Bill Weinberg's blog

UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs deschedules cannabis —partially

Planet WatchAt the annual Vienna meeting of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, the governing body of the UN Office on Drugs & Crime (UNODCvoted Dec. 2 to strike cannabis from Schedule IV of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, the global treaty regulating drug control policy.

Montana's tortuous trail to legalization

Posted on November 8th, 2020 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , .

MontanaVoters in Montana passed a ballot measure mandating legalization of adult-use cannabis. But there was a pre-emptive attempt in the state legislature to repeal it before it even passed. Montana's road to legalization has been a long and twisted one, and there may be further political fights ahead. 

Hemp & Native American Sovereignty

SiouxThe original peoples of what is now the United States were left in legal limbo in the wake of the 2018 Farm Bill, which made hemp cultivation again lawful. Federally recognized Native American tribes could not cultivate under state regulation, because the states have limited jurisdiction on their reservations. But the US Agriculture Department dragged its heels in issuing federal regs that could apply on these lands. Caught between two sovereigns, many farmers in Indian country are asserting their right to cultivate hemp under the un-extinguished sovereignty of their own Native nations.

Study finds no link between legalization, pedestrian traffic fatalities

Posted on September 8th, 2020 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , .

trafficQuestions about road safety have been a real concern as cannabis legalization has unfolded across 11 states, with medical marijuana laws in many more. But with several years of data to analyze, a new study finds no link between these policies and traffic fatalities.

The Rise of Franken-Cannabinoids?

cannabis geneticsIn the near future, the CBD, THC or other cannabinoids you consume in edibles or medications may not be derived from cannabis at all, but grown in a laboratory.

Kevin Chen, CEO and co-founder of Hyasynth Bio, describes the Montreal-based start-up as "focused on engineering strains of yeast to produce the active compounds of cannabis without having to grow plants."

The Case of the Missing THC

Posted on September 1st, 2020 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

THCCBD products are now everywhere—health-food emporia, pharmacies, truck-stops. And pursuant to the 2018 Farm Bill, they are now legal—as long as the CBD is derived from “hemp” as opposed to what has traditionally been called “marijuana.” Hemp, as legally defined, is cannabis with under 0.3% THC—the psychoactive component of the plant, responsible for the long-stigmatized “high.”

But even the hempiest hemp—rope, not dope, as they used to say—usually has some THC.

The First Legal Hemp Harvest: A Look Back

Posted on August 24th, 2020 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , , .

hempThe autumn of 2019 saw the United States' first hemp harvest since effective prohibition of the crop under the strictures of the Marihuana Tax Act in 1937. These strictures were overturned in the Farm Bill signed into law by President Trump in the closing days of 2018. This harvest was looked to eagerly across much of rural America, as legal hemp had been plugged as a salvation for the nation's struggling farmers—and the soaring popularity of CBD appeared to provide a booming market. The fashionable cannabinoid had also been legalized by the 2018 Farm Bill—when derived from hemp, or cannabis with less than 0.3% THC.

From Mythos to Monoculture

Posted on August 21st, 2020 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .

hempHemp’s Curious Cultural Trajectory

Now that hemp has finally arrived at its long-sought status as a legal crop and commodity, there is a sense of inevitability to its deviation from the utopian vision that animated the advocates who fought for it a generation ago.

A tension that has always existed between two currents in the subculture of hemp advocacy is increasingly weighted toward the more mundane—activists versus entrepreneurs, idealism versus pragmatism, agrarianism versus agribusiness. And finally the original paradigm of a crop with multitudinous uses as “food, fuel and fiber,” holding the potential to solve humanity’s ecological crisis, versus the hegemony of CBD.

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