Molson Coors Fears Changing Tides
The Molson Coors company, which is one of the largest brewing companies in the world, fears losing revenue due to cannabis legalization efforts in the US and Canada. This news coincides with the news that for the first time in Aspen, CO, pot shops outsold liquor stores. It’s by a slight margin, but it’s just going to keep going up from here. According to Molson Coors’ most recent SEC filing,
Although the ultimate impact is currently unknown, the emergence of legal cannabis in certain U.S. states and Canada may result in a shift of discretionary income away from our products or a change in consumer preferences away from beer. As a result, a shift in consumer preferences away from our products or beer or a decline in the consumption of our products could result in a material adverse effect on our business and financial results.
However, Constellation Brands, the company behind Corona and Modello invested a $191 million stake in a Canadian marijuana company, Canopy Growth. They probably chose a Canadian company because the Canadian federal government is supposed to legalize cannabis nationally by July 2018, while the US federal government is still struggling with the issue. Again, Molson Coors could do the same and take a stake in a legal cannabis company to mitigate the risk of this new industry growing up beside it.
Federal Government WeedUpdate
Eighteen senators sent a letter to the Senate appropriations committee urging them to respect states’ rights regarding the legalization of cannabis when framing the 2018 Senate Appropriations Bill. All these bills introduced and letters sent, why don’t they just have a vote and change the law? They have the voters behind them, and the votes in both the house and senate, so what are they waiting for? This momentum doesn’t come along too often.
Also, Congressman Matt Gaetz from Florida wants to introduce medical marijuana legislation into Congress. The bill will put cannabis as a schedule III drug instead of schedule I. This will help the VA in helping veterans get prescription medical marijuana. It will also assist in conducting real research into the medicinal effects of the plant.
Finally, a lawsuit brought to the New York District court to legalize marijuana nationally. The case has been given “expedited” status by the judge, but the suit could drag on for a couple more years. Some of the arguments can be read here. Lawyers for the government are saying that the best avenue is to petition the DEA to reschedule cannabis. Are they kidding? It took 12 years for them to deny a petition submitted in 2002. One of the reasons cited for dismissing the appeal, was cannabis not being ‘known and reproducible? Otherwise, cannot be synthesized and monetized for corporate gain.
That decision was in 2014, but today in 2018, we have a different picture. Congress should jump on this opportunity and change the law of the land. And we might have some hope of achieving this with the Marijuana Justice Act, which just added a new cosponsor, Senator Kristen Gillibrand.
WeedUpdate from Across the Country
The amount of marijuana legislation going on at the federal level and the state level is truly staggering. 2018 is looking to be an important year for cannabis legalization, but only time will tell.
Voters in Arizona get another chance to vote on taxing and regulating marijuana like alcohol. Arizona is surrounded by states that have legalized cannabis, and the way things are going, it looks like the whole country will have some form of legalization within a couple of years.
Unfortunately, the medical marijuana bill that would have allowed the cultivation of cannabis in the state is now officially dead. Governor Deal urged voters to tell Congress to change the law at the federal level before any changes to state law occur.
The state passed a very compassionate bill to allow opioid users the ability to be subscribed medical marijuana. Reasons cited were the opiate epidemic, and the success of cannabis with pain management and getting individuals off of opioids.
A bill legalizing cannabis has been submitted to the state Senate for the third, but there is a good chance that this time it will pass. The tide is turning toward the acceptance that regulating and taxing marijuana like alcohol is good sound policy.
Another bill being sponsored is the legalization of hemp farming. Hemp is part of the cannabis genus, but it does not contain THC in enough quantities to get a person high. However, hemp has countless uses, such as textiles, paper, oils, bio-diesel, and plastics.
Legalization in Michigan is not going to be easy since there is a fight over how the voters perceive legalized cannabis. Activists on both sides of the aisle are in the state educating voters and lawmakers, so we’ll see what the voters will vote for this November.
Ellisville, MO, wants to be ready for when the state legalizes medical marijuana. City officials have instructed the staff to begin drafting zoning amendments and other policy changes to attract cannabis investments. Pretty forward-thinking for this small town.
Now that the use and possession of cannabis is not a crime in New Hampshire, legislators are now supporting a measure that would annul all past marijuana convictions. We’re glad to see the direction the country is taking enacting common sense policies.
Legislation has been introduced that will allow the use of medical marijuana. Tennessee is one of the states with no laws legalizing or decriminalizing cannabis, so this is an excellent step to sound and compassionate policy.
In 2015, the state passed the Compassionate Use Act which allowed medical patient’s access to Cannabidiol (CBD), which is proven to help many ailments, especially epilepsy. The first dispensary opened up last week, although law enforcement is still opposed to the legalization of the medicinal plant.
A bill that was introduced in January, which would allow terminally ill patients to try cannabis, has now been passed by the Utah house. Part of the law was that the Utah Department of Agriculture and food has to grow and sell the crop.
The state Senate passed legislation to allow individuals to expunge their first marijuana conviction. Fees for expungement will be used to maintain a database so that individuals don’t take advantage of the new law, and use it more than once.
Seattle Mayor announced that the city would expunge old marijuana convictions for its citizens, ending decades of prohibition that only hurt minorities. According to the Mayor, “The war on drugs had devastating impacts on people, especially people of color and their families,” Durkan said. “People’s lives were ruined for misdemeanor marijuana offenses. This action is a necessary first step in righting the wrongs of the past and putting our progressive values into action.”
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