Quality Genetics: The Most Important Factor in Cannabis Sales and Marketing

You can have a state-of-the-art cannabis cultivation facility, but if you don’t have the quality strains people demand, you won’t generate as much money as you could. That is, if you care about making money. Don’t believe me? Try to grow out and sell some strains like AK-47, White Widow, Early Pearl, Great White Shark, Skunk, Jack Herer, Durban Poison, or any of the classic strains that are currently not in demand. As a commercial cultivator and/or dispensary owner, it isn’t about what you like, it’s what’s in demand, and currently driving sales. There are very few classics that still stand the test of time like all the “Chemdog”, “Sour Diesel”, and “OG Kush” variants. The “Gas” Family as I like to call it.  No one is lining up, or camping out to get some “old” genetics, flower, or concentrates unfortunately. If you want to sell those strains, your target demographic market is going to be in the 40 and up age range. 

If cannabis genetics wasn’t such a major force in driving sales, dispensaries/cultivators wouldn’t be linking up to do licensing deals with these seed companies and brands, specifically for the genetics they possess under their brand. Personally, I wouldn’t have a problem with this tactic, if the cultivators acquiring the licensing deal actually grew good weed. Currently, most of the big cultivators who grow all these “Dessert-Themed” strains don’t grow good enough weed to justify the prices they are getting. You can only take people for a fool once, MAYBE twice, but the people falling for the hype are getting taken for a fool, and they are paying top dollar to look like a fool. How can you justify paying about $80 for 3.5g of weed that isn’t good? But some will overlook it because the mylar is flashy, and the strain name is trendy, but grown horribly. And you want to flex with that on social media when other people that know good quality know you are promoting garbage? You are making yourselves look like fools. The sales are mainly based off major advertising power that pushes these new strains. If you strip the marketing, branding, and strain from these licensed strains, 99% of them wouldn’t be able to stand on their own merits. It would probably collect dust on a shelf.

Years before recreational cannabis legalization, elite cannabis genetics were hard to acquire. Now, it’s available to the highest bidder. Currently, there’s an incredible amount of “Seed Banks” or “Clone Nurseries” that will send you just about every clone out there if you look hard enough. But everything will be irrelevant in a few months. It’s almost like fashion, or anything else trendy. Very few strains have the staying power to last in today’s quickly-evolving market. Due to that, we have almost every dispensary around the country wanting to grow the same genetics, based off of hype demand, and/or yield. If there was no hype, and demand for those genetics; they wouldn’t cultivate them. Just about all that hype, branding, and demand stems from the black market. Let’s be real for a minute. You really think dispensaries or RECREATIONAL cultivation facilities that are vertically integrated, that specialize in commercial flower production, are the ones making the next new strain to blow up? Ninety nine percent of them can barely grow good weed, and are usually last to grow the trendy strains because they don’t want to pay top dollar to source the genetics upon release, so you expect me to think they are putting in all that work that goes into breeding, hunting, and selecting strains properly? Let alone make anything anyone wants? Usually if I hear of a dispensary/licensed cultivation facility making seeds, it’s almost never intentional. I’d like to help be apart of that change. The end-user is the one who is driving demand, so it is up to the cultivators, budtenders, or someone on your team to know what’s currently popular, in-demand, coming up, and all that. It pays to have someone on your team whose got their ear to the streets. That is an important position to hold for the company. It always pays to be two steps ahead of your competition. That is partially what I have been doing with Dark Horse Genetics for the past five years.

Unfortunately, the end-user’s interest and demand has been changing faster than ever, due to social media always hyping up a new strain or brand. We’ve reached a point in time where smell, taste, burn, and efficacy are secondary, while visual appeal is driving sales. The flashier the mylar, and the darker the weed, the easier it is to make the sale it seems. Nowadays, something can LOOK flawless, but smell, taste, burn, and hit like garbage, and it will still sell. Add a flashy, die-cut mylar, slap a dessert name on it, market and brand it properly, and BAM! You are selling mids for a higher price point that you would have in unbranded bulk pounds. This tactic can only get you so far, and will only last for so long. If you want to future-proof yourself, here are a few recommendations I have for you to start your own wave, that is if you’d like to take my advice:

GROW FROM SEED!

Have an area where you can “pheno hunt” a good variety of several strains. Try and avoid growing all the same or similar type of genetics. Do you really need 12 different kinds of Gelatos, or RuntZ that all look, smell, and taste similar, with different dessert names? What makes you stand out above all the rest is having a good variety of something everyone wants, but no one can access unless it’s through you. If you grew out some seeds, and potentially found the next game-changer, like the next RuntZ, Gelato, ZkittleZ, something like that, there is A LOT of money to be made if you can market it properly and get it to the right hands.

Document and record the entire life cycle for the public to access. 

It seems to me since I have started making my own seeds under the brand #NYCeeds, documenting the entire growing cycle from start to finish will put you far ahead of your competition when it comes to data collected. I have slowly been building buzz on my new strains that I am planning on releasing in December. If there was no documentation, there would be no buzz, and nothing to build hype and demand. No one would know what I am doing, and what I plan on releasing if I don’t document the growth, and have some kind of social media presence. For me, it has been difficult to get off the ground since February 2022, but once everything started going, the momentum doesn’t look like it going to slow down. I have only been building more and more interest and demand since I started earlier this year. As of recent, I reversed SpritZer, and made several feminized crosses. All are currently being tested and documented on multiple platforms with a select few testers and will not release until testing is completed. Platforms like Instagram, YouTube,  Twitch, TikTok, Twitter, Reddit, and ESPECIALLY Discord are all vital tools you should be using to build a community of followers, and supporters. I can not stress this enough. USE DISCORD. It might take some time to learn, but this is one of the best platforms for cannabis documentation. These other platforms do not have draconian censorship rules in place like Instagram now does.

Public phenotype hunting

I noticed specific brands who grow from seed, getting the public involved in their pheno hunts. This is a great idea. The public is making you $, so why not get them involved in the process, and get lots of feedback to see which phenotype suits your customer-base best. The last thing you want to be is out of touch when it comes to knowing what sells, what is in demand, and what next strain wave is coming. If you want to be in the loop with all of that, you need to keep an ear to the streets. Find out what each customer likes if possible. Grow those strains, or something with that strain in it. DO NOT be afraid to ask questions. BE AFRAID to lose money, and be out of the loop. Include them in helping you narrow down your keeper(s). It isn’t always about yields, but some corporate entity reading this will probably laugh at that statement. Certain strains can yield high and test high in THC, but smell and taste like nothing. Those aren’t enjoyable. The strains with the most flavor usually don’t test high in THC. Look at ZkittleZ. Sour Diesel. Tangie. They don’t test high in THC, but their terpene content is out of this world. Aroma drives more sales than you might think. If something smells so good that I can taste it, I probably would want to spend my money on that. No strain has won more cannabis awards than ZkittleZ has in one year. It has nothing to do with yields, because it yields low. Not for it’s THC percentage, because it tests around 17%-19% THC. IT IS ALL ABOUT THE TERPS. You can keep your 40% THC. Show me the flower with 6-7% Terps! Custies and uneducated consumers buy weed based off the percentage. If you drink, do you go into a liquor store asking for their strongest? It’s usually Everclear, or do you get the lower percentage stuff which is more enjoyable? The lower percentage stuff usually is cheaper, but definitely more enjoyable.

Social media presence

I can not stress this enough. Without utilizing these tools at your disposal, you will not be able to reach as many potential customers as you could. Stop it with the old mentality, and learn something new for once. Especially if it’s beneficial. Just about every successful cannabis strain, breeder, or brand is out there is using social media. Not only do you have to use it, you have to keep it constantly updated with fresh content, or you will become irrelevant faster than you think. Utilizing these various tools to maximize outreach to create a larger audience with eyes on your product, brand, strain, etc. You better put that strain in front of everyone’s face as much as you can, as often as you can to get them interested. Get other big social media accounts to talk about your product. Cross-promoting is HUGE. If you can get people from not knowing about you, into wanting to try your product, you are doing something right. Just about all social media is free. Utilize it. You might need to pay someone monthly to operate your social media, but if they know how to build that audience, and get that reach, they are worth what they are asking. Content creation is making more and more money as we go deeper and deeper into this digitized world. 

