Zimbabwe President Commissions $27 Million Medical Cannabis Plant

The president of Zimbabwe on Wednesday reportedly commissioned a farm and processing plant for medical cannabis cultivation worth $27 million.

Business Insider reports that President Emmerson Mnangagwa “commissioned the medical cannabis farm, and processing plant at Mount Hampden set up by Swiss Bioceuticals Limited in West Province, Zimbabwe…to produce cannabis (mbanje or dagga) for medical and scientific purposes,” saying in a speech that “the rapid development of the processing plant, which adds significant value to the crop, was a testimony of the success of the Government’s engagement policy and the confidence Swiss companies and investors had in Zimbabwe and its economy.”

“This milestone is a testimony of the successes of my Government’s Engagement and Re-engagement Policy. It further demonstrates the confidence that Swiss companies have in our economy through their continued investment in Zimbabwe. I extend my profound congratulations to the Swiss Bioceuticals Limited for this timely investment in the medicinal cannabis farm, processing plant and value chain, worth US$27 million,” Mnangagwa said in a speech on Wednesday, as quoted by Business Insider.

Business Insider reported that the president “added that the investors should follow the company’s lead and open their business to support the mantra that ‘Zimbabwe is Open for Business and be ready to generate foreign currency generation for the country.”

The announcement of the farm comes nearly three years after the country did away with its laws banning the cultivation of cannabis as it looked to produce a new crop to export. A year before that, in 2018, the country legalized medical cannabis.

The repeal of the ban is part of a concerted effort by Zimbabwe to pivot from its longtime major exporter, tobacco, of which it is the leading producer on the continent.

As tobacco exports bring in far less money to Zimbabwe farmers and producers than they used to, many in the country’s industry have shifted to cannabis production.

In reporting on the repeal of the cannabis ban in 2019, Bloomberg noted that the country was seeking “to boost export revenue and offset the global campaign against tobacco, a major source of foreign currency,” with Zimbabwe officials saying at the time that it would initially be focused on hemp and medicinal cannabis.

Earlier this week, Reuters detailed the country’s still-young medical cannabis industry and how farmers there have adapted.

Reuters, citing Barclays analysts, reported that the “global cannabis industry could be worth $272 billion by 2028,” and that “Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube has said the country wants at least $1 billion of that—more than it currently makes from its top agricultural export tobacco.”

Reuters spotlighted a 35-year-old Zimbabwean grower named Munyaradzi Nyanungo, who has been issued one of the 57 cannabis operating licenses in the country.

“We stand to sell cannabis at $25 per kilogramme, which is five, six times more than what a good tobacco crop can give you. We are actually sitting on a green gold mine,” Nyanungo told Reuters.

Nyanungo has a U.S.-based partner in “King Kong Organics, which supplies seed and other inputs, purchased the greenhouses under an off-take agreement that will see the company buying the cannabis crop for processing.”

On Wednesday, Mnangagwa, the country’s president, “also urged other investors with permits to quickly operationalize their permits and licenses for the benefit of the economy in general and people in particular,” according to Business Insider.

“I challenge other players within the medicinal cannabis sub-sector to speedily set up their enterprises, focusing on value addition and beneficiation. It is disappointing that since 2018, only 15 out of the 57 entities issued with cannabis operating [licenses] have been operational,” Mnangagwa said, as quoted by Business Insider.

The post Zimbabwe President Commissions $27 Million Medical Cannabis Plant appeared first on High Times.

6 Rock Stars who Rock the Cannabis Business

Some rock stars aren’t just rocking the stage — they also rock their own cannabis business.  With the creativity and empathy-enhancing effects, it makes sense why many musicians are open about their love of Mary Jane, whether for creativity, medical reasons, or just for fun. You may have heard of brands like Leafs by Snoop, TICAL, […]

The post 6 Rock Stars who Rock the Cannabis Business appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Granny Flips Off Police in Mugshot After Cannabis Farm Bust

When law enforcement officers searched an elderly woman’s house and farm last Monday in Jackson County, Tennessee, they got more than they bargained for.

Peggy Brewington told officers that there was “maybe an ounce” of pot on her farm before officers searched the premises and found dozens of cannabis plants and 20 pounds of flower.

After Drug Task Force officers booked the woman, she flipped off the camera for her mugshot as a token of defiance. 

On August 30, the 15th Drug Task Force and Jackson County Sheriff’s Office conducted a search on the property after slowly building a case against her. Three days earlier, on August 27, Brewington was arrested for trespassing. The 15th judicial district Drug and Violent Crimes Task Force covers Trousdale, Smith, Macon, Jackson and Wilson Counties in Tennessee.

