In this week’s cannabis news report, the Safe Baking Act was read in the Senate; Missouri cannabis sales exceed $2 billion; NorCal’s famous event, the Emerald Cup announces honorary award winners for 2023 and the European Union continues to stall on legalization.
Combined cannabis sales in Missouri exceed $1 billion
Combined sales of legal regulated medical cannabis and adult use in Missouri have exceeded $1 billion Since the state legalized medical and recreational markets. This significant sales milestone was achieved on May 2, according to the Missouri Department of Cannabis Law.
State government records show that April saw $30.1 million in medical marijuana sales and $91 million in adult cannabis sales, which totaled $121.1 million. By comparison, March recorded $126.2 million in legal cannabis sales. Projections indicate that the cannabis market in Missouri could reach a value of up to $505 million in 2023.
Since launching the country’s regulated adult use market in February 2023, it has encountered some of the expected early challenges seen in other new recreational markets, such as supply shortages and price hikes. On the other hand, the medical marijuana market in Missouri started in October 2020 and has been in operation for much longer.
Read the Safe Banking Act Senate Banking Committee
The US Senate Banking Committee met May 11 to discuss the SAFE Banking Act, crucial piece of legislation that would make it easier for the cannabis industry to access banking services.
the meeting, “Examining the challenges of cannabis banking for small businesses and workers,” testimony from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, including Sens. Jeff Merkley, D-OR., and Steve Daines, R-MT., who reintroduced the independent bill last week. The committee will also hear from witnesses, including coalition organizers. Cannabis for Color, Medicines Policy Coalition, and International Federation of Food and Trade Workers.
Morgan Bacchia, managing partner at Poseidon Investment Management, called today a “historic” and “significant step” towards access to banking services. “The industry was well represented by a professional and honest discussion about the need for banking SAFE to be made urgently available,” he said. Various groups have input that may help further clarify the bill with a focus on a clean initiative. The opposition appears to be continuing the same drug war-era rhetoric that has been refuted by senators along with industry representation. Chaos does not reign when cannabis is legalized, and this is evident to the majority of Americans currently living in cannabis-legal states. Today was an important step as we look forward to the Senate to run, not to march, with the additional steps needed to vote.”
If a bill advances through the committee stage, it will be voted on by the Senate for the first time. The House of Representatives has passed the bill seven times in the four years since it was first introduced. Industry insiders are cautiously optimistic that the bill, which has bipartisan support, will be signed into law this time around.
The Emerald Cup announces honorary awards for 2023
The 19th Annual Emerald Cup Awards takes place this Saturday, May 13, lighting up the Bay Area in celebration of this year’s winners and future tastemakers. The annual event celebrates and recognizes excellence in the cannabis industry, with a special focus on organic and sun-grown cannabis, while honoring the heritage of Northern California’s cannabis culture.
Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award: Milla Jansen
Vision Award: Amber E-Center
Social Justice Award: Weldon Angelos
Trailblazer Award: Alex Aquino
In addition, renowned cannabis breeder Soma, creator of such beloved varieties as NYC Diesel and Amnesia Haze, will be inducted into the Breeder’s Hall of Fame.
The European Union continues to push back on legislation
Europe is seeing a growing wave of calls for the legalization of cannabis, with a growing number of countries aiming to emulate the progressive steps taken by Canada and certain parts of the United States. However, the resistance of the European Union (EU) has led many governments to grapple with the challenge of crafting legislation that is in line with EU laws, international drug treaties, and public health considerations. The sticking point is that commercial legalization of cannabis contravenes international treaties, including the 1961 United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs.
Among the countries leading the reform of cannabis legalization in Europe are reforms Czech Republic, which revealed its commitment to drafting a bill last year, aimed at legalizing cannabis use for adults. This significant move marks the most significant in the country since the decriminalization of personal possession in 2010.
Germany She also joined the ranks by introducing proposals in October to legalize the consumption and sale of hemp, a development that, if approved, would establish the largest regulated national marijuana market in the world.
Luxembourg It took a step forward by passing a law allowing residents to farm for personal use. similarly, Malta He authorized private “cannabis clubs”, while SwitzerlandDespite not being a member of the European Union, it has given approval for a trial period that includes the sale and consumption of the drug in Zurich.
Even the Netherlands, where growing and selling cannabis is still technically criminalized but tolerated, has plans to start a pilot program by the end of this year to explore the legal sale of cannabis.