Release your keeper clone as your upcoming project(s) is/are about to drop to maximize hype and demand.

It usually takes up to 2 years for a specific clone to gain popularity once it has been released. If the public sees it as good, you will see it being passed around, sold, bred with, and if it’s really good or popular, you will see everyone else but you make S1’s of your strain and sell it before you. If you want to avoid that, do all that work yourself before you release your genetics to the world. Be ahead of what others will try to do once you make your release. Look at M.A.C. from Capulator. The hype and demand was there once the seeds were available because he built that up with him releasing the M.A.C #1 Clone, only to those who deserved it. By the time the seeds were available to the public to access, Cap already made crosses with M.A.C, knowing everyone else would want to cash in on the hype. Once he released those seeds, several seed companies bred with the MAC, but Capulator was already ahead of everyone else by then. Look what happened with Purple Punch, Gorilla Glue #4, RuntZ, Gelato, OreoZ, Bruce Banner #3, ZkittleZ, etc. As soon as your genetics are accessible to the public, you’ll start seeing other people make a name off your work. This isn’t something you ask for to happen, it just happens if the genetics are worth it to the public eye, nose, and lungs. No one wants to breed with genetics that are bad, so everyone is always after the quality genetics or the hype genetics. You can be humbled if your work is being copied, or you can just future-proof yourself. Like Cap and other breeders/seed companies do, because they know what is to come once your Intellectual Property (your strains) are out there. Try staying ahead of the game if possible so you don’t get people capitalizing on your own wave. Most people get mad when they see their genetics get released through someone else other than the person who made or found that specific strain. If you made a strain that is in such high demand that people are wanting to take credit for it, you can always make another strain that people will want. If they know it came from you or you made it, you have a customer for life.

Be open to collaborating with other brands for maximum exposure/reach.

It really helps with exposure, and getting to other customers you normally wouldn’t have reached. If you can find a brand that is bigger than you to collaborate with you, this is what you would ultimately want, but feel free to uplift the smaller companies trying to make a name as well. One hand washes the other. It can be an ancillary brand as well. Non-cannabis-related brands can be just as successful as the cannabis brands, and vice-versa. It’s all about coming together with great ideas that both markets can appreciate and enjoy. These analogies might be a little out there, but look at Kanye West + Adidas, Travis Scott + McDonald’s, Fortnite + EVERYONE, Supreme + EVERYTHING; collaborations are a great way to generate alternate avenues of revenue and build a new following/customer base with the company you are collaborating with. Open yourself up to wanting to work with other cannabis, and non-cannabis brands. Cannabis breeders and seed companies collaborate all the time to make new strains, plus they help cross-promote each other. If you are a licensed cultivation facility, look for a good breeder/seed company with good references, and good public feedback from within the cannabis community.  Think about signing a licensing deal with that specific breeder/seed company  that actually has great genetics and great weed. Good person, good genetics, good strains, good ethics, and good public perception. Those are the people you want to align yourself with. You’d be surprised at the amount of seed companies that have okay genetics bred and ran by a sketchy, shady person that people in the cannabis community would never respect or support. 

Honesty is key. Don’t rename strains—be transparent.

No one who knows about good weed cares about celebrity-branded cannabis products. Most of the deals are complete garbage, and it seems people with the most money to spend on marketing tend to use this marketing tactic with celebrities to push their mediocre brands and product. Just about every cannabis brand backed by some celebrity is complete garbage. It is one of the worst bait-and-switches you could think of. You would think if a celebrity is going to be putting their name on a cannabis brand, that this would be their seal of approval. It’s completely false and unethical. It’s simply a cash grab.

Also, don’t rename the breeder’s strain name. It is one of the worst ethics violations in cannabis. If you don’t like the name, don’t grow it. Simple as that. Pheno hunt something else and put in the same work that others have done., vs. just buy a good clone and rename it and take the credit like you did something special. Breeders put hard work into branding strains and thinking of names only for you to just act like you can do whatever you want with the name is not okay. Call your specific phenotype whatever you want, but if someone asks what the cross is, do not lie about it. Some people don’t know the newer strain names, but will make their decision on the lineage. No one is out here renaming “vodka” to “tequila,” so how do you stand to benefit from withholding information, or switching stuff around, and calling things “indica” when you know that they are “sativa” and vice versa? It’s like erasing my name on my homework, and you submit it with your name on it.

I can call out too many dispensaries putting strains on their sativa shelf, when the genetics clearly state it isn’t a sativa. If an indica takes 8-9 weeks to flower, and a sativa takes 12-14 weeks to flower, why would I sell you something that took me longer, and cost more to produce for the same price as the stuff that took less time, effort, energy, work, and resources?  This is a major reason why real sativa strains aren’t on dispensary shelves. Greedy cultivators want more harvest in a year of the fastest flowering strain, but won’t grow the longer stuff to satisfy the sativa market, but will instead recategorize indicas and sell them as sativa when they know it is not. That can do some form of harm to someone who isn’t used to the opposite of what they are asking for, and it is not okay.

ESPECIALLY DO NOT rename someone else’s strain “Calm,” “Joy,” “Bliss,” or anything stupid like that. I don’t buy drinks called “Quench,” “Drink,” “Parched,” or food called “Hunger,” “Food,” or “Meal,” so why would I purchase my weed labeled in a similar fashion? No one buys weed like that, and no one should; if they do, it’s because of their lack of education. Teach them the effects and terpene profiles of different “indica” and “sativa” strains. How about trying to teach them correct information vs. perpetuating a lie? People should be making their decisions based on the strain lineage, terpene profiles, test results, and such. People loved being lied to, but no one wants to be lied to. I am incredibly blunt. I love telling the truth, because people hate to hear it. I do get a lot of hate for my blunt attitude, but it all comes from confidence, ethics, and passion which all stems from personal experience. I hate to see anyone get taken advantage of—especially in cannabis—so I highly suggest taking the time to learn more, or educate others with proper sources.

Please, if anyone needs help with specific cannabis genetics-related questions, I might be able to forward you to someone who can help if I can not. Please feel free to contact via email or my several social media links, or contact info down below.

(303)390-1234 Ext 703
Brand Ambassador of Dark Horse Genetics
Chief Genetics Officer of Dark Horse Clones
Cesar@DarkHorseGenetics.Com
TheKanyeOfCannabis@Gmail.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nyceedz/
Twitch: thcaeczar_
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgwVKddgOEJkqDRSucAIABQ
Discord:https://discord.gg/MBebNvqbHW 

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Global cannabis sales will grow to $57B but depend on new markets

As prohibition lifts an ugly grasp on cannabis, the new market prospers. BDSA is an analytics firm that tracks the industry through an enormous point-of-sale network. A recent report by the firm suggests global cannabis sales will grow to $57 Billion by 2026. This author spoke with the Founder and CEO but also Andy Seeger […]

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I’m Over Cannabis Brands That Don’t Like Cannabis Users

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: a new cannabis brand launches. The marketing is dialed in, and presented with buzzy words and pithy phrases. The packaging is minimalist and well-designed, with sleek fonts, clean lines, and a tasteful-but-neutral color scheme. Maybe there’s even a celebrity involved. The weed, which should be the focus, exists, but it’s boilerplate, grown en masse and sometimes flavored with botanical terpenes from other plants. It almost seems like an afterthought, and often it is. “Press release weed,” my friend and colleague Jimi Devine likes to call it.

For some people, the new wave of sexy-branding-meets-mediocre-product hits. Marketers expect this—many are banking their entire businesses on the fact that cannabis is scary to many people, thanks to the efforts of prohibitionists over the years. They’re hoping that there’s some untold “canna-curious” customer who has just been waiting for the OK from Uncle Sam to light up, and once they do, they’ll be hooked for life. Personally, I think that consumer archetype is one that type of marketing is intended for.

But for anyone who’s been smoking weed long and frequently enough, encountering sleek branding in today’s continually legalizing cannabis industry can be a bit of a mindfuck.

