New Mexico’s Health Chief Says Opioid Addicts Still Can’t Use Medical Marijuana

Last week, New Mexico’s top health official rejected the use of medical marijuana as a treatment for opioid addiction for the second year in a row, angering supporters who have been looking to find new ways to mitigate the opioid crisis currently plaguing the state. The state Medical Cannabis Advisory Board recommended that the Department of Health adopt opioid use disorder, as well as several other new qualifying conditions, for medical cannabis this year, but Health Secretary Lynn Gallagher shot down almost all of these proposed conditions.

Gallagher rejected the board’s recommendations to allow medical marijuana as a treatment for opioid abuse, muscular dystrophy, Tourette’s syndrome, eczema, and psoriasis, but did approve its use for obstructive sleep apnea. “I cannot say with any degree of confidence that the use of cannabis for treatment of opioid dependence and its symptoms would be either safe or effective,” she wrote, the Santa Fe New Mexican reports. Despite the cannabis board’s recommendation, Gallagher asserted that there was not enough medical evidence to support the inclusion of opioid abuse as a qualifying condition.

But there is a large and growing body of research that does confirm that medical marijuana can effectively reduce patients’ dependence on opioids, however. One study has even found that New Mexico’s own medical marijuana program has already been effectively reducing opioid use. The study, published in the journal PLOS One last year, tracked chronic pain patients enrolled in the state’s medical marijuana program for nearly two years, and found that 80% of them were able to reduce their opioid intake with the assistance of cannabis.

Numerous other researchers have drawn similar conclusions. A study from Illinois found that 67% of patients were able to cease all opioid use after enrolling in the state’s medical marijuana program. This April, two more new studies found that Medicaid and Medicare patients were filling fewer opioid prescriptions in states with legal medical cannabis. In July, another found that doctors in states with legal medical cannabis prescribed 30% fewer opioids than their counterparts in prohibition states, while also concluding that replacing pharmaceutical painkillers with legal weed could save Medicaid millions of dollars annually.

This is the second time that New Mexico health department officials have declined the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board’s recommendation to add opioid abuse to the list of conditions. State lawmakers attempted to sidestep the health department by passing a bill that would have added opioid use disorder as a qualifying condition last year, but it was vetoed by Gov. Susana Martinez, who argued that the state’s medical marijuana program was not equipped to supply the large number of patients that the bill would make eligible.

“I’m extremely disappointed that the Administration has once again failed to listen to the experts to allow the use of medical cannabis to treat opioid use disorder,” state Sen. Jeff Steinborn, who sponsored the 2017 bill, said in a statement, the Drug Policy Alliance reports. “In the heart of the opioid abuse epidemic it’s critical we use every tool available to save lives.”

“We lose one or two New Mexicans to overdose every single day. The Secretary’s failure to add this condition is discriminatory and stigmatizing for people suffering from opioid and other substance use disorders,” Jessica Gelay, Policy Manager with the Drug Policy Alliance, said in a statement. “It’s well known that New Mexico needs more options to support people suffering from problematic opioid use. This decision means that medical cannabis, a legitimate option to support symptoms related to OUD and withdrawal from opioids continues to be out of reach. I am hopeful that under a new administration science and compassion will prevail.”

New Mexico’s Health Chief Says Opioid Addicts Still Can’t Use Medical Marijuana MERRY JANE
Availability of Medical Insurance Coverage for Medical Cannabis Patients The National Law Review

Marijuana Bill Scheduled For Congressional Vote This Week Forbes
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Boulder couple to open locally sourced CBD boutique

Boulder couple Jessica and Ed Bates are opening a new CBD boutique that will be stocked with products made from hemp grown right down the road from future store location.

Moon Mother Hemp Company: A CBD Boutique, which will be located in 550-square-foot store front in Boulder’s Water Street Plaza on Canyon Boulevard, will follow a “seed to sale” model, Jessica Bates said. This allows the Bates to maintain control over the quality of the product from before the hemp is grown until a customer walks out of the shop with a CBD tincture or topical balm.

“When you’re controlling the product through the whole process, you can ensure quality,” she said. “The goal is to have the cleanest products possible as far as processing goes.”

