The Week In Cannabis: Tilray, BMW, Teen Use, The Valens Co, Flora Growth, Italy And More

Below is a recap of the main news related to the cannabis industry and markets for the week of September 6, 2021.

Tilray

Shares of cannabis giant Tilray Inc. TLRY (TSX: TLRY) traded down on Friday afternoon, after the company reported that its stockholders have approved an increase in the number of authorized shares of its common stock.

As such, the cannabis company said that with additional authorized shares, it can accelerate its progress toward its goal of delivering $4 billion in revenue, a goal Tilray CEO Irwin Simon told Benzinga it intended to achieve by the end of fiscal 2024. The company isalso looking to increase its retail market share from 16% to 30% by FY24 end.

BMW Commits To Hemp And Recycling

In its quest to reduce its carbon footprint, BMW (OTC: BMWYY) will begin using more hemp and other environmentally friendly materials inside its vehicles.

Benzinga Cannabis’ content is now available in Spanish on El Planteo.

It is no coincidence that BMW was named the world's most sustainable automaker by S&P Dow Jones last November: the company adopted new strategies that focus on the use of greener materials, some of which will be recycled.

For example, the company has been using hemp in the door panel linings of its electric i3 for some years now. This feature not only fulfills an ecological function but also plays a role in lightening the vehicle.

Their goal? To reduce the life cycle CO2 emissions of their cars by more than 40%, by 2030.

Meanwhile, the firm confirmed that it will use hemp, flax, and kenaf (a plant that has connections to cannabis) fibers to produce components such as door panels.

Italy

In Italy, the Justice Committee of the Lower House approved a reform that decriminalizes recreational consumption of marijuana and allows home cultivation of up to four plants.

What remains to be done? The vote must be debated and ratified by the Upper House before becoming law.

If approved, Italy will become the first country in Europe to decriminalize the adult use of marijuana. And one of the pioneer states in legalizing home cultivation, after Spain, and the Czech Republic.

Increased penalties

According to ANSA, Mario Perantoni, president of the Chamber of Deputies and co-author of the bill: "The cultivation of no more than 4 female plants at home is decriminalized".

However, the reform will increase the penalties for trafficking and sale of cannabis from six to ten years.

The European country has a rather relaxed approach, as it allows the sale of cannabis that has a high CBD percentage and a less than 0.6% of THC, in dispensary-style stores.

No Relation Between Marijuana Legalization And Increased Use Among Teenagers

A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that marijuana legalization laws are not associated with increased use amongst high school students.

“Consistent with estimates from prior studies, there was little evidence that [recreational marijuana laws] or [medical marijuana laws] encourage youth marijuana use,” reads the paper.

The study builds upon a previous paper that used data from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) for the period 1993-2017, which found that marijuana adoption was associated with an 8% decrease in the odds of marijuana use among high school students. 

Markets

Shares traded down this week. Over the last five trading days -- including last Friday, since markets were closed on Monday:

  • The ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF MJ: lost 6.8%.
  • The AdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF YOLO: fell 7.3%.
  • The AdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF MSOS: tumbled 8.1%.
  • The Cannabis ETF THCX: was down 5%.
  • The Amplify Seymour Cannabis ETF CNBS: slipped 6.7%.
  • The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust SPY closed the week down 1.5%.

M&A

Acquiring Company Acquired Company Price Conditions
Ayr Wellness Inc. AYR AYRWF Cultivauna, owner of Levia $20M Cash and stock

Financings

Company Lead Financier Amount
THC Therapeutics, Inc. THCT Shefford Capital Partners $50M

Earnings Reports

NewLake Capital Partners, Inc. NLCP reported its second-quarter financial results with revenue of $6.7 million, compared to $2.1 million in the same period of 2020. The New Canaan, Connecticut-based company recently closed its initial public offering of 3.91 million common shares at an offering price of $26.00 per share, collecting gross proceeds of around $102 million.

Find all the details on these and other earnings reports on Benzinga Cannabis’ Earnings Center.

Poke A Bowl

Poke A Bowl, a brand of ash & resin-removing ashtrays with a lid has officially launched its product in the state of Massachusetts. Green Meadows, a dispensary located in Southbridge and owned by direct descendants of General George S. Patten, has begun selling the full line of Poke A Bowl products.

“Recently, we have received a lot of inquiries from several dispensaries in the North East, interested in carrying our products, as well as fans of the brand wanting to get their hands on a Poke A Bowl locally,” said actor Creagen Dow, CEO of Poke A Bowl. “With Green Meadows, we found that our families share a history of military service and the support of veterans. We could not be more excited to take our first step into the great state of Massachusetts than with Green Meadows.”

AUDACIOUS Teams Up With Professional Bull Riders On CBD Products

Australis Capital Inc. AUSA AUSAF, operating as AUDACIOUS, and Professional Bull Riders (PBR) confirmed that they'd reached a multi-year agreement for AUDACIOUS to be the "Official CBD of Professional Bull Riders." PBR is the world's leading bull riding organization.

