Cannabis legalization proposals are becoming more popular, and the negative stigma associated with such products is slowly fading away. As Americans head to vote and are very divided ideologically on social and economic issues, there’s something most actually agree on: cannabis legalization. Ahead of the election, 33 states have already adopted medical or adult use, and now, three of the four states voting on recreational use are red conservative leaning states such as Arizona, Montana, and South Dakota. New Jersey, which swings liberal, is also considering adult-use legalization. “The prevailing wisdom has been that a conservative administration would be less receptive, but I think legalization is now inevitable on its own kinetic energy,” said Sturges Karban, Chief Executive Officer of cannabis logistics company ManifestSeven, according to a report by The Philadelphia Inquirer. MediPharm Labs Corp. (OTC: MEDIF) (TSX: LABS), Village Farms International, Inc. (NASDAQ: VFF), Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: SRNE), Aphria Inc. (NASDAQ: APHA) (TSX: APHA), Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTC: GTBIF)
The more welcoming perception towards cannabis legalization can be attributed to, in large part, the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized production of industrial hemp, transforming it into a mainstream agricultural product. Soon after, numerous categories of CBD products started to appear. Now, the growing awareness about the therapeutic benefits of cannabidiol has influenced people to buy such products, even at relatively high costs. As a result, mainstream retailers are now focusing on selling CBD-based products, as these have a higher profit margin. According to data provided by the Brightfield Group and published by Hemp Industry Daily, a survey of more than 5,000 CBD users in the U.S. reveals that 24% have used it to help quit smoking and quitters are often replacing cigarettes with either smokable hemp or vaping. And, 41% of quitters have entirely replaced tobacco with hemp CBD.
MediPharm Labs Corp. (OTCQX: MEDIF) (TSX: LABS) announced last week breaking news regarding the, “launch of LABS Cannabis CBD Isolate, the first in its LABS Cannabis branded product line and the first product of its kind in Canada.
Designed for Canadians seeking a THC-free experience, this 99% pure CBD crystalline isolate will be available through retailers across Canada.
“Produced at commercial scale, LABS Cannabis CBD Isolate has only trace amounts of THC – less than 0.2% – which makes it an excellent choice for a broad range of wellness consumers and patients seeking the potential benefits of CBD without the intoxicating effects of THC,” said Pat McCutcheon, CEO, MediPharm Labs. “For consumers who wish to consume CBD as part of their daily regimen or for specialized paediatric care in situations where CBD has been prescribed by a physician for a specific indication, LABS Cannabis CBD Isolate is the right choice.”
All Natural Cannabinoid Product: Pure CBD crystalline isolate manufactured in MediPharm Labs’ GMP-certified facility, is a high-quality, high-potency, fine-white crystalline powder with 99% pure CBD in a concentrated form. The product is an all-natural cannabinoid product made from cannabis extract refined through numerous steps. Each container of LABS Cannabis CBD Isolate contains 500mg of product in powder form. Because CBD crystalline isolate does not have intoxicating effects, and is almost flavourless and odourless, it can be taken daily and consumed in several different ways by new or experienced wellness consumers.
“MediPharm Labs has developed a reputation for quality and purity. LABS Cannabis CBD Isolate has the highest purity of all currently available concentrate formats and will now be an incredibly versatile and valued ingredient for consumers,” added Mr. McCutcheon. ”
Targeting Canada’s Prospective Cannabis Health Products Market: In the fall of 2019, EY Canada conducted a survey of approximately 3,000 individuals to provide a uniquely Canadian perspective on cannabis consumers1. A segment coined “Wellness Inquisitor” was identified to include approximately 1.1 million Canadians who consume almost daily and spend about $165 each per month on cannabis products. Wellness inquisitors reported that quality (83%) and intended effects (76%) are the most important purchase criteria followed by terpene profiles (43%) and brand (40%). Clinical research (56%) and the advice of health care practitioners (42%) were reported to be the most important information sources and influences over this group’s purchasing decisions.