Photo courtesy of the 15th Drug Task Force Tennessee.

Officers confronted Brewington and asked how much pot was in the residence. Brewington replied, “maybe about an ounce.” Once the search was completed, officers recovered around 20 pounds of flower from the residence and approximately 40 cannabis plants from the property. 

A second search was conducted at a nearby residence and more growing marijuana and processed cannabis was recovered. All drug cases will be presented to the Jackson County Grand Jury. Agencies assisting with the search were the TBI and THP Eradication Task Force.

“Officers recovered over 20 pounds of marijuana from the residence and approximately 40 marijuana plants from the property,” the post reads. “A second search was conducted at a nearby residence and more growing marijuana and processed marijuana was recovered. All drug cases will be presented to the Jackson County Grand Jury.”

bust
Photo courtesy of the 15th Drug Task Force Tennessee.

The officers at 15th Drug Task Force Tennessee—a government organization—posted three additional photos of lush cannabis plants being ripped from the soil on her farm and tossed in bags like trash.

Brewington was arrested, and promptly flipped off the camera in her mugshot, which is likely to go viral. In line with other cannabis-related arrest posts, reactions were mixed, and many commenters questioned if the streets are any safer without a nonviolent elderly woman growing pot in peace.

Marijuana in Tennessee is a Bust, So Far

As noted by some concerned commenters on the post of the arrest, “a law is a law,” and it’s illegal to grow cannabis, especially in the amounts Ms. Brewington was growing. Medical and adult-use cannabis cultivation and sales are illegal in the state. But that’s likely to change in Tennessee, possibly sooner than later.

Representative Bruce Griffey, a Republican representing District 75, introduced House Bill 1634 last month, slated for the 2022 ballot in the state. 

Tennessee still does not have a cannabis industry, and is only one of 14 states that still does not have some type of medical system in place. Call it an “island of prohibition.”

Senate Bill 854 was sponsored by Senator Janice Bowling and would have legalized medical cannabis for certain patients and developed a Medical Cannabis Commission that would have regulated the production and sale of cannabis. While the Senate Government Operations Committee approved the bill back in March, it was rejected by the Senate Judiciary Committee later that month.

Tennessee voters consistently support cannabis according to polls, but the state doesn’t have a voter initiative process. That means only elected officials can change state law, so the ballot initiative for 2022 won’t complete the entire process of legalization. For now, people like Brewington will have to resort to other, law-abiding hobbies.

The post Granny Flips Off Police in Mugshot After Cannabis Farm Bust appeared first on High Times.

Pot Power Couple: Beyoncé Builds Hemp Farm as Jay-Z’s Company Appoints CEO

In what Business Insider called “the world’s top power couple,” Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter and Beyoncé branched out beyond the fashion, movie and music industries to invest in cannabis—both with a heavy focus on social equity and reparations for the impact of the War on Drugs. 

Last year, Beyoncé’s BeyGood organization partnered with the NAACP to provide new small business grants for Black-owned businesses. A $10,000 grant was given to The Gift—a  Maryland-based cannabis company founded in 2018.

But recently the diva is getting involved with hemp herself. During an interview with Harper’s Bazaar published on August 10, Beyoncé explained how she discovered the powers of CBD, notably for soothing her muscles and for helping her fall asleep.

Touring constantly can add up for the 39-year-old. “I discovered CBD on my last tour, and I’ve experienced its benefits for soreness and inflammation. It helped with my restless nights and the agitation that comes from not being able to fall asleep,” she said.

Beyoncé explained that she also believes in the healing properties of honey—which is what eventually led her to decide to build a hemp and honey farm. “I’m building hemp and a honey farm. I’ve even got hives on my roof!” she added. Unfortunately, there aren’t more details about the farm, such as whether or not she plans to go commercial with hemp, such as actor Jim Belushi.

Raw honey itself is packed with nutrients and provides medicinal qualities, and CBD-infused honey is already a thing, with dozens of companies catching onto the craze. While Jay-Z’s MONOGRAM offers THC-rich flower products, people are already speculating about a hemp/CBD line with Beyoncé’s name attached to it.

The Parent Company and Jay-Z Appoint CEO

Meanwhile, Jay-Z continues to stay busy with his numerous pot investments. On August 16, The Parent Company announced that it appointed Troy Datcher as CEO. The Parent Company is behind Jay-Z’s MONOGRAM line of cannabis products.

