Demand Protection For Consumers At The Canadian Border

Generic 14 December 2018 | 0 Comments

Legal Marijuana Sales Being in Canada

Legal Marijuana Sales Being in Canada

Following Canada’s decision to become the first country in North America to legalize the use and retail sale of cannabis, the US Department of Homeland Security, US Customs and Border Protection Agency published a memorandum affirming that those Canadians either involved or invested in the legal cannabis industry may be barred admission into the United States. The agency modified their policy directive on October 9, 2018, acknowledging: “A Canadian citizen working in … the legal marijuana industry in Canada, coming to the US for reasons unrelated to the marijuana industry will generally be admissible to the United States. However, if a traveler is found to be coming to the US for reason related to the marijuana industry, they may be deemed inadmissible.”

In response to this hard-line position, Representative Earl Blumenauer, the founder of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, has introduced the Maintaining Appropriate Protections For Legal Entry Act (HR 7275), or The MAPLE Act for short.

This legislation provides protections for individuals whose actions are “lawful in the State, Indian Tribe, or foreign country in which the conduct occurred” or that was “subsequently made lawful under the law or regulation of such jurisdiction,” in regard to the emerging legal status of marijuana in the United States and internationally.

You can send a message to your Representative in support of The Maple Act by clicking here. 

There have already been examples of the United State’s punitive border policy needlessly wrecking lives. In one such example, an individual received a lifetime ban from entering the United States on November 14th simply because he was an investor in a legal Canadian marijuana business.

It is crucial that the United States recognizes the rights of both our citizens and our international allies to be able to travel freely between our two nations, and to reform federal border policies to acknowledge this new reality.

Click here to tell your lawmaker to support The Maple Act. 

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Congress Lifts Longstanding Ban on Hemp Production

Generic 14 December 2018 | 0 Comments

Washington, DC: House and Senate lawmakers have approved legislation, The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (aka ‘The Farm Bill’), which for the first time includes provisions lifting the United States’ centuries-long prohibition on domestic, commercial hemp production. The President is anticipated to sign the bill into law in the coming days.

“The significance of this law change should not be underemphasized,” NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano said. “This law marks the first change in the federal classification of the cannabis plant since it was initially classified as a schedule I controlled substance by Congress in 1970, and paves the way for the first federally-sanctioned commercial hemp grows since World War II.”

He added, “As statewide and public support in favor of broader marijuana reforms continues to grow, it is apparent that this federal change won’t be the last when it comes to the cannabis plant.”

The hemp-specific provisions of the Act amend the federal Controlled Substances Act of 1970 so that hemp plants containing no more than 0.3 percent THC are no longer classified as a schedule I controlled substance under federal law. The Act also broadens the definition of ‘hemp’ (Section 297A) to include “any part of the plant, including …. extracts [or] cannabinoids” that do not possess greater than 0.3 percent THC on a dry weight basis.

The Act (Section 297B) permits those US states that wish to possess “primary regulatory authority over the production of hemp” to submit a plan to the US Secretary of Agriculture. The agency has 60 days to approve, disapprove, or amend the plan. In instances where a state-proposed plan is not approved, “it shall be unlawful to produce hemp in that state … without a license.” Federal grant opportunities will be available to licensed commercial farmers, as will the ability for farmers to obtain crop insurance. The Act does not federally recognize non-licensed, non-commercial hemp cultivation activities.

Nothing in the new language (Section 297D) shall “affect or modify” the existing regulatory powers of the US Food and Drug Administration or other agencies with regard to the enforcement of the US Food, Drugs, and Cosmetics Act or the Public Health Service Act. The FDA has previously acknowledged: “We’ll continue to take action when we see the illegal marketing of CBD-containing products with unproven medical claims. We’re especially concerned when these products are marketed for serious or life threatening diseases, where the illegal promotion of an unproven compound could discourage a patient from seeking other therapies that have proven benefits.”

Interstate commerce in hemp and hempen goods is permitted under the Act (Section 10114).

NORML Political Director Justin Strekal said: “These changes represent a significant and long overdue shift in US policy. Nonetheless, future regulatory efforts will likely still be required to address emerging consumer issues when it comes to the commercial sale and marketing of certain hemp-derived products, particularly so-called hemp-derived CBD extracts. For years, many of the producers of these products have navigated in a grey area of the law — manufacturing products of variable and sometimes questionable quality and safety. Now it is time for lawmakers to craft consistent benchmark safety and quality standards for hemp-derived CBD in order to increase consumer satisfaction and confidence as this nascent industry transitions into a legal marketplace.”

