Friday, October 22Urban Hippie

Author: Nicole Potter

USPS Bans Nicotine and Cannabis Devices from Being Shipped Through Mail

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The United States Postal Service (USPS) released the details of its final rule on the shipment of nicotine devices, which also includes cannabis vape devices, immediately prohibiting them from being shipped through USPS mail services. The USPS announced on October 20 that starting today, it will no longer allow the shipment of nicotine vape pens, which also applies to vape pens that contain hemp, CBD or cannabis. This final ruling is a verdict that has been a work in progress since earlier this year. The USPS announced in April 2021 that it was seeking to alter its rules to prevent the shipment of vape pens, in conjunction with a congressional bill provision passed in December 2020. The goal of the bill, referred to as the Preventing Online Sales of E-Cigarettes to Children Act (POSECCA...

Bank of America Closes Cannabis Research Account

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One of the nation’s most popularly used banks decided to close the account of one of the country’s DEA-approved cannabis and psychedelic research institutions. The Bank of America suddenly closed the accounts of the Scottsdale Research Institute with very little notice or explanation last week. The Scottsdale Research Institution received a letter dated October 12, stating that the account would no longer be accessible in 21 days and fully closed within 30 days. The letter also states that the “this decision is final and won’t be reconsidered.” Dr. Sue Sisley, a prominent, longtime researcher of medical cannabis (specifically for its efficacy as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder) is the President and Principal Investigator at the Scottsdale Research Institute. She posted

U.S. Department of Agriculture Mails Out First Ever Hemp Survey

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has begun mailing out surveys today to all of the nation’s hemp producers, with the hope that their comments will help the agency collect data about operations and production. The USDA’s first hemp survey, entitled the “Hemp Acreage and Production Survey,” was mailed out on October 18. It’s the first time that the agency has tried to collect data about hemp harvests. “The Hemp Acreage and Production Survey collects information on the acreage, yield, production, price, and value of hemp in the United States,” said the USDA’s National Agriculture Statistics Service (NASS). “The Domestic Hemp Production Program established in the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (2018 Farm Bill) allows for the cultivation of hemp under certain conditions. Th

Leading the Charge: Stephanie Arakel aka Cakes, Vice President of Strategy and Product at Viola Brands

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It’s no secret that if you’re working in the cannabis industry, you need to be on top of everything coming your way. One woman who’s dominating her role in the industry is Vice President of Strategy and Product at Viola Brands, Stephanie Arakel, affectionately known across the industry as Cakes. Arakel’s journey into cannabis grew organically starting with her culinary college career, to a few post-college cannabis enterprises after recovering from cancer, which eventually lead to the current position she now holds at Viola Brands. Highly successful and tenacious, Arakel manages various happenings behind the scenes at Viola Brands. Aside from the daily management requirements of those markets, Arakel was also given the responsibility of choosing the first strain to be a part of the

NBA Won’t Randomly Test Athletes for Cannabis During 75th Season

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The National Basketball Association (NBA) recently released a memo stating that it won’t be testing its athletes for cannabis for the entirety of the upcoming season. The NBA Spokesman Mike Bass announced on October 6 that cannabis testing athletes will not occur for the rest of the association’s 75th season, which begins on October 19 and runs through May 2022.  “We have agreed with the NBPA to extend the suspension of random testing for marijuana for the 2021-22 season and focus our random testing program on performance-enhancing products and drugs of abuse,” Bass stated. NBA players were given a memo about the news, but ESPN was the first to obtain the memo and report the information, as of a statement from ESPN Senior NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski.  “Players won’t be subje

Report Shows Decreased Percentage of Women and Minority Executives in Cannabis Industry

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MJBizDaily released a report on October 4 called “Women & Minorities in the Cannabis Industry,” which reviews new statistics about female and people of color executives and business owners in the cannabis industry. According to MJBizDaily’s findings, the percentage of women and minorities in executive level positions in the cannabis industry have dropped between 2019-2021. The national average of women who hold executive positions in the industry throughout the country is 29.8 percent, but over the past two years, women in those positions in the cannabis industry has fallen to 22.1 percent. In 2019, approximately 36.8 percent of executive positions in cannabis were held by women. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that the percentage of women in higher level positions

New Frontier Data Predict Global Cannabis Sales to Hit $51 billion by 2025

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A recent report from New Frontier Data explores the rapid growth of both medical and recreational cannabis sales in its “Global Cannabis Report: Growth & Trends Through 2025” report. The report is a comprehensive look at what to expect in the global cannabis industry over the next few years, while analyzing the current and future trends in the global markets of North America, Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean, Oceania, Asia and Africa. New Frontier Data Founder, Publisher and Executive Chair Giadha A. DeCarcer, shared in her Letter from the Publisher at the beginning of the report that this industry will only continue to grow and expand.  “When we released our first Global Cannabis Industry Report in 2019, it was clear that cannabis legalization would prove to be one of the mo

City of Denver Releases Annual Report on Local Cannabis Industry

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Officials in the city of Denver released its annual cannabis industry report, which covers a wealth of information about most recent data and its comparison to previous years. A report called “The Denver Collaborative Approach,” conducted by the city of Denver, Colorado, was released on September 20. This report has been consistently published every year since 2015, one year after recreational legalization was implemented. The report covers a wide variety of industry facts and figures, including cannabis taxes, sales and revenue, noteworthy accomplishments and more. “As legalization spreads across the United States, Denver remains squarely in focus. More than ever, the city is looked at to provide guidance on how it effectively implemented and continues to manage the first-of-its-kin

Former Massachusetts Mayor Sentenced for Extortion

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A former mayor of a city in Massachusetts was charged with extorting prospective cannabis business owners, among other charges, and sentenced to numerous years in prison. Jasiel F. Correia II, former mayor of Fall River, Massachusetts, first took on the role at 23 years of age in 2016. During his time as mayor, he allegedly committed numerous acts of greed and corruption. Federal Judge Douglas Woodlock announced his ruling on September 21, assigning Correia to six years in prison and three additional years of supervised release. The 29-year-old was initially convicted of his crime in May 2021 on “nine counts of wire fraud, four counts of filing false tax returns, four counts of extortion conspiracy and four counts of extortion,” according to an official press release from the United

Amazon Releases Update on Company Drug Testing Policies

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Amazon released a new statement elaborating on its decision to remove drug testing as a condition of pre-employment, as well as its support of certain cannabis-related legislation. In a blog post on September 21, Amazon Senior Vice President of Human Resources Beth Galetti wrote about the company’s ongoing plan to support  legaliation. In the update, Galetti revealed Amazon’s dedication to cannabis, including reinstating “employment eligibility for former employees and applicants who were previously terminated or deferred during random or pre-employment marijuana screenings.”  Furthermore, Galetti elaborates on this decision with three realizations. First, in the wake of rapid legalization sweeping the country, it has become “difficult to implement an equitable, consistent and nation