The Valens Co

The Valens Company Inc. VLNS VLNCFentered into an exclusive partnership with pharmaceuticals company Epsilon Healthcare Limited EPN to access Epsilon’s Manufacturing Practices (GMP) facility in Australia for product manufacturing. Through this partnership, the company is expanding its outreach across GMP markets in Latin America, Europe, UK and the Asia-Pacific regions.

As part of the deal between Epsilon and Cannvalate, Valens will have access to Epsilon's GMP manufacturing capabilities at the Southport Facility located in Queensland, Australia, the largest cannabis manufacturing facility in the Southern Hemisphere and the largest at domestic scale with complimentary Therapeutic Good Administration (TGA) and EU GMP capabilities.

Later in the week, Valens confirmed a white label partnership with a cannabis retailer Fire & Flower Holdings Corp. FAF FFLWF.

Under the deal, Valens will manufacture Fire & Flower's Revity CBD oil for distribution in Ontario, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan with the potential to expand into additional provincial and territorial markets in the future.

Flora Growth

Flora Growth Corp. FLGC had a busy week.

The company obtained its 2021 export quota from the Colombian Technical Quotas Group to grow up to 7,900 kilograms of high-THC cannabis dried flower for direct sale or processing into derivative products for export to international markets.

The news comes on the heels of Flora Labs receiving authorization by the Colombian National Food and Drug Surveillance Institute to be Good Manufacturing Practices-certified to manufacture cosmetic products.

The new 2021 export quota should be enough to meet the international demand for Flora’s product for the rest of the year and the onset of 2022, the company’s management noted.

Later in the week, Flora signed agreements with TruTrace Technologies, Inc. TTT TTTSF and Applied DNA Sciences, Inc. APDN to launch a complete and differentiated global cannabis product validation and authentication platform for consumers, distributors and government regulators.

Flora will use TruTrace’s blockchain-based SaaS software to track inventory and product quality testing, including molecular tagging through Applied DNA’s Certain T platform to track the cannabis flower and derivatives originating from its Cosechemos cultivation and extraction facility.

Finally, Flora signed a commercial agreement with American e-commerce company Zulily, LLC to launch a sales and marketing campaign across the US for its Stardog Loungewear product line.

Initially, the brand and product launch via Zulily will feature Stardog’s best-selling product, hemp shoes, and is expected to kick off within the next month.

Michigan

  • Red White & Bloom Brands Inc. RWB RWBYF received adult-use prequalification status under the licensing provisions of the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act and associated rules via its subsidiary, RWB Michigan, LLC.  This approval represents the authorization of the company to move forward with its full operational strategy in Michigan and complete the licensing process for its intended facilities.
  • Society C, a new brand owned by cannabis company Natrabis, is opening a 54,000 square-foot marijuana cultivation facility in Lake Orion, Michigan, this week.
  • California’s fifth best-selling premium flower company, Wonderbrett, has entered into a first-of-its-kind cultivation partnership with Michigan-based operator Cloud Cannabis Co., resulting in the acclaimed legacy brand bringing its proprietary genetics and cultivation expertise to Michigan consumers.

Other News

Cannabis Safety & Quality (CSQ), a cannabis certification program created to meet both GFSI Benchmarking Requirements (set to be benchmarked in 2022) and ISO requirements, announced its newest cannabis-specific cGMP and cGAP audits as a stepping stone towards CSQ Certification built to help smaller cultivators, extractors and manufacturers achieve Accredited Certification.

Most small-medium cannabis operations are not as equipped to meet CSQ’s stringent level of standards, especially compared to the Curaleafs of the world with more employees and bandwidth to develop effective cannabis safety and quality management systems. Achieving cGMP or cGAP certification from CSQ is the first step within a systematic continuous improvement process developed by CSQ after identifying these glaring pain points during a series of trial audits. Now that CSQ has made this lower level of certification available, facilities of any size can become more confident in being up-to-date with Good Manufacturing Practices, and more extensive certifications are brought within reach.

“Our goal has always been to clean up the cannabis industry overall, by helping all companies, no matter the size prevent recalls and provide the safest possible product to the consumer, so when we started noticing that meeting CSQ’s standards was far too much to ask of smaller operators who are just trying to do right by the consumer, we knew we needed to provide some sort of pathway to gradually bring them closer to the gold standard as they scale. Small, start-up operations make up a solid portion of this industry, so far be it for us to keep them from taking the appropriate baby steps necessary to eventually achieving accredited certification,” said Tyler Williams, Founder and Chief Technical Officer of CSQ.

Top Stories Of The Week

Check out the top stories on Benzinga Cannabis this week:

Top Spanish Stories

Lead image by Ilona Szentivanyi. Copyright: Benzinga.

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