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


Boulder couple Jessica and Ed Bates are opening a new CBD boutique that will be stocked with products made from hemp grown right down the road from future store location.
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It’s time for Colorado to update it marijuana laws

Colorado has done an admirable job of implementing the legalization of medical and retail marijuana, creating a stable regulatory environment in which the industry can grow, while protecting the public health and safety.

However, the state’s regulatory regime has become too complicated since its initial implementation, and it is time to consider some substantive reforms to Colorado’s law.

In particular, the law on marijuana business ownership and investment needs attention. The state can and should keep bad actors out of the industry, but the implementation of this objective has created an unwieldy structure that is, at best, difficult to understand and enforce. Colorado needs to simplify the categories of owners and investors, along with the limitations on who can qualify for those roles.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


Colorado has done an admirable job of implementing the legalization of medical and retail marijuana, creating a stable regulatory environment in which the industry can grow, while protecting the public health and safety.
The post It’s time for Colorado to update it marijuana laws appeared first on The Cannabist. […]

Fallen pot package in Nebraska leads to possible prison time for Colorado man

KEARNEY, Neb. — Two people arrested in south-central Nebraska are facing possible prison time for hauling marijuana, including some that had fallen onto Interstate 80.

The Kearney Hub reports that 49-year-old Charlie Red of Sedalia and 29-year-old Damaisy De La Caridad Rodriguez of Miami pleaded no contest Friday in Buffalo County District Court to felony distribution of marijuana. They face up to 20 years in prison.

Authorities say a motorist saw and then picked up a package that fell from a flatbed trailer being pulled by a pickup on Interstate 80 on Jan. 19. It contained marijuana.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


Two people arrested in south-central Nebraska are facing possible prison time for hauling marijuana, including some that had fallen onto Interstate 80.
The post Fallen pot package in Nebraska leads to possible prison time for Colorado man appeared first on The Cannabist. […]

Mind-altering breast milk? New marijuana study poses that question.

CHICAGO — Marijuana’s main mind-altering ingredient was detected in nursing mothers’ breast milk in a small study that comes amid evidence that more U.S. women are using pot during pregnancy and afterward.

Experts say the ingredient, THC, has chemical properties that could allow it to disrupt brain development and potentially cause harm, although solid evidence of that is lacking.

The new study involved 50 nursing mothers who were using pot and provided breast milk samples to researchers at the University of California, San Diego. Lab testing found small amounts of THC, the psychoactive chemical that causes marijuana’s “high,” in 34 of 54 samples up to six days after they were provided. Another form of THC and cannabidiol, a pot chemical touted by some as a health aid, were detected in five samples.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


Marijuana’s main mind-altering ingredient was detected in nursing mothers’ breast milk in a small study that comes amid evidence that more U.S. women are using pot during pregnancy and afterward.
The post Mind-altering breast milk? New marijuana study poses that question. appeared first on The Cannabist. […]

Mandatory testing costly for Colorado marijuana growers

By Bart Schaneman

DENVER — New mandatory marijuana pesticide testing in Colorado is putting a financial squeeze on local cultivators to the tune of thousands of dollars in increased costs.

The added expense is the latest financial blow to hit the state’s cultivators, which are already struggling with falling wholesale prices and a glut of product.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


New mandatory marijuana pesticide testing in Colorado is putting a financial squeeze on local cultivators to the tune of thousands of dollars in increased costs.
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Denver’s second licensed social marijuana business to open this fall as vaping bar and lounge

Denver’s licensing director signed off Friday on the city’s second license for a marijuana consumption area in a business, paving the way for a vaping bar and lounge to open this fall.

The owners of Vape and Play plan to open the 21-and-over social lounge and entertainment venue in November or sooner, depending on the timing of a renovation of the building at 1753 S. Broadway. Co-owner Taylor Rosean says the lounge will be centered around a “multi-station, saloon-style vape bar,” though customers will have to bring their own marijuana per the rules of Denver’s 2016 voter-passed Initiative 300.