Effective September 8, Datcher’s historic appointment represents the “first time a Black CEO will lead a major public U.S. cannabis organization,” the press release reads. 

“I’m truly honored to be at the forefront of shaping the future of the cannabis industry with The Parent Company,” Datcher stated. “This is a tremendously strong company that is poised for continued growth and we have a unique opportunity to disrupt a sector that has disproportionately impacted communities of color—including my own—for far too long.

Troy Datcher, Incoming Chief Executive Officer of The Parent Company (CNW Group/TPCO Holding Corp.)

“This is a chance to partner with cultural powerhouses like JAY-Z and Desiree Perez to rectify the wrongs of prohibition, eradicate antiquated laws and create a new cannabis infrastructure rooted in diversity, equity and justice for our communities. Together, we can shape a legal cannabis industry that is reflective of our entire culture in California and beyond,” said Datcher.

Datcher formerly worked for The Clorox Company, where he most recently served as Senior Vice President and Chief Customer Officer. While there, Datcher deployed global sales plans for over $6.7 billion in annual revenue across The Clorox Company’s list of brands.

MONOGRAM, a part of The Parent Company, launched a series of campaigns to bring awareness to social equity issues, as people remain in jail for doing essentially the same thing as corporate cannabis businesses do, minus the licenses. Long-term data shows that Black people are 3.73 times more likely to be arrested for cannabis than white people despite nearly equal usage. Furthermore, people with cannabis arrests have trouble participating in the legal industry.

“Troy’s business acumen, strategic thinking and leadership skills are invaluable qualities that will be critical to our organization’s growth,” said The Parent Company Chief Social Equity Officer and Board Member Desiree Perez. “He understands and embraces the unique responsibility we have to redefine the cannabis industry and establish a new precedent for cannabis entrepreneurs to build successful businesses. I look forward to watching him grow into this position and taking The Parent Company to new heights.”

The post Pot Power Couple: Beyoncé Builds Hemp Farm as Jay-Z’s Company Appoints CEO appeared first on High Times.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Tuesday, August 25, 2020 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// ‘It rained fire’: A California cannabis grower’s hellish wildfire fight (Leafly)

// Biden Administration Will Pursue Marijuana Decriminalization, VP Pick Harris Says (Marijuana Moment)

// Vermont Lawmakers Approach Legal Marijuana Sales Agreement Amid Conference Negotiations (Marijuana Moment)


These headlines are brought to you by Curaleaf, one of the leading vertically-integrated cannabis operators in the U.S. With legal medical and adult use marijuana dispensaries, cultivation sites, and processing facilities all over the United States, Curaleaf has served more than 350,000 medical cannabis patients and looks forward to helping many more long into the future. Swing over to Curaleaf.com to learn more about this very cool company!


// Green Thumb Industries Looks to Raise $150 Million (THC Net)

// More licensed cannabis stores coming to Manitoba (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Jamaica reports $1.3 million in B2B cannabis trade as license issuances rise (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Washington State Wants Help Studying Smelly Marijuana Business Emissions (Marijuana Moment)

// The Feds Are Refusing to Give COVID PPE Supplies to Businesses That Sell CBD (Merry Jane)

// Colorado Towns Considering New Marijuana Businesses (Denver Westword)

// International Coloring Book Publisher Signs Contract with ‘Father of Legal Cannabis’ Global Entrepreneur Steven DeAngelo (EIN Presswire)


Check out our other projects:Marijuana Today— Our flagship title, a weekly podcast examining the world of marijuana business and activism with some of the smartest people in the industry and movement. • Marijuana Media Connect— A service that connects industry insiders in the legal marijuana industry with journalists, bloggers, and writers in need of expert sources for their stories.

Love these headlines? Love our podcast? Support our work with a financial contribution and become a patron.

Photo: Daria Devyatkina/Flickr

Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021

With a heavy heart, the official statement was released yesterday to announce the beloved Shambhala Music Festival will be postponed until July 2021. After weeks of uncertainty, the official announcement to postpone the festival has been made. It is important to acknowledge that this could not have been an easy decision to make. Ultimately, after […]

The post Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021 appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021

With a heavy heart, the official statement was released yesterday to announce the beloved Shambhala Music Festival will be postponed until July 2021. After weeks of uncertainty, the official announcement to postpone the festival has been made. It is important to acknowledge that this could not have been an easy decision to make. Ultimately, after […]

The post Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021 appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021

With a heavy heart, the official statement was released yesterday to announce the beloved Shambhala Music Festival will be postponed until July 2021. After weeks of uncertainty, the official announcement to postpone the festival has been made. It is important to acknowledge that this could not have been an easy decision to make. Ultimately, after […]

The post Shambhala Music Festival has officially been postponed until July 2021 appeared first on Latest Cannabis News Today – Headlines, Videos & Stocks.