“Who, exactly, is this for?” I often find myself wondering, especially as a person who finds herself at the intersection of a few seemingly high-priority target groups for cannabis marketers: I’m a woman who, at 36-years-old, is approaching middle age. I have a diagnosed anxiety disorder, as well as ADHD. I also stopped drinking heavily over two years ago, swapping in more weed for less booze. According to the panels I’ve moderated and sat in on, the people I’ve interviewed, and the trend reports I’ve read, those are all prime targets for cannabis companies, especially the middle-aged woman bit. But the truth is that I’ve always smoked weed and the only thing I care about when buying it is whether it’s good or not, not the package it came in nor the lifestyle it promises, however cute it all may be.

Interestingly, though, the one aspect of my life that should seem attractive to cannabis marketers—the fact that I’m what my primary care physician calls a “heavy cannabis user”—seems to be not particularly sought after by brands or the people who market them. On its face, that seems kind of obvious, because why should anyone build something for a population that’s already arrived when growth at all costs is the target goal? But it seems a bit disrespectful that branding and marketing efforts in cannabis increasingly ignores its core customer, instead peacocking for an imaginary would-be toker who is, honestly, probably never going to purchase more than a bag of low-dose edibles every few months or so.

Adding insult to injury, cannabis is not just another consumer-packaged good. It’s a criminalized controlled substance, the prohibition of which has gotten many people killed and imprisoned, a legacy that continues to this day. It may seem quaint in the age of dispensaries that look like Apple stores or high-end boutiques, but not too long ago, it wasn’t actually normal or even safe to buy or sell weed! Those of us who did so, whether we were trying to or not, were engaging in an act of resistance to some extent. We were at risk. To me, I think that means we get to have our weed brands be as weedy and stonery as we like. Bring on the tie-dye, the Grateful Dead kitsch, the wide array of dabs. We fought for this and we deserve to enjoy it.

Instead, I find myself scanning display cases at dispensaries, often not even able to see or smell the weed inside the pretty packages and utterly unsure of what I’m even purchasing. I read glowing profiles of cannabis executives, many of whom are quoted saying something along the lines of, “our weed brand transcends the stoner stereotype and image.”

Cool, I guess, but what does that even mean? So many types of people smoke weed, and on paper and at first glance, I’m probably not what most people would picture when they hear “stoner,” yet here I am. Plus, I’m not actually ashamed to be a pothead, especially when considering how much cannabis has enhanced my life and helped me heal from a variety of maladies. My consumption isn’t the issue, it’s the rest of society’s view of it that’s actually the problem.

That being said, there are certain aspects of the culture that I am glad are starting to change, like different types of consumption being celebrated more and more. The fact that lower- and mid-range-THC products are being shouted for alongside a greater focus on terpenes is music to my ears. And while there is still a very long way to go, I do appreciate that the serious bro culture of the cannabis world is starting to dissipate, however slowly. I look around at consumption lounges, parties, industry events, dispensaries, board rooms, and cannabis media companies, and more and more women are present than ever before. To me, that’s more meaningful than a pretty pre-roll with “feminine” design attributes.

To that point, I was recently on a panel with cannabis attorney Heidi Urness, who also agreed with me that cannabis brands need to stop focusing on this fake customer they want so badly to appear out of thin air. “You might make a product that appeals to a customer you didn’t intend for it to appeal to,” she said. “That’s your customer now! Serve them!” I couldn’t agree more.

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How Magic Mushrooms Can Help You Lose Weight

The struggle is real, guys! Somewhere along the way, getting rid of a few extra pounds turned into fending off diabetes, worrying about heart problems, and giving up on fitting into anything within 10 sizes. The obesity issue has ballooned out (all pun intended), and the collective health of America has been hit in the jugular. Products that promise to help often fall short, and the ability to keep weight off becomes harder and harder to do. Perhaps it won’t be the cure-all that people hope for when something new comes out, but it’s possible that magic mushrooms are a new answer to the growing issue of how to lose weight.

If magic mushrooms can help humans lose weight, it will sure shake up the weight loss industry. We’ll find out soon enough how useful these fungi are for keeping the pounds off. This publication reports on the cannabis and psychedelics industries of today, which you can follow along with by subscribing to The Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter. This will put you in first place for all new psychedelic product promotions as they come out, though you can already take advantage of deals for cannabinoids, like HHC-O, Delta 8Delta 9 THCDelta-10 THCTHCOTHCVTHCP HHC.


Can magic mushrooms help a person lose weight?

Let’s jump right in, shall we? There isn’t a large body of research on mushrooms in general (though it’s certainly growing), and the majority is geared toward mental health issues. This first look into mushrooms as a measure to lose weight is a new concept, and the research on it is sparse. Here is what there is to know.

In 2018, researchers put out this review called Anti-Obesity Effects of Medicinal and Edible Mushrooms, in which they investigated research done into the “cellular mechanisms of obesity that attenuate by antioxidant potentials of medicinal and edible mushrooms.” The idea being that “studies have showed that mushrooms potentially have antioxidant capacities, which increase the antioxidant defense systems in cells.” And that “they boost anti-inflammatory actions and thereby protect against obesity-related hypertension and dyslipidemia.”

It was pointed out within the review that mushrooms “produce low energy which is favorable for weight loss; they contain low glucose, and high mannitol, that is exactly appropriate for diabetics; and have no cholesterol and low sodium, which is good for people suffering from hypertension.”

The authors cite previous research that states “mushrooms help to regulate dysbiosis and augment antiobesity effects.” And that “modulating microbiota with the consumption of mushroom could also help maintain glucose homeostasis and reduce insulin resistance linked to diabetes and obesity.”

They concluded, “mushrooms are highly nutritive species containing enormous amounts of bioactive compounds (polysaccharides, fibers, terpenes, polyphenols, sterols, flavonoids, and alkaloids) that are potentially antioxidant-rich constituents with effects on numerous cardiac biomarkers to treat obesity-related cardiovascular system illnesses.

Various animal studies have demonstrated that regular consumption of mushrooms significantly reduces hypertension, atherosclerosis, dyslipidemia, inflammation, and obesity. Nevertheless, this practice ought to be combined with regular physical exercise, as well as dietary and lifestyle alterations. The practice of regular consumption of mushroom might however result in synergistic and improved effects.”

Preclinical trials

Before testing on people is done, there is often experimentation done on animals. As such, whether a person agrees with this idea or not, a lot is often gained from animal research. In this case lab rats were used in trials relating to the use of psilocybin for appetite control, ran by a company called NeonMind.

For the trials, the rats were fed a very high calorie diet of Nutella. Some rats received small doses of psilocybin, some received bigger doses, and some were part of a control group that did not receive psilocybin at all. The results showed that rats fed more psilocybin were less likely to eat as much, with a thought being that the psilocybin might suppress appetite.

This offers two possible benefits. One is the possible ability to suppress the appetite leading to less desire for food. And the other is the ability to change patterned thinking, allowing for new thought processes to be made, which can help a person get out of their old eating habits, and establish new, healthier ones. This ability for neuroplasticity is seen with other hallucinogens as well.

Overall, investigators concluded a few things. First, that there was statistical significance in terms of weight gain between the control group and the experimental groups. Second, that results were seen within a few days. Third, that the experimental groups did consume less food than the control. And four, there weren’t any safety issues with using psilocybin. Next up come clinical trials for humans.

NeonMind wants to use mushrooms to lose weight

Magic mushrooms aren’t legal yet, but there is already a whole industry sprouting up around them. Many companies are currently selling non-psychedelic mushrooms in an effort to get things going while waiting for new regulation. And some companies are already planning for impending legal changes. NeonMind is a company out of Canada which is behind the trials mentioned above.

NeonMind Biosciences is a publicly traded biotech company that is currently examining how magic mushrooms, and specifically psilocybin, can help a person lose weight by helping to improve eating habits, and change patterned thinking about food. The company functions on two main pathways, 1) as a pharmaceutical company developing psychedelic drugs targeting obesity, and 2) providing medical services through specialty mental health clinics.

lose weight

Says CEO of NeonMind Penny White, “psilocybin causes neuroplasticity, which means it can remove our Pavlovian-like responses to environmental stimuli”, and that “psilocybin has the potential to serve as a new and different tool to help people lose weight and maintain their weight loss by changing neural pathways.” She explained, “changed habits and cognitions can increase caloric expenditure and reset the behaviors and cognitions that link life stress and trauma to eating behavior.”