On Background:

What is hemp?

Unlike traditional cannabis, which is primarily grown for the purpose of harvesting its flowers, industrial hemp is a fibrous crop grown mainly for its stalk and seeds — which can be utilized in the manufacturing of textiles, paper, animal feed, food-stuffs and numerous other products. Because only trace levels of THC, the primary psychotropic compound in marijuana, is present in hemp, most countries — including Canada and Japan — appropriately define it as an agricultural crop and not as a controlled substance. In fact, according to the Congressional Research Service, “The United States is the only developed nation in which industrial hemp is not an established crop.”

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol is one of a number of naturally occurring cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. It possesses a number of known therapeutic effects, such as anxioltytic and anti-convulsant effects. Like other cannabinoids, it is most prominent in cannabis flowers, and not in the plant’s stalks. As a result, some experts opine, “Traditional hemp is an inefficient source of CBD.” Federal agencies have generally opined that CBD sourced from traditional cannabis meets the criteria of a schedule I controlled substance.

Can’t some states already grow hemp?

Yes. Under Sec. 7606 of the 2014 Farm Act, states may license farmers to cultivate hemp as part of a university-sanction pilot program. Over 40 states have enacted legislation permitting such activity.

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Texas NORML Announces Dates for Capitol Meet and Greet, Advocacy Training and 2019 Lobby Day

Generic 14 December 2018 | 0 Comments

We already have a lot of events on the calendar for 2019. Check out few highlights below!

Tuesday, January 8, 2019 – Opening Day – Capitol Meet & Greet

Join Texas NORML and Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy at the Capitol on the first day of the 86th legislative session! Opening day is one of ceremony and gratitude. It’s a great day to visit your legislator’s Capitol office and meet his/her staff. It’s not a day for lobbying, but certainly offers an opportunity to enrich your relationship with your legislators. Complimentary Breakfast Thanks to GRAV Labs!

Follow event page for updates.


Saturday, January 12, 2019 – Capitol Advocacy Workshop

This training event is designed to help you become a more effective advocate for marijuana law reform in Texas and to prepare you to lobby effectively for our bills during the Legislative Session. This training event will offer you the tools you need to make effective arguments, dispel common myths, confidently communicate with your legislators, and positively affect policy during the upcoming legislative session. Please pre-register for this event so we can have adequate supplies for all attendees.

Follow event page for updates.


Thursday, February 7, 2019 – Texas Marijuana Policy Lobby Day

Our broad coalition and united efforts will bring about more responsible marijuana policies in the Lone Star State! We are excited to team up with our coalition members to host another huge Lobby Day. Our broad coalition and united efforts will bring about more responsible marijuana policies in the Lone Star State. Since there will be hundreds of Texans participating, it is imperative that you pre-register for this event.

Follow the event page for updates and more information on caravans from Houston and DFW.

We also will be hosting our Monthly Meetings, several other special events at the Capitol (including Veteran, Patient and Senior Lobby Days), Direct Actions every other week during the session and multiple educational exhibits. Keep up to date by following our Event Page or adding our calendar to yours!

Marijuana policy should be evidence based. Dispel the myths with the NORML Fact Sheets. For more information follow Texas NORML on Facebook, Twitter, and visit their website!

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Cannabis-based drug in combination with other anti-spasticity

Did you know that? 14 December 2018 | 0 Comments

Oral spray containing two compounds derived from the cannabis plant reduced spasticity compared with placebo in patients already taking anti-spasticity drugs.

Take This Short Survey to Help Shape Marijuana Policy in New York

Generic 13 December 2018 | 0 Comments

How much cannabis do you consume? How much do you pay for your cannabis? How much extra would you pay for cannabis delivery? How often do you share your cannabis with friends?

New York State plans to legalize cannabis for adult-use with the 2019 Budget in April. The time is NOW to make your voice heard loud and clear!

The New York State Department of Health, in partnership with NYU and RAND, want to know your (anonymous) answers to these questions, and more! Please take this short survey to offer your first hand experience as a cannabis consumer, advocate, or supporter in New York. Answers will be used to help shape the legislation currently being drafted that is going to determine what the the adult-use cannabis market will look like.

Survey responses are requested ASAP, but will be accepted until January 15th. Please send this survey to your friends and family, pull out your phone during holiday parties and ask people to fill it out, and talk to your co-workers (if they’re cool) and ask them the fill out the survey. We need to get at least 1,000 cannabis consumers, advocates, and supporters to fill out the survey. Will you help us reach this goal?

Click here to submit your survey response now.

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