In September 2020, Health Canada released its Summary Report: Consultation On Potential Market For Health Products Containing Cannabis That Would Not Require Practitioner Oversight2. This report revealed that nearly two-thirds of 1,104 respondents polled were interested in buying “cannabis health products”, with the majority of consumers interested in using the products to treat pain and inflammation. About 76% of consumers were aware of sub-populations who would be interested in CBD-dominant cannabis health products and felt anyone experiencing pain, trouble sleeping, or suffering from a chronic or mental health condition would benefit. Seniors, veterans, women experiencing menopause and athletes were all groups of interest.
Visit the LABS Cannabis website to learn more at www.labscannabis.com
1) EY Canada, 2019: Canadian cannabis consumer insights for legalization 2.0
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Village Farms International, Inc. (NASDAQ: VFF) announced earlier in September it had entered into a definitive purchase and sale agreement with Emerald Health Therapeutics, Inc. to acquire 36,958,500 common shares of Pure Sunfarms Corp. owned by Emerald, representing approximately 41.3% of the issued and outstanding common shares of Pure Sunfarms. Upon completion of the Pure Sunfarms Transaction, Village Farms will own 100% of the common shares of Pure Sunfarms. The total purchase price of CAD 79.9 Million (USD 61.0 Million) will be satisfied through a CAD 60.0 Million (USD 45.8 Million) cash payment and a CAD 19.9 Million (USD 15.2 Million) promissory note due six months from the closing date of the Pure Sunfarms Transaction. The Pure Sunfarms Transaction will be immediately accretive to Village Farms’ net income.
Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: SRNE) announced last year that it had formed a Chinese joint venture, Shenzhen Yunma Biotechnology Co., Ltd. (, with LifeTech Scientific Co., Ltd. to commercialize Sorrento’s proprietary water soluble cannabidiol (CBD) formulation technologies for consumer and pharmaceutical applications in Asia (excluding Japan). In addition, Shenzhen Yunma’s subsidiary, Yunnan Masheng Health Science Co., Ltd., has obtained a Yunnan industrial hemp plantation permit, as well as governmental pre-approval to establish an industrialized processing, CBD extraction and isolation operation in Kunming (Yunnan Province, China). Sorrento holds 40% of the equity in the Shenzhen Yunma joint venture and LifeTech holds the remaining 60% of the equity. Sorrento has contributed the exclusive license to Sorrento’s water-soluble CBD technology for the Asian territory to Shenzhen Yunma. With the hemp and CBD supplies from Yunnan Masheng secured, Shenzhen Yunma will build manufacturing capacity to potentially deliver hundreds of metric tons of CBD annually to the global markets.
Aphria Inc. (NASDAQ: APHA) (TSX: APHA) recently announced its financial results for the first quarter ended August 31st, 2020. All amounts are expressed in Canadian dollars, unless otherwise noted and except for per gram, kilogram, kilogram equivalents, and per share amounts. “Our strong first quarter results reflect the continued robust growth and development of Aphria’s adult-use cannabis brands in Canada,” said Irwin D. Simon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “We are consistently taking a diversified approach to our innovation, strategic partnerships, global expansion and corporate citizenship to fuel sustainable, long-term growth. We believe that the strength of our balance sheet and cash position, combined with our consistent focus on our highest-return priorities, will generate sustainable long-term value for all stakeholders.” The Company reported Record gross revenue for adult-use cannabis of $69.6 million in the first quarter, an increase of 23% from prior quarter and the sixth consecutive quarter of growth.
Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTCQX: GTBIF) recently opened the Rise Monroeville, its 49th retail location, on October 21. Profits from the first day of sales will be donated to 412 Food Rescue, a non-profit that works with food retailers, wholesalers, restaurants, caterers, universities and other food providers to rescue unsellable but perfectly good food and provide it to nonprofit organizations that serve those experiencing food insecurity. “We are thrilled to open the 13th Rise™ store in Pennsylvania as we continue to create jobs across the state,” said Green Thumb Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. “The team is also honored to support 412 Food Rescue’s important work of collaborating with community businesses and organizations to help eradicate hunger, especially during these difficult times.” Over 378,000 patients are registered with the Pennsylvania program, including 225,000 active card holders. Approximately 16.5 million cannabis products have been sold since the program’s inception, yielding $780 million in retail sales and $519 million in wholesale sales.
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