In terms of clinical trials, White stated, “psilocybin is known to activate serotonin receptors. Serotonin can curb cravings, shut off appetite and reduce eating.” She explained the initial trials, saying, “we are currently conducting a preclinical trial at the University of British Columbia examining psilocybin as a treatment for weight loss. We are also designing a phase 2 human clinical trial which we hope will be application ready by the spring.”

This came from an interview in early 2021, and the Phase I trials were released in 2022. The preclinical trials were done with the backing of Health Canada. NeonMind has since then filed five US provisional patent applications for weight loss therapeutics, including for compulsive eating disorders; obesity or related issues; and for altering diets for better health.

The company completed its IPO in late 2020, raising $4.6 million. The stock is traded under NEON on the Canadian Securities Exchange. This makes them one of the growing number of psychedelics companies that are now publicly traded.

NeonMind isn’t the only organization looking into magic mushrooms for weight-related issues. The company COMPASS Pathways (Nasdaq – CMPS) is investigating treating anorexia-nervosa with psilocybin in Phase II trials, and the company Tryp Therapeutics (CSE – TRYP) (OTCQB – TRYPF) is recruiting for Phase II trials to treat binge eating with its own version of psilocybin.

The overweight epidemic

How big is the overweight issue in America, and how much do we need to pay attention? Oh, it’s pretty bad. First let’s define things. There’s a difference between the terms ‘overweight’ and ‘obese’. Whereas ‘overweight’ implies a body mass index (BMI) of over 25%, ‘obese’ refers to those who are 30% above the weight they should be. BMI is a measure of a person’s weight (measured in kg), divided by their height (in m2). It’s written like this: mg/kg. Standard BMI’s are about 18.5-24.9%.

In terms of how this problem can be explained for a population, consider that as of a CDC reporting for 2017-2018, 42.4% of the US population weighed in as obese. Not overweight, remember, but obese, meaning this entire 42.4% of the population has a BMI of 30% or more.

This qualifies nearly half the population as being incredibly overweight. Considering the requirement to be called overweight is several percentages less, it implies that over half the population could be considered heavier than what is healthy.

magic mushrooms lose weight

This hasn’t always been a problem, and there’s been a steady increase in the last couple decades. Between 1999-2018, the rate of obesity shot up 30.5% signaling major issues in the food we eat, and the sedentary way we live our lives. Within that period, the incidence of severe obesity (BMI of 40%+) also went up to 9.2% from 4.7%.

I’ll make this even worse. It’s not just the adults it affects, but the children of the country too. From 1975 to 2016, the rate of obesity among children aged 5-19 shot up from 4% to 18%, according to the WHO’s global burden of disease statistics from 2017. This means not only are we not able to control ourselves in terms of what we eat, but we can’t helpfully impact children with healthy eating habits, either.

Conclusion

Though magic mushrooms propose an interesting solution to the problem, possibly offering users a way to lose weight, the entire idea of using them comes with a major stipulation. Just like with tons of other medications, and supplements, how well they work, is often determined by how much effort we’re willing to put in.

Magic mushrooms might prove to be a good aid to lose weight, but it probably won’t be accomplished without changing eating and exercise habits. This might not be the super easy answer hoped for by a country with out-of-control weight issues, but it might be the only one in reality for those who want lasting results.

Hello all! Thanks for dropping by CBDtesters.co / Cannadelics.com, the #1 web platform for fully-rounded independent news of the burgeoning cannabis and psychedelics fields. Stop by whenever possible for a daily dose of industry news, and check out The Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter, for updates on everything important going on.

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New York Regulators Approve Marketing Rules for Legal Cannabis

New York state regulators voted on Wednesday to approve draft rules for the packaging and marketing of legal cannabis products. The proposed regulations establish parameters for the sale of recreational weed products, which are expected to go on sale by the end of the year following the legalization of adult-use cannabis by state lawmakers in 2021.

Under the draft regulations from the New York Cannabis Control Board, companies will be permitted to advertise their products via television, radio, social media and other platforms. But the rules also include strict provisions designed to protect children from being influenced by cannabis marketing.

“Protecting public health, reducing harm and promoting sustainable industry practices are key components of legalizing cannabis for adult use and I look forward to considering these regulations as we develop the industry,” Cannabis Control Board Chair Tremaine Wright said in a statement quoted by the New York Post. “We are committed to building a New York cannabis industry that sets high standards for protecting children and keeping products safe and sustainable.”

Rules Designed To Protect Kids

Labels for cannabis products must include the serving size, potency, ingredients, and directions for usage and storage. Packaging and advertising that contain cartoon characters, bubble lettering, neon colors, references to candy, or other elements likely to appeal to people younger than 21 years old are not allowed.

The regulations also forbid the use of endorsements from celebrities who appear to be younger than 21 and ban the use of common terms in the cannabis culture lexicon including “weed,” “pot,” “stoner,” and “chronic.” Misleading claims of health benefits and indications that the product is “safe” or “organic” are also prohibited, as are actual images of marijuana or people vaping or smoking.

Katrina Yolen, chief marketing officer of multistate cannabis operator Acreage Holdings, applauded New York regulators for updating the guidelines for cannabis marketing and advertising in advance of the launch of adult-use sales.

“Recognizing that cannabis operators need to be able to communicate better with consumers to educate, inform and build awareness about the benefits of cannabis is vital for the state and industry,” Yolen wrote in an email. “We look forward to supporting and working with the Office of Cannabis Management on the final guidelines over the coming weeks.”

All cannabis product packaging must include the state symbol of approval that includes the universal cannabis symbol with a cannabis leaf and the letters “THC,” plus an indication that the product is for consumers 21 and up and the New York state logo. The stipulated label is reserved for products that have been produced by licensed cannabis companies and lab tested for safety in accordance with state law.

Packaging for cannabis products must also be child-resistant, meeting standards that make the product difficult for a child younger than 5 to open. Additionally, the regulations require that cannabis advertising be no closer than 500 feet to schools, libraries, daycare centers, and playgrounds.

The draft regulations also call for a rotating series of warning labels to be placed on packaging for cannabis requirements, such as “Cannabis can impair concentration, coordination and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of cannabis” and “Keep out of reach of children and pets.” 

Marketing Rules Set a High Bar in New York

The regulations forbid marketing and promotional tactics commonly used by companies in other industries. Price promotions, coupons, customer loyalty programs, and other discounts are not allowed under the rules.

In an email to High Times, Katelin Edwards, senior regulatory analyst at Simplifya, a regulatory and operational compliance software platform serving the cannabis industry, said that a particular aspect of New York’s regulations may prove to be especially burdensome for weed businesses.

“Although it is true that a NY cannabis licensee can advertise cannabis products, cannabis paraphernalia, or goods or services related to cannabis or cannabis products by means of television, radio, print, internet, mobile applications, social media and other electronic communication,” said Edwards, “the licensee has to have reliable evidence that at least 90%, unless otherwise determined by the Office, of the audience for the advertisement is reasonably expected to be twenty-one years of age or older.”

Edwards notes that the composition requirement is more stringent than most states that have legalized recreational pot, including Colorado, California, and New Jersey, where audience composition requirements that call for about 70% of the audience to be 21 and older are the norm.

“Getting reliable and up-to-date audience composition data to prove that at least 90% of the audience is reasonably expected to be 21 years of age or older may be challenging; especially when ‘reasonably expected’ is so ambiguous and the burden of proof is on the licensee.”

The new proposed regulations will now undergo a 60-day public comment period beginning on June 15 before coming up for a final vote by the board.

The post New York Regulators Approve Marketing Rules for Legal Cannabis appeared first on High Times.

What Hemp Products Do People Search for Most?

Without a uniform federal system, it can often be difficult to get hard numbers to paint an actual portrayal of data in the cannabinoids industry, particularly related to sales. Different publications produce their own numbers based on different metrics, but there are holes where a lot of data should be. One metric of late comes from kush.com, and seeks to answer the question of what hemp products its consumers search for most.

