Earlier in 2018, the Farm Bill restored industrial hemp to nationwide legal production for the first time since World War II. Removing hemp from the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 (CSA) also helped create a financial domino effect – eventually leading to mass-market retailers CVS Health, Rite Aid, and Walgreens Boots Alliance to carry hemp-CBD brands. Notably, cannabis-based oils have become widely popular because of their potent and immediate effects. In fact, CBD products overall are having a major impact on the global industry because they offer a number of therapeutic benefits without the psychoactive effects of THC. Currently, this segment of the cannabis industry is also gaining prevalence for its potential to treat serious medical conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, depression, and anxiety. And as the U.S. hemp industry matures, it is expected to transition from being a seed, textile, and industrial product importer to a global exporter. And according to data compiled by Hemp Business Journal, a division of New Frontier Data, the total sales for the U.S. hemp industry totaled USD 820 Million in 2017. The research also suggests that the industry is expected to grow to USD 1.9 Billion by 2022 and at a CAGR of 14.4% during the 5-year period. U.S. Lithium Corp. (OTC: LITH), Aphria Inc. (NYSE: APHA), CV Sciences, Inc (OTC: CVSI), CannTrust Holdings Inc. (NYSE: CTST), HEXO Corp. (NYSE: HEXO)
The 2018 Farm Bill, however, explicitly preserved the FDA’s authority to regulate products containing cannabis or cannabis-derived compounds under the FD&C Act and section 351 of the Public Health Service Act (PHS Act). This leaves a lot of uncertainties regarding which products can be sold legally. According to the FDA, it treats products containing cannabis or cannabis-derived compounds as it does any other FDA-regulated products – meaning they’re subject to the same authorities and requirements as FDA-regulated products containing any other substance. This is true regardless of whether the cannabis or cannabis-derived compounds are classified as hemp under the 2018 Farm Bill. And despite the federal regulatory uncertainties, at least 70% of the 2019 U.S. hemp harvest is intended for extract production, with Colorado leading the nation in hemp cultivation and processing land area with over 80,000 acres reported. “The 29 U.S. states reporting licensed hemp cultivation acreage total almost half a million acres in combined cultivation land area, which is a massive increase compared to 2018 figures of a total land area barely over 100,000 acres. While there continues to be uncertainty and a healthy amount of confusion around hemp cultivation for CBD production, it is clear that demand is nonetheless continuing to rise across the U.S.,” noted Giadha Aguirre de Carcer, New Frontier Data CEO and Founder. “As states issue more licenses, consumer demand increases, and mass-market retailers such as CVS and Walgreens continue to expand their own product offerings, we expect the FDA may be forced to provide further regulatory clarifications sooner rather than later.”
U.S. Lithium Corp. (OTC: LITH) announced earlier last week that, “its Board of Directors and shareholders have approved an amendment to the Articles of Incorporation changing the name of the corporation from U.S. Lithium Corp. to BioELife Corp. The name change will better reflect the Company’s new strategic focus on the rapidly growing CBD market. The Company expects this action will become effective within the next 30 days. The Company will also be launching a new website and seek a new trading symbol for its common stock immediately after the name change becomes effective.
‘BioELife reflects the Company’s new direction into helping improve individual lives through non-addictive remedies for stress and pain relief as well as other medical purposes,’ stated Gregory Rotelli, Chairman of the Board and President of LITH. Mr. Rotelli further stated, ‘We’re positioning our Company as ‘Nature’s Bio Equivalent’ with a ‘seed to shelf’ philosophy. Our raw materials are sourced directly from our partner farms in America’s heartland which grow only the best quality CBD strains for use in all our formulations. Throughout our farming and GMP manufacturing process, our products are made using the purest and most potent ingredients available and are backed by clinical data and independent laboratory testing.’
BioELife currently partners with well-known farmers, certified contract manufacturers and key distributors to produce and distribute exceptional products at the lowest possible cost. Positive testimonials from BioELife clients and patients continue to substantiate the Company’s objective to provide products that perform better than any currently on the market and often better than prescription medications. The Company has already expanded manufacturing and distribution channels in these first few weeks since entering the CBD industry.
