The Week In Cannabis: FDA, CDC, Delta-8 THC, WADA, Canopy, Sundial, Canada, LatAm And More

The Week In Cannabis: FDA, CDC, Delta-8 THC, WADA, Canopy, Sundial, Canada, LatAm And More

Below is a recap of the main news related to the cannabis industry and markets for the week of September 13, 2021.

FDA And CDC Issue Warnings On Delta-8 THC

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued warnings to consumers about the potential risks of consuming unregulated products that are advertised as containing the cannabinoid delta-8 THC. 

There has generally been a lack of rules governing delta-8 THC, which can be synthesized using CBD from legal hemp and is being sold in states regardless of whether they’ve legalized marijuana

According to the CDC, “Variations in product content, manufacturing practices, labeling, and potential misunderstanding of the psychoactive properties of delta-8 THC may lead to unexpected effects among consumers.”

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

According to the FDA, some manufacturers may use potentially unsafe household chemicals to make delta-8 THC through a chemical synthesis process, and additional chemicals may be used to change the color of the final product. The final delta-8 THC product may contain harmful by-products (contaminants) due to the chemicals used in this process.

Neither agency proposed banning the production or sale of the cannabinoid. The CDC encouraged consumers to be aware of possible misleading labeling and said retailers should “provide information to consumers about the psychoactive qualities of delta-8 THC,” reported Marijuana Moment.

Olympic Cannabis Ban To Be Re-Examined

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) intends to review the status of cannabis on its banned substance list, following last summer's exclusion of track star Sha’Carri Richardson from competing at the Tokyo Olympics after she tested positive for cannabis in her home state of Oregon, where marijuana is legal.

The scientific review will be conducted by a group that advises WADA in 2022.

“Following receipt of requests from a number of stakeholders, the (executive committee) endorsed the decision of the List Expert Advisory Group to initiate in 2022 a scientific review of the status of cannabis,” a WADA statement read. “Cannabis is currently prohibited in competition and will continue to be in 2022.”

Native American Cannabis Alliance, Everscore Creating World's Largest Cannabis Cultivation Source

The Native American Cannabis Alliance, a joint venture of Tim Houseberg, executive director of Cherokee Nation-based Native Health Matters Foundation, and Everscore signed three memoranda of understanding with indigenous farmers from the Mohawk Nation, Cheyenne and the Arapaho Tribal Nations.

The ground-breaking agreements will oversee the transformation of over 500,000 acres of tribal farmland into cannabis farming that will include agricultural services, the creation of manufacturing campuses to process the cannabis and workforce development, with products to be sold on the Everscore online marketplace.

Markets

Over the five trading days of this week:

  • The ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF MJ: lost 3%.
  • The AdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF YOLO: rose 0.6%.
  • The AdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF MSOS: gained 3.3%.
  • The Cannabis ETF THCX: was down 3.5%.
  • The Amplify Seymour Cannabis ETF CNBS: tumbled 0.9%.
  • The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust SPY closed the week down 1.62%.

M&A

Acquiring Company Acquired Company Price Conditions
Glass House Brands Inc. (NEOGLAS.A.U) GLAS GHBWF Greenhouse facility in Southern California $158M Cash and stock
Ayr Wellness Inc. AYR AYRWF Garden State Cannabis Dispensary $101M Cash and stock
Akerna Corp (NASDAQ: KERN) 365 Cannabis $17M Cash an stock
Halo Collective Inc. HALO HCANF Food Concepts LLC $8.2M Stock
Chalice Brands Ltd. CHAL CHALF Acreage Holdings, Inc. ACRG ACRDF’s Oregon dispensaries $6.5M Cash and debt
InMed Pharmaceuticals INM BayMedica $3.66M Stock
Resonate Blends, Inc. KOAN lemon and grass Undisclosed Undisclosed
MedX Holdings Inc. MEDH Craft Herbs LLC Undisclosed Undisclosed

Financings

Company Lead Financier Amount
Devi Holdings dba Nature’s Medicines AFC Gamma, Inc. AFCG $30M additional credit facility
Decibel Cannabis Company Inc. DB DBCCF Eight Capital, Haywood Securities Inc., and Raymond James Ltd $15M

Earnings Reports

  • Fire & Flower Holdings Corp. FAF FFLWF reported its financial and operational results for the second quarter of 2021, revealing a 51% year-over-year increase in revenue to CA$43.3 million ($34.2 million). Moreover, the Toronto-based company revealed that the quarter ended July 31 was the fifth consecutive quarter of positive adjusted EBITDA, which totaled CA$3.1 million, up by 176% year-over-year.
  • High Tide Inc. HITI HITI (FSE:2LYA) reported financials for the period ending July 31, revealing that its quarterly revenue nearly doubled as its acquisition spree continues. Revenue increased by 99% year-over-year, reaching CA$48.1 million ($38 million), encompassing acquisitions of META Growth Corp. META, Smoke Cartel, Inc. SMKC, Fab Nutrition, LLC., and DHC Supply LLC., operating as Daily High Club. In addition, CA$38.4 million in revenue was earned in Canada, CA$9.6 million in the United States and an immaterial amount internationally.

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

Sports

cbdMD, Inc. YCBD announced partnerships with four CrossFit athletes to further expand their footprint in the global fitness landscape.