What hemp products do people search for most? Well, we have no formal answer to that, but kush.com pulled together some data from its site to show us what its customers are searching for. Is it helpful? You be the judge! We cover everything under the sun in the world of weed, and you can follow along by signing up to the THC Weekly Newsletter, for a daily dose of industry news. Plus, get direct access to deals on products like vapes, edibles, and other paraphernalia, and on cannabinoid compounds, as well. Check out our 420 deals to get the most out of April 20th, and to ensure a blissful and sky-high holiday!


What is kush.com

Before getting into what information was released, best to have an idea of who released it. The company kush.com specializes in supply chain solutions that alleviate risk and compliance issues for all transactions. According to the company, over 6,000 professionals currently use its service. “Kush builds bridges between producers, processors and retailers with a carefully curated network of verified and vetted buyers and sellers.”

Aside from that, kush.com’s main purpose is as a standard marketplace, which sells CBD products, ‘hemp-derived’ products, and other cannabis products. Kush.com goes by the standard industry line in terms of its products’ legality. It says that all products are federally compliant by being hemp-derived and having less than .3% THC. However, as we’ve gone over in many posts, none of these products are made without synthetization, meaning they are illegal, as has been backed up by the DEA.

Shopify already banned such products a couple months ago, likely at the behest of the US government, in an effort to curb an industry it otherwise has no control over. While kush.com doesn’t seem to be pulling shadier tactics, like using brand names of other companies to sell products, or putting dispensary logos on products, it is wholly part of what is already a questionable industry.

As such, all information coming from them should be taken with a grain of salt. However, even salty information is sometimes best if nothing else exists. The following is kush.com’s breakdown of what hemp products people search for most on its site. Maybe it’s not the information we technically want the most, but its the crumb that’s been dropped down to us for now.

What did kush.com do?

According to kush.com, it collected sales data from thousands of customers to see what they’re searching for, which included 200,000 search results. The searches come from the last few months, with nothing more said about time frames. All searches are the result of people looking for products directly on the company site, and the results do not include standard Google searches. Therefore, this metric is only related to kush.com directly.

This is also not sales data, just to be clear. None of what’s to follow indicates a direct sale, so if sales were put up against searches, it could show some very different information. These are only search results, and though they may show interest in a product, they are not indicative of company revenue.

Last thing to know is that kush.com was specifically looking at searches for different Hemp Finished Goods. ‘Hemp Finished Goods’ relates to products that come from hemp, and in this case, can mean all products from vapes to oils to edibles to lotions, and so on.

What hemp products do people search for most?

Kush.com’s search results show that the most searched for hemp products are vapes, with 28.7% of searches relating to these items. Second up was edible candy, which accounted for 18.1% of searches. Dabs and concentrates took the third spot for most searched-for hemp items, with 13.1% of searches, and packaged flowers found themselves in fourth place with 10.6% of searches pointed in that direction.

The rest of the search results go as follows: 9.8% for pre-rolls, 5.2% for tinctures, 4.6% for drinks, 3.3% for lotions, 3% for edibles, 2.3% for capsules and tablets, .8% for pet treats, and .6% for bath bombs. It should be noticed that many of the categories overlap. For example, edibles got 3%, but drinks got 4.6% and candy got 18.1%, which equal 22.7% together. Or you can put together flowers and pre-rolls for 20.4% of search results.

hemp products

Vapes, edibles (particularly candy), and flowers were the most searched for finished hemp products on kush.com’s site. If nothing else, vendors on kush.com can use this to determine the best way to list products. After all, if selling infused chocolates, it looks like more people will search under ‘candy’ than ‘edibles’, making it easier to get to consumers by listing the product as ‘candy’.

It bears repeating, this has nothing to do with sales information, and though the data could be similar, searches don’t predict sales. It could be that kush.com had its highest sales in flowers, not in vapes. Or that only 1% of clients went on to buy a tincture, though over 5% of search results indicate interest. If kush.com had released accompanying sales data, we’d be able to more closely investigate how close these aggregated searches are to final sales data, but for now, this is the most we’ve been given.

Of course, that’s also one of the bigger questions of this hemp-derived industry in general. Just how big are sales? The cannabinoid market is a very controversial one, but its also a very below-board one, which means not many companies are willing to release their data. Or I assume that’s why it’s been so problematic finding data.

For whatever the reason is, answering the simple question of how much money do these companies bring in, has been a black hole, with infographics like this offering the most anyone wants to give. Did we really learn a lot here? Not really. Apart from vendors possibly getting insight on how to list products, we aren’t increasing out knowledge base with anything interesting.

Other questions it raises

Apart from how this relates to sales data, there is also the question of what particular goods were searched for. Like, in the category of vapes, what percentage of the searches were for delta-8 products, how many were for CBD, and how many for HHC? It could be that one of these categories clearly dominates, or that they rather evenly share the field. It would be very useful to know what products in each category are searched for most.

The same goes for a category like ‘candy’. Gummies have grown in interest all over, but how do they compare to chocolate bars? And are other baked goods in this category, or in another? Then there is the question of whether kush.com counted searches in multiple categories. For example, if a person searched for infused sodas, would it count in just ‘drinks’, or in ‘drinks’ and in ‘edibles’? Same question for gummies, and pet treats that are also edibles. And it can be applied to flowers and pre-rolls, as well.

cannabis statistics

I’m also curious, when looking at this kind of data, of how many searches each searcher did. It could be that the majority are just people going through the site, with each searcher checking out tons of different categories before making a purchase, or leaving without purchasing. How many categories did the average searcher check out? If its 10, then this data wouldn’t relate well to sales figures, but if its one or two, it indicates that searchers were more specific in what they were looking for, and probably more likely to buy.

Conclusion

How useful an infographic like this is, is hard to say. Sure, it provides a tiny peak at some information, but if you’re like me, and you want more expressive information on the field, something like this not only falls short, but appears to be more a marketing scheme to get traffic, then an actual scientific output meant to add to the understanding of the overall market. I’m not terribly impressed in the end. I’d be more impressed with real sales data, something that’s never released in this industry.

Whether that’s because these companies don’t want the federal government knowing their true sales information, or a lack of result to meet the built-up facade of sales, I have no idea. But they should be out there, and they’re not, and this offering is a paltry substitute, for real and useful information.

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Shopify is Banning All THC Products From Being Sold on Their Platform

The once go-to industry payment processor, Shopify, is now banning the sale of all products containing more than 0.3% THC through their platform. That includes alternative cannabinoids like Delta 8 and 10, THC-O, THCP, and so on.  

According to a Shopify email that’s making the rounds, products containing more than 0.3% of any type of tetrahydrocannabinol (0.2% if you’re shipping globally) will be removed from account holders’ online stores. This is in order to comply with FDA regulations.  

Word for word, the email sent yesterday to numerous distributors states: “It has come to our attention that you are using your Shopify account to sell Delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) products containing more than 0.3% THC. Unfortunately, due to applicable laws and regulations in the United States, Shopify’s policies do not currently permit merchants to offer for sale products containing more than 0.3% THC regardless of compound type (e.g., delta-8, delta-9, delta-10).” 

Cannabis regulations are incredibly complicated and constantly changing, but we’ll continue doing our best to keep you updated every step of the way. Remember to subscribe to The THC Weekly Newsletter all the latest news and industry stories, as well as exclusive deals on flowers, vapes, edibles, and other products. Also save big on Delta 8Delta 9 THCDelta-10 THCTHCOTHCVTHCP & even HHC / HHC-O products by checking out our “Best-of” lists!


A bit more about THCs 

To quickly summarize, there are about 15 different known tetrahydrocannabinol compounds, some are natural from the plant and some are synthetics. The main ones you’ll see in today’s market are delta 8, 9, and 10, THCV, THC-P, and THC-O. When people think of “THC”, Delta 9 is what they’re thinking of. Delta 9 THC is the main psychoactive compound in the cannabis plant. For decades, Delta 9 has been at the heart of prohibition efforts because lawmakers were too intently focused on its mind-altering properties while completely dismissing all of its many possible uses in the health and wellness sectors.  