About the Company: US Lithium Corp’s new strategic direction as BioELife was created by successful pharmaceutical entrepreneurs dedicated to using nature’s resources to fight pain and infection while reducing the dependency on opioids and their terrible side effects. The Company is uniquely positioned to capitalize on the emerging Cannabinoid market that is growing at phenomenal rates and is expected to reach $20 Billion over the next five years. The Company has created a ‘seed to shelf’ value-added product development and marketing organization with direct contracts for raw materials, scientific formulation, manufacturing, and distribution of medically focused Cannabinoid products. In order to better reflect this new strategic direction, the Company is in the process of changing its name and symbol to BioELife which should be effective within the next thirty days.”
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Aphria Inc. (NYSE: APHA) through its subsidiary Aphria Deutschland GmbH announced last april, the launch of the Company’s first CBD-based nutraceutical, the first product in its CBD-based cosmetics line for the German market. Featuring CBD derived from hemp, the CannRelief brand of products are being produced in the European Union and distributed by the Company’s subsidiary, CC Pharma, which has access to more than 13,000 pharmacies throughout Germany. “We are excited to introduce our first brand of CBD products for the German nutraceutical and cosmetics market,” said Jakob Ripshtein, President of Aphria. “Supported by our extensive distribution network through CC Pharma, CannRelief provides a natural extension to Aphria’s growing business opportunities in the German medical cannabis market. We look forward to providing a full range of CannRelief CBD products this year.”
CV Sciences, Inc (OTCQB: CVSI), a preeminent supplier and manufacturer of hemp cannabidiol (CBD) products through its brand PlusCBD Oil™, announced that it is the first-ever CBD sponsor of the Farmers Insurance Open. The Farmers Insurance Open is a PGA Golf tournament that took place Thursday, Jan. 23, through Sunday, Jan. 26, at Torrey Pines Golf Course in San Diego, California. “We are proud to be the official CBD Partner of the Farmers Insurance Open as this serves as another proof point of our commitment to safe, high-quality products,” said Joseph Dowling, Chief Executive Officer, CV Sciences. “We believe both professional and amateur golfers can benefit from PlusCBD™ Oil products and we look forward to increasing our visibility among the golf community through this sponsorship.”
CannTrust Holdings Inc. (NYSE: CTST) is a federally regulated licensed producer of medical and recreational cannabis in Canada, and the 2018 Canadian Cannabis Awards “Top Licensed Producer of the Year”. CannTrust Holdings Inc. recently announced it has finalized a Letter of Intent with Société québécoise du cannabis to provide Quebec with high-quality cannabis for the recreational market. The LOI will serve as an introduction of CannTrust’s recreational brands to the Quebec market beginning with two of the Company’s most established strains that will be available through SQDC later this year. “This LOI signifies the first step towards a long and impactful relationship with the SQDC and consumers in Quebec. This is an important milestone as we have secured national distribution across all ten provinces for our adult-use products,” said Peter Aceto, Chief Executive Officer, CannTrust. “This will allow us to develop our brand presence in Quebec at a time when consumers are beginning to develop their preferences.”
HEXO Corp. (NYSE: HEXO) is an award-winning consumer packaged goods cannabis company that creates and distributes innovative products to serve the global cannabis market. HEXO Corp. recently announced that it had received licenses from Health Canada for its cannabis Centre of Excellence in Belleville, Ontario, for research, and for the sale of cannabis topicals, extracts, edibles and beverages from its flagship Gatineau campus. While a Processing Licence provides for testing on live plants, fresh and dried plant material, seeds, and oil, a Research and Development Licence significantly expands the scope of work that can be conducted on cannabis and its derivatives. The Company plans to conduct research and development at its Vaughan and Montreal Innovation, Development and Engineering hubs, as well as at its Centre of Excellence in Belleville and in other facilities. “The research licence will allow us to take our innovation work to the next level, with testing on derivative products, including taste testing. Consumers have high expectations for their packaged goods experiences, and cannabis will be no different,” said Sebastien St-Louis, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of HEXO Corp. “We are committed to not only ensuring a quality consistent experience but to also guaranteeing that experiences powered by HEXO meet these expectations.”
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