The signings include 2021 CrossFit Games champion Justin Medeiros and Annie Thorisdottir, the first women’s back-to-back champion (2011, 2012), as well as the seven-time CrossFit Games qualifier and 2019 second-place finisher Noah Ohlsen and Brent Fikowski, who qualified seven times and earned third place in 2021.

Advocacy

In a live-streamed event, NBA star Al Harrington, 4-Time Grammy-award winner Drake, world champion boxer Badou Jack, rapper & activist Killer Mike, Meek Mill, NFL player Julio Jones and NBA star John Wall and others announced on Tuesday that they’d co-written and signed a letter to President Joe Biden requesting a general pardon for “all persons subject to federal criminal or civil enforcement on the basis of a nonviolent marijuana offense.”

The letter to President Biden, spearheaded by Weldon Angelos of the Weldon Project/Mission Green and Academy for Justice Director Erik Luna, includes signatures from some 150 artists, athletes, producers, lawmakers, law enforcement officials, academics, business leaders, policy experts, reform advocates and other professionals.

Angelos, along with Luna, Harrington and Ralo, also participated in the live-streamed event in which they discussed the letter to President Biden and emphasized the call for clemency.

The stories of those this will help are compelling, Angelos told Benzinga, noting that Drake, Lil Baby, Meek Mill, Killer Mike and dozens of other hip-hop artists signed on the letter in support of their friend and fellow rapper Ralo, who is facing 8 years for a nonviolent marijuana offense.

Later in the week Al Harrington’s cannabis company, Viola, launched the Harrington Institute, a school for cannabis education in partnership with Cleveland School of Cannabis.

The 14-week online program and individual classes will give students an insider’s perspective on cannabis and dispensary operations, cultivation and manufacturing.

Canada: Canopy And Sundial

Canopy Growth Corporation WEED CGC is launching its first-ever CBD vape, dubbed 'whisl.'

Sundial Growers Inc. SNDL has launched Caviar Cones, its newest product under the Top Leaf brand. The Top Leaf Caviar Cones, available in a 4 x 0.5 gram rolled multipack, are a handcrafted blend of dried, milled flower, dry sift hash and full-spectrum winterized oil with THC of 30% or higher.

Latin America

PharmaCielo Ltd. PCLO PCLOF has received Colombian GMP Certification for Phytotherapeutics manufactured with its extracts and proprietary cultivars from the Colombian National Food and Drug Surveillance Institute.

The Valens Company Inc. VLNS VLNCF signed a regional distribution agreement with APOTEKA SRL, a division of GFI Costa Rica, a pharmaceutical holding company with operations throughout Central America and the Caribbean.

Under the agreement, APOTEKA will bring Valens' nūance brand, with future plans to include the Green Roads brand, into three core Central American markets: Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic and Panama.

Valens has developed two CBD tinctures for APOTEKA that combine known wellness ingredients with CBD.

Europe

The lower house of the Czech Republic's Parliament approved an amendment that will allow the amount of THC in industrial hemp to be tripled.

Currently, the THC limit stands at 0.3%. With the approved amendment, it could reach 1%.

According to Expats, this measure will also improve the availability of medical marijuana, thanks to the fact that it will make it easier to obtain licenses to grow cannabis for therapeutic use.

Likewise, the draft of the reform sent to the president establishes that hemp extracts and tinctures containing up to 1% THC will not be considered as an "addictive substance."

Other News

Cannabis Crime Scene, a new cannabis podcast hosted by Green Market Report editor-in-chief Debra Borchardt and Conscious Communications Collective Founder Leland Radonvaovic launched this week.

The duo is investigating stories where the law and the cannabis industry clash. The 30-minute

weekly episodes cover the real, the weird and the emotional, including Netflix documentary Murder Mountain, federal lawsuits, bribery and social justice.

“Cannabis Crime Scene has brought together my two favorite things - true crime podcasts and the cannabis industry,” Borchardt told Benzinga. “I have had so much fun doing the podcast with Leland and getting to talk about things I normally don't cover as a financial reporter.”

LFTD Partners Inc. LSFP (www.LFTDPartners.com) announced that the company’s name has changed to LFTD Partners Inc. from Acquired Sales Corp., and its ticker symbol on the OTCQB Venture Market has changed to “LSFP” from “AQSP”.

Meanwhile, HEXO Corp HEXO HEXO announced that it has achieved its goal to become 100% carbon neutral by September 2021 by offsetting the company's operational carbon emissions including the personal emissions of all of its 1200 employees.

To do so, the Ottawa-based cannabis producer partnered with Offsetters, a leading provider of sustainability and carbon-management solutions that helps companies reduce and offset their environmental impacts.

Hexo disclosed that it had offset a total of 25,965 tons of carbon, including 9,610 tons of operational carbon emissions and 6,355 tons of the personal carbon emissions produced by the company's employees.

"HEXO intends to retain carbon-neutrality as it expands into the United States, elevating sustainability standards in cannabis markets across North America. The organization has worked hard to strengthen its leadership position in Canada, maintaining profitability while protecting the planet and its people," HEXO CEO Sebastien St-Louis told Benzinga.

Executive Moves

Find out all about the latest executive moves at:

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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