As delta 9 ages, a significant portion oxidizes and “degrades”. Most of it turns into CBN (cannabinol), while a small amount turns into Delta 8 THC and possibly, other trace cannabinoids and compounds. As a result of this chemical process, Delta 8 THC remains stable when exposed to air, meaning it could have more potential medical applications than delta 9, although Delta 8 is somewhat less potent. In cannabis plants, delta 8 is only present in trace amounts, so in most of the products you find online or in stores, the delta-8 THC is actually a synthetic converted from CBD, not a plant-extracted compound.   

Then we have delta-10 THC. D10 is a completely synthetic cannabinoid that was discovered on accident. As with many of the nation’s Cannadelics trends, delta-10 THC started in California. An Adelanto-based company, Fusion Farms, bought some outdoor flower to manufacture concentrates. As many already know, California is subject to very large, nearly annual wildfires; and unbeknownst to Fusion Farms, the biomass they purchased was contaminated with fire retardant. Since they were unaware of the contamination, they continued with the extraction as planned but after the distillation process, unusual crystals began to form. These crystals were similar to THC, slightly different from any previously identified cannabinoid. And thus, it was dubbed delta-10 THC.   

THCV, or tetrahydrocannabivarin, THCV is a naturally occurring analog of THC. THCV comes from the precursor cannabinoid CBGVA, which breaks down to into THCVA (tetrahydrocannabivarin acid), which then is decarboxylated to form THCV. What’s interesting about THCV is the way that it interacts with our endocannabinoid system, and the subsequent effects it has on appetite and weight.   

THCP (tetrahydrocannabiphorol), on the other hand, is a special type of THC analog called a homolog. A homolog is a molecule belonging to a series of compounds that differ from each other by a repeating unit. In this scenario, the repeating unit is the alkyl side chain. Delta 9 THC has a 5-term alkyl side chain, which means that it contains 5 total carbon atoms. THCP has an elongated 7-term chain.  

And finally, let’s take a look at THC-O-Acetate, which is referred to as an acetate ester of delta-9 THC. Let’s cover what exactly that means. We know that delta-9 THC is created as a result of the decarboxylation of THCA, but there are different ways that decarboxylation can occur. An acetate ester is a byproduct of a certain type of decarboxylation called LTA decarboxylation, a process that is very different from the standard method of heat/light induced decarboxylation.   

Free Delta 9 THC Gummies

What does the DEA and FDA say about THC? 

First and foremost, all THCs are still technically considered Schedule 1 one narcotics, as per the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). So naturally, this factors into Shopify’s decision. For reference, Schedule 1 narcotics are said to have the highest potential for abuse and addiction, and thus, are under the strictest regulations. That said, natural drugs that we in the industry know to be safe, like cannabis, mushrooms, and peyote, are listed under schedule 1, whereas substances like methamphetamine and heroin are a bit less stigmatized with a schedule 2 category. It really makes no sense, but that’s the way it is.  

Additionally, on Shopify’s page of resources for companies selling “hemp and hemp-derived products”, there is a link to the Federal Drug Enforcement Agency’s (FDA) statement governing the sale of these items. As per their website, “Even if a CBD product meets the definition of ‘hemp’ under the 2018 Farm Bill, it still must comply with all other applicable laws, including the FD&C Act. Furthermore, the FDA has concluded that THC and CBD products are excluded from the dietary supplement definition under section 201(ff)(3)(B) of the FD&C Act [21 U.S.C. § 321(ff)(3)(B)].” 

So basically, they’re heavily regulated, product containing these compounds cannot even be legally sold as dietary supplements anymore, and Shopify simply does not want to deal with the drama, as is never-ending cycle of cannabis industry payment processing woes in the US. 

More on global regulations – Europe and Canada

In other parts of the world, namely Europe until a very recent ruling, hemp was defined as having less than 0.2% THC, rather than 0.3% like in the US. The change is insignificant in terms of product quality and safety, but it’s a major pain for farmers and manufacturers.  

Under Shopify’s section on “Laws and regulations for selling hemp or hemp-derived products internationally”, it states that, “You can sell hemp or hemp-derived products if it’s legal, and you comply with all marketing laws in your jurisdiction and the jurisdiction of your customers. The products you sell can’t contain more than 0.2% of THC, regardless of the compound type, such as delta-8, delta-9, and delta-10.”

Now Canada. Because cannabis is legal at the federal level in Canada, the regulations for payments and banking are a bit different there. Here is what Shopify has to say about companies selling cannabis products in Canada: 

canada

“In Canada, most hemp-derived products are classified as cannabis. To sell hemp or hemp-derived products in Canada, you must: Be licensed to sell cannabis either at the federal or provincial level, comply with all the requirements set out in the relevant legislation, use Shopify Plus, complete a specific onboarding process related to selling cannabis products in Canada.”  

Shopify Banning THC – Final thoughts

Although highly inconvenient, because companies are scrambling to set up new online shops and find payment processing solutions, if there is one thing to be said about the cannabis industry is that we are adaptive. As of now, it appears that WordPress/WooCommerce will be the next big thing for industry internet retail, so keep an eye out as things continue to unfold.

Product Reviewers Wanted

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Disclaimer: Hi, I’m a researcher and writer. I’m not a doctor, lawyer, or businessperson. All information in my articles is sourced and referenced, and all opinions stated are mine. I am not giving anyone advice, and though I am more than happy to discuss topics, should someone have a further question or concern, they should seek guidance from a relevant professional.

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Are Women Less Likely To Support Cannabis Legalization Than Men?

When it comes to the majority of political issues – including support for social services and government spending, environmental regulation, equal rights, prison reform, mental health, and so on – women tend to lean more liberal than men. One of the few hot-button topics where more women seem to skew conservatively, is cannabis legalization, surprisingly.  

According to a Gallup survey conducted late last year, American support for cannabis legalization is at an all-time high of nearly 70 percent. However, despite the fact that a growing number of adults are in favor of weed reform, it seems that women are somewhat less open to the idea than men. A few other studies and surveys over the year shared similar findings.  

So, what is the reason for this gender gap? Is it related to religion, politics, or parenthood? Or is because, historically, women have always faced greater stigma than men for engaging in what society considers “deviant” behavior? Is it a combination of all these different elements? Let’s explore this further. 

As with most things in this world, cannabis use is not uniform across the board. Opinions vary based on age, religious beliefs, gender, and many other factors. But as a whole, it seems that most people are becoming increasingly supportive of reform efforts, and we’re here to keep you updated on these changes every step of the way. Subscribe to THC Weekly Newsletter for tons more stories like this one. Plus, gain access to exclusive deals on flowers, vapes, edibles, and much more, along with premiere offers on cannabinoids, like HHC-O, Delta 8Delta 9 THCDelta-10 THCTHCOTHCVTHCP HHC, which will save you lots of $$. You can find them in our “Best-of” lists!


The cannabis gender gap 

Using data from Pew Research Center surveys, researchers from North Carolina State University and Hartwick College conducted a new meta-analysis of their results and tested several different hypotheses to try and see if they could figure out more about this gender gap. They published their results in the Social Science Quarterly.  Although the numbers vary slightly based on the specific survey conducted, on average, just under 70 percent of men support cannabis legalization, while only about 60 percent of women do. The numbers run parallel to gendered patterns of recreational use, in which similar figures have been reported.  

Overall, it seems that among adolescents, males are more likely to use cannabis than females, and that continues into adulthood. These numbers remained constant whether cannabis was legal in the respondents’ areas or not. Additionally, among those who did use cannabis, there were gender-based differences in the way it was being used. Women were more likely to use it therapeutically, and the most common conditions listed were nausea, anxiety, and migraines.  

This makes a lot of sense, when we consider how standard medications are prescribed to women versus men. Statistics show that women are more likely than men to use antidepressants, anti-anxiety, and anti-pain medications, although rates of diagnosis between both genders are practically the same. Women also typically seek medical treatment earlier and more frequently than men, and about 14 percent more women reported taking vitamins and supplements than their male counterparts.  

