumers “more likely to be lighter users (using one time or less per month), newer to using (less than 5 years), female, college educated and high-income
The report also learned that while many users often try their first edible in a recreational setting, many medical patients al prefer this category of consumption. The study noted that 41% of the people that responded increased their edible consumption after cannabis became legal.
“To anticipate the cannabis market’s direction, companies need to understand the customer’s mindset and purchase journey. We’re finding many customers are receptive yet ill-informed or hesitant due to unsatisfactory first experiences,” said Mike Luce, co-founder of High Yield Insights. “Customer journeys may be well-worn paths in traditional consumer packaged goods but are relatively new in cannabis. By understanding how consumers make decisions, manufacturers are better able to identify ways to improve the purchase experience and, ideally, enhance their product lines.”
It’s no surprise then that the number one best selling edible product in Colorado is a gummy from a woman-owned company called Wana Brands. According to a March 2018 report from BDS Analytics, Wana recently beat other Colorado cannabis companies to become the state’s No. 1 overall cannabis brand, selling more units and dollars than any other company.
“At Wana Brands, our focus has always been on making top-quality cannabis-infused edibles that meet our customers’ needs. They can trust Wana to deliver the most flavorful and consistently effective products, and this has helped propel us as the leading Colorado cannabis brand,” said Nancy Whiteman, Founder & CEO of Wana Brands. “Every day, consumers are learning more about the benefits of CBD and are seeking out this cannabinoid, and we’ve answered the call with a new take on our popular sour gummies featuring the citrusy Yuzu.”
Still, edibles have recently come under fire as some states have begun to ban such products. The California Department of Public Health’s Food and Drug Branch changed its FAQs last week and banned the use of CBD products derived from hemp. The department claims that since the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved hemp derived CBD as a safe ingredient in food, then it should not be allowed.
Just a couple of weeks ago, the Arizona Court of Appeals ruled that medical cannabis extracts called hashish did not fall under the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act and could no longer be sold in dispensaries. The ruling though could be applied to edible products made with cannabis oil which is also an extract. The ruling is causing a great deal of confusion and it is expected to be asked to be repealed. Many edible makers in Arizona have vowed to continue producing their products.
In the meantime, brands are finding that if women are their biggest customers, then it will make sense to market their products towards them. Hopefully, that doesn’t mean pink packaging and curly script fonts.
Palo Alto-based cannabis-infused edibles brand Plus Products closed an approximately $6M in Series B financing to expand its operations. The financing was led by Serruya Private Equity Partners (SPE) and Navy Capital Green Fund LP. The money from the capital raise will be used to fund rapid production capacity expansion, factory automation, working capital, and new product development.
“We are extremely proud of the products PLUS has brought to market,” said Jake Heimark, CEO, and co-founder. “We’ve quickly grown into one of the leading edible brands in California. With the proceeds of this round, we will continue to further our mission: to make cannabis safe and approachable for all types of consumers.”
Edibles have proven to be big winners among the recreational consumer in California. According to BDS Analytics, edible products have accounted for 18% of marijuana retail sales in February 2018 across licensed retailers in California. One of the biggest drawbacks with edibles is that consumers typically wait at least for a half hour for a response after ingestion. PLUS products are known for its rapid reaction. BDS Analytics also noted that PLUS ranked in the top ten sales for edible brands in California.
All of the PLUS products are produced in the company’s dedicated food-safe cannabis manufacturing facility in Adelanto, California. According to a company statement, the 12,000 square foot facility was outfitted for scalable food production with funds raised in 2017’s Series A round, led by The Green Organic Fund and Verde Mountain Fund.
“2018 is a historic year for California’s cannabis industry with the official launch of legalized adult use,” said John T. Kaden, Manager and Chief Investment Officer of the Navy Capital Green Fund. “PLUS is establishing a leading position in California and has assembled the right management team to execute and succeed in this complex regulated environment.”
In addition to its established lines, Plus Products has already begun launching limited edition products that capitalize on holidays like its Valentine’s day themed Rose & Vanilla gummies, which were available at select locations and through delivery services.
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Daily Hit: March 20, 2023 https://t.co/INBrxtYKhn
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