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Marijuana Industry Whines: Why Do Almost 85% of California’s Cities and Counties Ban Legal Pot?
 
Weed Maps is a marijuana business operating in Irvine, California and Denver, Colorado. It enables users to “find medical and recreational marijuana dispensaries, brands, deliveries, deals and doctors near you.” [Note: Its parent company, Ghost Management Group LLC, contributed $1 million to California’s Proposition 64 Campaign, which legalized the drug for recreational use in 2016.]
 
Weedmaps also lists page after page of marijuana strains and how much THC and CBD each contains (Bubble Gum 8.42 percent THC, 3 tenths of 1 percent CBD; Pot of Gold 27.54 percent THC, 29 tenths of one percent CBD, etc.)
 
Now Weedmaps is complaining because nearly 85 percent of the state’s cities and counties have declined to issue licenses to marijuana businesses within their borders. California law requires local communities to issue a license before the state can issue one, and both must be issued before a grower, processor, or pot shop can conduct business in the state.
 
The company is conducting an aggressive campaign to shame local officials who are acting in behalf of their constituents rather than the pot industry. “As an elected official, it is your responsibility to develop regulations that give unlicensed operators the opportunity to legitimize their businesses. I am calling on you to uphold the wishes of California voters, and create a fair and reasonable licensing process,” concludes a sign-on letter that Weedmaps is asking patrons to send.
 
Read Weedmaps appeal here.

First Tests Are In: 1 in 5 Marijuana
Samples in California Isn’t Making Grade
 
One in five marijuana batches has failed laboratory testing since state safety regulations began last month. The batches were either incorrectly labelled or contaminated with pesticides or “microbial impurities, such as mold and bacteria. The most common microbes showing up are the fungus aspergillus and the bacteria e. coli and salmonella.” Other samples contained residual solvents used to extract various cannabinoids from the plant material.
 
While required as of January 1, 2018, the state gave the industry a six-month grace period to come into compliance with the new regulations. Additional regs will be required as of January 1, 2019. So far, 31 testing facilities have been licensed.
 
Read the Orange County Register story here.

 
Study: More Teens Saying No to Substances
 
An important new study finds the rate of adolescents who choose not to use alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs is five times higher than it was four decades ago. 
 
Researchers analyzed data from the Monitoring the Future Survey which has been funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and conducted annually by the University of Michigan since 1975.
 
In 2014, 26 percent of high school seniors said they had never used alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs, compared to 5 percent in 1976 and abstinence from current use then rose from 23 percent to 52 percent.
 
Only 8 percent of teens abstained from alcohol use in 1976 compared to 34 percent in 2014. And many fewer seniors smoke cigarettes now than in 1976: 66 percent in 2014 compared to 25 percent in 1976.
 
But abstinence from marijuana is only slightly higher today than in 1976, and researchers are concerned that use will increase as more states legalize the drug.
 
Read American Association of Pediatrics press release here. Read study abstract, published in Pediatrics, here.

 
Drug Use among Youth: National Survey Data
Support a Common Liability of All Drug Use
 
Some authors of the study above, along with additional researchers, conducted an earlier study that analyzed data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. That study finds a remarkable difference in the use of other drugs by adolescents (ages 12-17) who use marijuana, alcohol, or tobacco compared to nonusers as the graphs above, created by two of the study authors, illustrate.
 
Only 8 percent of adolescents who do not use marijuana, for example, use alcohol, but 44.6 percent of adolescents who do use marijuana use alcohol as well. This relationship of nonusers to users and their use of other drugs holds across the board. In other words, alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana are all gateway drugs.
 
“After controlling for age, sex, and race/ethnicity,” the researchers say, “compared with youth without past-month marijuana use, youth with past-month marijuana use were 8.9 times more likely to report past-month cigarette use, 5.6, 7.9 and 15.8 times more likely to report past-month alcohol use, binge use, or heavy use (respectively), and 9.9 times more likely to report past-month use of other illicit drugs.”
 
The researchers conclude the best prevention message for youth is to discourage any use of all three drugs during adolescence.
 
Read study abstract published in Preventive Medicine here.

 
Beer Infused with Marijuana
Will Be Available in Vegas by Mid-August
 
An entrepreneur in Las Vegas has made a craft beer that is nonalcoholic but infused with marijuana. He is producing it in the city near the airport and will be ready to launch his product later this summer.
 
The product, Two Roots, has “zero hangover,” says its inventor, who calls it a good alternative to marijuana edibles. He says he picked Las Vegas for Two Roots’ launch because the city hosts 43 million tourists annually.
 
“We wanted to start in this market where people would adopt the product a lot more easily,” he said. “[We] fit in culturally with a product like this.”
 
Read and view NBC 3 News Las Vegas story here.
The Marijuana Report is a weekly e-newsletter published by National Families in Action in partnership with SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana).

Visit National Families in Action's website, The Marijuana Report.Org, to learn more about the marijuana story unfolding across the nation.

Subscribe to The Marijuana Report.

Our mission is to protect children from addictive drugs
by shining light on the science that underlies their effects.

 
Addictive drugs harm children, families, and communities.
Legalizing them creates commercial industries that make drugs more available,
increase use, and expand harms.

Science shows that addiction begins in childhood.
It is a pediatric disease that is preventable.
 
We work to prevent the emergence of commercial
addictive drug industries that will target children.

We support FDA approved medicines.

We support the assessment, treatment, and/or social and educational services
for users and low-level dealers as alternatives to incarceration.

 
About SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana)
 
SAM is a nonpartisan alliance of lawmakers, scientists and other concerned citizens who want to move beyond simplistic discussions of "incarceration versus legalization" when discussing marijuana use and instead focus on practical changes in marijuana policy that neither demonizes users nor legalizes the drug. SAM supports a treatment, health-first marijuana policy.  SAM has four main goals:
  • To inform public policy with the science of today's marijuana.
  • To reduce the unintended consequences of current marijuana policies, such as lifelong stigma due to arrest.
  • To prevent the establishment of "Big Marijuana" - and a 21st-Century tobacco industry that would market marijuana to children.
  • To promote research of marijuana's medical properties and produce, non-smoked, non-psychoactive pharmacy-attainable medications.

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