Monday, August 19, 2019 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Monday, August 19, 2019 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Illicit Cannabis Vape Carts Hospitalized 7 in California Doctors Say (Leafly)

// ‘I feel lucky for real’: How legalizing hemp accidentally helped marijuana suspects (NBC News)

// FBI investigating possible corruption in US cannabis industry (Marijuana Business Daily)


Today’s headlines are brought to you by our friends over at McCabe Law LLC of Portland Maine, which is partnering with the Climate Resources Group to throw a series of cannabis seminars starting Tuesday, August 20th, and running every 20th of the month through October. Attendees will get the straight scoop on the best way to get started in Maine’s legal cannabis industry. Find out more and purchase your own ticket at https://www.mccabelawllc.com/seminars.html.


// Marijuana giant Harvest agrees to relinquish two dispensary permits after Pennsylvania probe (Philadelphia Inquirer)

// Ex-Cop is First Individual Licensed to Sell Medical Cannabis in Canada (Leafly)

// Barbados latest Caribbean country to propose sweeping medical cannabis law (Marijuana Business Daily)

// Canopy executive compensation surges to $28.5 million following pot legalization (BNN Bloomberg)

// Texas School District Will Now Expel Any Student Caught with a THC Vape Pen (Merry Jane)

// Second manufacturer joins Iowa’s medical marijuana program (KPVI 6 NBC)

// Whitefield Farmers Test New Market with Pick-Your-Own Hemp Fields (Lincoln County News)


Check out our other projects:
Marijuana Today— Our flagship title, a weekly podcast examining the world of marijuana business and activism with some of the smartest people in the industry and movement.
Marijuana Media Connect— A service that connects industry insiders in the legal marijuana industry with journalists, bloggers, and writers in need of expert sources for their stories.

Love these headlines? Love our podcast? Support our work with a financial contribution and become a patron.

Photo: Chris H/Flickr

California Weed Farmers Look to Mimic Wine’s Region-Specific Labels

Some California cannabis farmers are looking to borrow the wine industry’s practice of verifying products by origin.

In the United States and internationally, wine that’s grown only within certain legally and geographically defined regions, called an appellation of origin or a viticultural area, can earn the right to claim heritage from that area. Now cannabis growers in Northern California’s Emerald Triangle, regarded as the top cannabis farming area in the U.S., are looking for the same kind of protection. 

Located north of California‘s famous wine country, encompassing Napa and Sonoma counties, the Emerald Triangle comprises Humboldt, Mendocino, and Trinity counties. Growers there hope that by creating their own state-approved appellations of origin designations that they can protect and promote the region’s unique growing conditions, strain varieties, and eco-friendly styles of cultivation.

What makes Humboldt weed special?

“We are talking about a living plant. And a living plant that is cultivated within a living system. So we are looking at where is the natural habitat where it will best perform, and perform to its full expression,” said Tina Gordon, owner of Humboldt County’s Moon Made Farms. 

“It’s the full-spectrum sunlight. It’s the night sky. It’s the temperature shifting. It’s the fresh air, it’s the rain caught water, it’s the proximity to the ocean, it’s the wind,” Gordon said. “So if you think about it like a grow room, we have the greatest grow room on earth.”


‘It’s the full-spectrum sunlight. It’s the night sky. It’s the temperature shifting. So if you think about it like a grow room, we have the greatest grow room on earth.’
Click To Tweet


Moon Made Farms employs organic, sun-grown techniques that tap into the native soil as well as ancient natural practices such as lunar cycle farming, Moon Made Farms is one of a handful of old-school independent cannabis farms located in the Palo Verde area of southern Humboldt County working on giving their watershed and community a world-recognized wine-style appellation of origin designation, which the French call an appellation d’origine contrôleé (AOC). Italy uses the designation denominazione di origine controllata (DOC).  The Palo Verde appellation would be just one of many established throughout the Emerald Triangle, most in areas that have been cultivating cannabis for decades.

“We are pushing for an AOC model that many people are familiar with in Europe,” said Kristin Nevedal, the executive director of the International Cannabis Farmer’s Alliance (ICFA). In countries such as France and Switzerland, appellation designations are used to ensure strict adherence to certain growing conditions and cultivation within a specific micro-region, known as terroir. 