All-that said, it’s no surprise that among women, especially middle-aged to older women, the idea of using cannabis medicinally is a much easier-to-swallow pill than full-scale recreational legalization. Even so, the gender gap has certainly narrowed over the years and will likely continue to do so. In 2018, 68 percent of men supported cannabis legalization, while only 56 percent of women did. By late last year, these numbers were at 68-61. What’s interesting is that the number of men who support cannabis reform is now remaining stagnant, and the number of women who are flipping the switch is growing.  

The conservative mother theory  

A common assumption when it comes to women and cannabis, is that mothers are more inclined to oppose cannabis legalization efforts. This is, though, just an assumption that’s not rooted in fact whatsoever. It’s true that parenthood is political, and parents tend to support policies that help children and prevent crime. From this perspective it makes sense that mothers who are intent on protecting their children would oppose policies that are lenient toward any type of substance use, not just cannabis.  

Fascinatingly, that appears to not be the case at all. When this theory was tested, it was noted that mothers and fathers were just as likely to support cannabis legalization as men and women without children. When it came to harder drugs with more addictive tendencies, that’s where many began to draw the line, but views on cannabis were fairly liberal.  

“Being a parent is not a predictor of attitudes on the marijuana support scale,” says Steven Greene, Professor of political science at North Carolina State University, and co-author of the study. “When the demographics-only model is run without the parenthood variable (not shown) and then with the parenthood variable added, the coefficient for gender does not change at all, indicating that being a parent does not account for any of the gender gap.” 

The real cause of the divide  

Numerous different tests were conducted to see if there was a “why” that could be explained. The first analysis looked at gender alone, to establish a baseline, then added different demographic variables to see which ones had the largest impact on cannabis-related opinions. They examined political party affiliation, age, education level, income, race, parenthood, marital status, religious affiliation/commitment, and past use patterns.  

Political party affiliation, age, education, and church attendance were all somewhat significant, with results implying that younger, liberal, higher-educated, and non-religious women were more likely to be in favor of cannabis legalization. Older and conservative women were more inclined to be opposed altogether or more prefered medical legalization only. Race, marital status, and parenthood all proved largely insignificant in all these analyses.  

But all the aforementioned factors were no longer noteworthy when past cannabis use was accounted for. According to the study authors, “Personal use had the strongest influence of all the variables considered, indicating that those who had ever used were more likely to support legalization than those who had never used marijuana, even when considering all the other factors.” 

Familiarity and comfortability  

So, if past use and familiarity are the common denominators in whether someone is more likely to support cannabis legalization or not, the next question is… why are men more often more comfortable with cannabis than women? When we think of stoners, we tend to think of carefree young males, and we’re not entirely off base with that association.  

Statistically speaking, women were less likely to report having ever trying cannabis at all. Approximately 55 percent of men reported having tried cannabis at some point in their lives, compared to only 42 percent of women. Women also reported feeling “uncomfortable” around the plant and in regards to the industry in general.  

Considering how beneficial cannabis can be for women, I personally find these results jarring. Why aren’t more women at least trying it? It’s honestly hard to say, because in my own experience, most of the women I’ve met are cannabis-friendly. Aside from personal preferences, it could stem from historical double standards. Typically, women who engage in risky behavior are judged more harshly than men who engage in similar or even riskier activities. This includes but is not limited to drug use and sexual activity, the two of which are often believed to go hand in hand. 

And in that same vein, women have been (and still are to some extent) restricted in how and when they can express their sexuality. Because the general consensus is that drugs lower inhibitions, and lowered inhibitions can lead to more satisfying sexual experiences, and women have been sexually oppressed since the earliest documented human civilizations, it’s no surprise that women face more stigma for using mind altering substances as well.  

Final thoughts  

It’s important to note that this gender gap, although present, is not very large and getting smaller with each passing day. Researchers believe that this will be a non-issue as soon as a few years down the line.  

“Though it is challenging to accurately predict the future contours of the gender gap in marijuana, we do think our findings here are instructive,” the team wrote. “As marijuana use becomes more common and seen as less risky or deviant behavior, and as marijuana use is framed less as a moral issue (which will presumably be the case as it grows more common and legalized), there is reason to expect the gender gap to shrink.” 

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Disclaimer: Hi, I’m a researcher and writer. I’m not a doctor, lawyer, or businessperson. All information in my articles is sourced and referenced, and all opinions stated are mine. I am not giving anyone advice, and though I am more than happy to discuss topics, should someone have a further question or concern, they should seek guidance from a relevant professional.

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Digital Money and Digital Weed? How Crypto and NFTs are Reshaping the Cannabis Industry

As mainstream, profitable, and technologically advanced as the cannabis industry has become in recent years, the struggle to access financial services is still one of the prevailing issues faced by business owners. It seems as though congress won’t provide any solutions on this front until they’re forced to do so via a federal legalization. But being the adaptive industry that cannabis is, crypto and NTFs are proving to be interesting legal alternatives to operating in all-cash.  

The cannabis industry is complicated enough as it is, add to the mix trying to figure out financing solutions, and it’s enough to make you almost want to give up. Luckily, cryptocurrency and NFTs are offering unique alternatives to what once seemed like a dead-end road. Remember to subscribe to The THC Weekly Newsletter for more articles like this one and exclusive deals on flowers, vapes, edibles, and more! Also save big on HHC-O, Delta 8Delta 9 THCDelta-10 THCTHCOTHCVTHCP HHC products by checking out our “Best-of” lists!


Without banking access, cannabis businesses are turning to crypto  

It’s relatively common knowledge that banking is a big problem in the cannabis industry. Because marijuana is still federally illegal and dealing with cannabis cash could be considered money laundering, banks are naturally reluctant about working with the industry. That means everything including loans, lines of credit, payment processing solutions, and even basic bank accounts are off limits for canna-business owners.  

A bill titled the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act, which passed the House of Representatives last year with strong bipartisan support, would have allowed banks and financial institutions to service the cannabis industry. Unfortunately, the bill hasn’t seen much action since the beginning of 2020.  

The lack of access to financial support has forced many cannabis businesses to deal in all-cash, which is not only inconvenient, but also dangerous. Thieves are aware that dispensaries have both, a lot of cash and weed on hand, and these businesses are targeted and robbed regularly. When this happens, it can be hard to file insurance claims for stolen cash and other products when the amount stolen can’t be proven.  

Additionally, everything from paying rent to managing payroll becomes highly convoluted when you’re dealing with cash, and cryptocurrency can help resolve some of these issues. Cryptocurrency is decentralized digital money that’s stored on a blockchain technology system. Because crypto transactions aren’t regulated in the same way as standard banking exchanges, and the fact that it’s impossible to physically steal cryptocurrency and difficult to hack blockchain wallets as well, it makes sense that a growing number of companies are showing interest.   

Cryptocurrency can benefit cannabis businesses in the following ways:  

  • Cash-free transactions: The ability to accept Bitcoin and other digital currencies in lieu of cash payments is a major benefit for cannabis businesses trying to move away from having large sums of money on hand or in their stores, homes, etc.  
  • Lower fees: Regarding the very few financial service companies that are actually willing to work with cannabis, they charge astronomical fees for being some of the only players in the game. Using crypto payments allows cannabis business owners – who are already paying ridiculous amounts of money in taxes, rent, and pretty much everything else – to at least save some money on payment processing fees.  
  • International transactions: For businesses that also sell merchandise, CBD products, and other items that can be shipped internationally, digital currency offers a quick and efficient way to accomplish this.  

Downsides to crypto 

As with everything, there are some downsides to using cryptocurrency in the cannabis industry. For example, crypto is taxed differently than income received through standard business transactions like with credit and debit cards. This is in part because cryptocurrency is a somewhat new concept that still is not being heavily utilized by the general population, but also, because of the volatility of digital currency. 

This can make it very costly and time consuming to manage transaction records because, not only does the business owner need to keep track of every single transaction conducted, but they will also need to make note of the value of cryptocurrency against their local currency at the time of the transaction. This is something that is both time consuming when done correctly, and extremely difficult to go backwards and track if you weren’t doing so at the time the transaction was conducted.  