Because of restrictions contained in the initiative and regulations added by the city, prospective applicants for I-300 licenses have run into roadblocks in trying to open businesses.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


Denver’s licensing director signed off Friday on the city’s second license for a marijuana consumption area in a business, paving the way for a vaping bar and lounge to open this fall on South Broadway.
The post Denver’s second licensed social marijuana business to open this fall as vaping bar and lounge appeared first on The Cannabist. […]

Backyard marijuana grow bust in Pueblo West yields 57 plants worth estimated $171K

A 58-year-old woman was arrested Tuesday afternoon when sheriff’s deputies found a suspected illegal marijuana grow, and evidence of a butane hash oil operation, at a Pueblo West home.

Debra Luck was arrested on suspicion of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, extraction of marijuana concentrate and cultivation of marijuana, according to a sheriff’s office news release.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


A 58-year-old woman was arrested Tuesday afternoon when sheriff’s deputies found an illegal marijuana grow, and evidence of a butane hash oil operation, at her Pueblo West home.
The post Backyard marijuana grow bust in Pueblo West yields 57 plants worth estimated $171K appeared first on The Cannabist. […]

Corona beer brewer extends pot bet with $3.8 billion investment

By Eric Pfanner, Kristine Owram and Jen Skerritt

Constellation Brands is spending C$5 billion ($3.8 billion) to boost its stake in Canadian cannabis grower Canopy Growth Corp., betting legalization of the drug will continue to gain traction in the U.S. and around the world.

Constellation, the brewer of Corona beer, will raise its stake in Canopy to 38 percent in what the companies described was the biggest investment in the burgeoning marijuana industry yet, according to a statement Wednesday. The agreement, which could eventually give the Victor, New York-based beverage company control, follows an initial purchase of about a 10 percent stake last year. Canopy shares jumped 33 percent to C$42.95 at 9:53 a.m, giving it a market value of C$9.36 billion. Constellation fell 7.2 percent to $205.79 in New York.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


Constellation Brands is spending C$5 billion ($3.8 billion) to boost its stake in Canadian cannabis grower Canopy Growth Corp., betting legalization of the drug will continue to gain traction in the U.S. and around the world.
The post Corona beer brewer extends pot bet with $3.8 billion investment appeared first on The Cannabist. […]

1 in 7 Canadian pot users drove high in the past 3 months

By Amanda Coletta, Special To The Washington Post

TORONTO – With two months to go before recreational cannabis is legalized in Canada on Oct. 17, new data from the country’s national statistics agency is stoking fears about drugged driving and raising questions about the ability of law enforcement officials to detect impairment.

According to Statistics Canada data released last week, 1 in 7 cannabis users with a valid driver’s license has hopped behind the wheel within two hours of consuming the drug at least once within the past three months.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


TORONTO – With two months to go before recreational cannabis is legalized in Canada on Oct. 17, new data from the country’s national statistics agency is stoking fears about drugged driving and raising questions about the ability of law enforcement officials to detect impairment.
The post 1 in 7 Canadian pot users drove high in the past 3 months appeared first on The Cannabist. […]

Federal agencies removed more than 71,000 marijuana plants from Colorado public lands in 2017

Federal agencies removed more than 71,000 marijuana plants from public lands during last year’s growing season, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Colorado office.

The plants were growing illegally on about 38 acres, not including the islands of the Colorado River. These grows are ones that operate outside of the laws established for Colorado’s legal cannabis industry.

The marijuana growing season typically runs from early summer through the fall.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.


Federal agencies removed more than 71,000 marijuana plants from public lands during last year’s growing season, according to a news release from the U.S.
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Denver marijuana sales reach record high of $587 million, sales across state continue to rise

Denver dispensaries sold more than $587 million in marijuana in 2017 even as sales in shops in other parts of the state continue to grow.

The post Denver marijuana sales reach record high of $587 million, sales across state continue to rise appeared first on The Cannabist.

Denver dispensaries sold more than $587 million in marijuana in 2017 even as sales in shops in other parts of the state continue to grow.

The post Denver marijuana sales reach record high of $587 million, sales across state continue to rise appeared first on The Cannabist.

This is a demo store for testing purposes — no orders shall be fulfilled. Dismiss