“In the most traditional and classic sense of the matter, appellation designations are regulatory programs. In order to wear that designation, you have to meet some high standards in most cases. In the case of Champagne, you are limited to three different varietals you can grow. But these also have nutrient restrictions, water restrictions, etc. So they really are focused on cultivating in a way and manner that those grapes express the natural environment of that region,” Nevedal explained.

If and when regulators allow licensed cultivators to establish cannabis appellations, growers in the Palo Verde watershed and community are ready to label cannabis grown there with a tentative appellation seal, designed by Robert Steffano of Villa Paradiso Farms in southern Humboldt County, California. (Courtesy of Robert Steffano)

When Californians in 2016 passed Proposition 64, which legalized adult-use cannabis, the state legislature directed the California Department of Food and Agriculture, through the CalCannabis Office, to establish a process for designating appellations for standards, practices, and varietals in cannabis growing regions.

However, the actual creation of the AOC is left up to the cultivators themselves. The ICFA, which was formed to advocate for small cannabis farmers, is actively applying for a grant through the Headwaters Fund in Humboldt County to help establish appellations such as Palo Verde. The organization also is helping Mendocino County develop nearly a dozen different AOCs, which the county identified on a map in 2015.

A poster shows the proposed Palo Verde appellation for cannabis grown in Humboldt, Mendocino, or Trinity counties in California’s Emerald Triangle. (Courtesy of Robert Steffano)

“That map has been powerful in spurring the conversation in terms of what appellations might look like and some of those components will be very important to us as we move forward with developing the California Appellation Program,” Nevedal said. “What we expect is that the California Department of Food and Agriculture, through CalCannabis, will issue a draft regulation around appellation of origin by late 2019, and we will have the program in place by 2021 as a statute.”

Nevedal emphasized that unlike the county of origin designation, which labels California cannabis by the county it is produced in an inclusive way, the appellation of origin designation is highly exclusive by nature. It is hoped that by designating select Emerald Triangle marijuana farms with AOC certifications, growers can develop a reputation and prestige that cannot be matched by large commercial grows. The label also intends to give consumers a connection to the farms and communities themselves.

Tina Gordon owns Moon Made Farms in Humboldt County, California, in the Palo Verde region, where growers are seeking recognition for a designated growing area similar to wine appellations. (Photo courtesy of Moon Made Farms)

“Palo Verde, it is a heritage community,” Gordon said, explaining that the region was founded by back-to-the-landers who came to raise families in southern Humboldt County in the ’70s and ’80s, making the area part of the country’s original cannabis cultivation region.

“I would love to see [the Palo Verde AOC] connect people to source and to place,” she continued. “So I want them to be transported to the full sun, full night sky, open-air landscape with pristine, fresh inputs and nature’s full influence.” 

For Gordon, the appeal to consumers is akin to what has driven explosive growth in the organic food movement, which broke $100 billion in global sales for the first time in 2018. Gordon said that organic, sun-grown cannabis is not only is better for the environment, but also is a cleaner product that is healthier for the consumer, adding that cultivators believe that full-spectrum sunlight produces a better cannabinoid and terpene profile than indoor-grown weed. 

While the cannabinoids THC and CBD get lots of limelight, experts have long claimed that the interaction between different compounds, known as the entourage effect, is responsible for many of the plant’s medicinal properties, as well as the differences in experience between various strains and qualities of cannabis. Recognizing this, the federal government recently called for new studies into the properties of lesser-known cannabinoids and terpenes, the latter responsible for the strong aroma and flavors of cannabis.

The craft cannabis cultivated in the Emerald Triangle’s designated appellations of origin would showcase the strains developed in the area over the decades. The label also would verify that the farms’ growing conditions are certified by the state as meeting exacting cultivation standards. In addition, the cannabis, like wine, could claim to express the flavors and characteristics of a specific terroir, or micro-region, just like AOC designations do in France. 

The result, supporters claim, is a product that, like fine wine, stands head and shoulders above mass-produced marijuana.


Featured Image: Tina Gordon, founder of Moon Made Farms, is among the Emerald Triangle cannabis growers advocating for state-approved designations that could protect and promote the region’s unique growing conditions, strain varieties, and eco-friendly styles of cultivation. (Photo courtesy of Moon Made Farms)

The post California Weed Farmers Look to Mimic Wine’s Region-Specific Labels appeared first on Weedmaps News.