In addition to being an accounting nightmare, another issue with these value fluctuations is that, if you sell a large number of items for a certain price in bitcoin, then find that the value drops dramatically a short time later, that could mean A LOT of money lost. In that same vein, the opposite could be true and you could end up with way more money than expected if crypto values go up. But ultimately, it’s a gamble that most business owners are not willing to take.  

One option to remedy this issue is to use stablecoins, a type of digital currency comparable to the dollar, euro, or gold – in the sense that its price doesn’t vary so wildly. That provides a bit of stability, and business owners don’t have to worry about their livelihoods being ruined if digital currency one day ends up being worth much less than expected. Also, you can immediately convert your stablecoins into traditional currency after each transaction, so essentially you can use it simply to avoid the cash dilema and transfer it straight to useable money within minutes.  

What about NFTs and digital cannabis strains? 

Now, here’s where things get a bit confusing. The concept of paying for real weed with digital money is becoming relatively understandable (although it begs the question of the true value of money when all of it can be digitalized), but what about using digital money to buy digital weed? Welcome to the complicated world of NFTs.  

To quickly explain NFTs as best as I can: Non-Fungible Tokens, or NFTs, are used to sell and grant full ownership over digital assets. Non-fungible refers to the uniqueness of the digital asset. Cash money is considered fungible because there is no difference between dollars… as in, a five-dollar bill can be easily exchanged for another five-dollar bill and no one would be the wiser. With NFTs, each one has its own unique metadata and identifier that is recorded on the blockchain, which tracks ownership and makes it impossible for one NFT to be exchanged for another.  

Let’s consider a photograph, for example. First, you upload the image to one of the many existing NFT marketplaces, akin to Amazon or Etsy but for digital products. Then, you need to certify that the asset is original, a process known as “minting” that can usually be done with just a few clicks. And finally, you link your cryptocurrency wallet to your NFT account and list the asset for sale. To buy NFTs, the consumer would convert their money into USD Coins, Bitcoins, or Ethereum and buy whatever they want and can afford from the marketplace. Now, instead of receiving a printed image or downloadable file for limited use, they would be buying complete ownership over that photo. They would even be able to turn around and sell it themselves.

Now back to ‘digital weed’. Dubbed “Lava Coin,” it was created by Jessie Grundy, founder and chief executive of Peakz, an upscale cannabis brand based in Oakland, California. Unlike regular cannabis flower, the digital buds are globally legal and available anywhere in the world. But it’s not weed that you can can actually smoke, so what’s the point? The point, for many, is ownership over something that no one else has. You wouldn’t own a bag of weed per se, but you would own rights that that strain and those particular genetics. How much that’s worth depends on the strain and value placed on it by the industry, but it’s something interesting and distinctive no less.  

“The reason why someone would want digital weed is the uniqueness,” said Grundy, adding that “blockchain-based proprietary genetics would settle at least one eternal question in the weed world: who came up with what strain, with the exact genetics identified, and who did it first.” That is also a very good point but one that applies to cultivators rather than consumers and the general public.

Back to the blockchain  

Blockchain technology is a major factor in the success of both crypto and NFTs, and it’s also beginning to play a prominent role in the cannabis industry in sectors other than finance, such as seed-to-sale tracking. But what exactly is blockchain technology? Blockchain is a system of recording and exchanging information through a digital ledger of transactions. All inputted information is duplicated and distributed across the entire network of computer systems on the blockchain. Every time new transaction is made, or every time a new step is reached in the production/distribution process, a record of that is added to each blockchain of every participant’s ledger.  

Blockchain uses a decentralized database known as Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), and it’s managed and updated by multiple participants. So, if this technology is used to track the life of a cannabis plant, each person involved in its production cycle would be adding information to the blockchain at every step – cultivators, labs, extractors, distributors, and so on. Transactions are recorded with an immutable cryptographic signature called a hash, and everyone using the chain has access to these updates.  

This means that it would be immediately noticeable if any block in the chain is tampered with. If someone wanted to hack the blockchain, they would have to change every single block in the chain, across all recorded versions of the chain. The blockchains that are used more heavily are constantly growing and being distributed to more and more users, making them nearly impossible to corrupt as they expand.  

People are also drawn to the dispersed natured of how blockchains are managed. Most standard databases, such as an SQL database, have an individual or group of individuals in charge of data and operations. The concern is that it could lead to conflict of interests where said individuals may hack the ledgers and make changes that could give them monetary bonuses. With blockchains, no single person is running the show, and the entire system operated by the people who use it. The transparency and resiliency to hacking makes blockchains a legitimate disruptor for many industries, including cannabis.  

Final thoughts on cannabis, crypto, and NFTs

Pretty much all the topics mentioned in this article are relatively new concepts and industries. Cryptocurrency, blockchain technology, NFTS, and the entirety of the cannabis industry are all still in their infancy, only having been discussed with more seriousness over the last five years or so. There is a lot of room for growth in all of these sectors, and because one side of it deals with financial transactions and the other side is a metaphorical gold mine, it makes sense that cannabis and digital currency will end up expanding more together.

Hello and welcome! You made it to CBDtesters.co, the #1 internet spot for all the most thought-provoking and important cannabis and psychedelics-related news going on today. Join us whenever you can to stay aware of the quickly-expanding world of legal drugs and industrial hemp, and check out the The THC Weekly Newsletter, so you’re always first to know what’s going on.

DisclaimerHi, I’m a researcher and writer. I’m not a doctor, lawyer, or businessperson. All information in my articles is sourced and referenced, and all opinions stated are mine. I am not giving anyone advice, and though I am more than happy to discuss topics, should someone have a further question or concern, they should seek guidance from a relevant professional.

The post Digital Money and Digital Weed? How Crypto and NFTs are Reshaping the Cannabis Industry appeared first on CBD Testers.

Alternative Products Expo – The Premier Event for Cannabis Industry Products – Ticket Discounts!  

Formerly known as The USA CBD Expo, the need for rebranding became apparent at last year’s event in Chicago. This event, now The Alternative Products Expo, covers so much more than just CBD. This year, like last, you can expect to learn more about Delta 8, 9, and 10 THC, THC-O, HHC, psilocybin, THCV, CBN, and so many more exciting cannabinoid and alternative products.  

We’ll see you there from March 11th to 13th, at Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Click here to buy your tickets now!

Use the coupon code CBDTESTERS for 50% off all show tickets!! And remember to subscribe to The THC Weekly Newsletter for more deals on show tickets and exciting new products!  


2022 is expected to be an incredible year for the industry as a whole. Amazing shows, pending legalizations, and so many new products and compounds hitting the shelves. The cannabis trade-show experience is unparalleled. Alternative Products Expo offers attendees the opportunity to build connections, learn about all the latest trends and innovations, and be among like-minded people in a rapidly growing industry.  

This event will include over 50 speakers, more than 300 exhibitors, and thousands of products. Alternative products expo is sponsored by 3chi, Lost 8s, Dimo, Trinity Hemp, Cake, and other big names in the industry. That said, you can expect to find a lot THC (Delta 8, 9, and 10, THC-O, THCP, and THCV), CBN, CBG, CBD, CBC, and pretty much any hemp/cannabis derivative you can think of.  

Another exciting aspect about this year’s expo is the inclusion of psychedelic (or psychedelic adjacent) products. There won’t be any actual psilocybin on the convention floor, since it’s still in legal flux throughout the US, but a lot of companies that have already laid the groundwork to sell such products once they are legal, will be there. Many cities and states have mushroom legislation in the works, and it is prime time to start learning about them and connecting with people in that field.  

Again, The Alternative Products Expo will be held at the Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, from March 11th to 13th. We’re expecting to see over 10,000 attendees, more than 50 speakers, and upwards of 300 exhibitors at the event, and we at CBD Testers are very excited to attend!  

–> Remember to use coupon code TESTERS for 50% off any ticket to any show <– 


Hello and welcome! Thanks for stopping by CBDtesters.co, your #1 web source for cannabis and psychedelics-related news, offering the most interesting stories of today. Join us frequently to stay on-top of the quickly-moving world of legal drugs and industrial hemp, and remember to check out The THC Weekly Newsletterto ensure you’re never late on getting a story.

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