News:

Yesterday, the Department of Justice and Drug Enforcement Administration announced that Epidiolex, the newly approved medication by the Food & Drug Administration, is being placed in Schedule V of the Controlled Substances Act, the least restrictive schedule of the CSA. The FDA announced in June that it approved Epidiolex for the treatment of seizures associated with two rare and severe forms of epilepsy, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome, in patients two years of age and older. Epidiolex contains cannabidiol (CBD), a chemical constituent of the cannabis plant. The CBD in Epidiolex is extracted from the cannabis plant and is the first FDA-approved drug to contain a purified extract from the plant. Marijuana and CBD derived from marijuana remain against the law, except for the limited circumstances that it has been determined there is a medically approved benefit via approval by the FDA. In those instances, the drug will be made appropriately available to the public for medical use. See more here: https://www.dea.gov/press-releases/2018/09/27/fda-approved-drug-epidiolex-placed-schedule-v-controlled-substance-act

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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has warned the public to be vigilant when investing in marijuana companies due to the increasing prevalence of investment fraud and market manipulation, adding that the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy regularly receives complaints about marijuana-related investments. Regulators stated that investments offering a guaranteed high rate of return with little or no risk should be treated with suspicion. Other cautionary warnings included unsolicited offers made either through email, social media or over the phone. The SEC advised investors to conduct thorough background checks of anyone recommending marijuana investments, including their registration and license status, previous trading suspensions, and companies that have underwent abrupt changes in their name, business plan or industry. Investors were also reminded of the legal status of marijuana in U.S. and the risk of criminal prosecution as marijuana is technically still illegal in the U.S.    See more here: https://www.investopedia.com/news/sec-issues-warning-about-hot-marijuana-investments/

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Yesterday,  the House/Senate Conference Committee for the 2018 Farm Bill  sat down for the first time to try to hash out the differences between the two versions of the bill, with the hopes of passage by September 30, 2018, when the 2014 Farm Bill expires. Under the Controlled Substance Act, hemp is currently listed under Schedule I, a federally controlled substance, in the same legal category as heroin and LSD. The bill would not legalize marijuana for recreational or medical uses, but would remove hemp from the Controlled Substances Act legalizing the plant federally and allowing it to be cultivated, processed, and sold as an agricultural product. Individual states would be authorized to draft their own hemp regulations without fear of the DEA’s interference. Hemp is commonly used in clothing, food, lotion, beauty products, and most recently popularized for its uses in products made with cannabidiol (CBD), a cannabinoid that can be extracted from cannabis in both its marijuana and hemp forms. If the 2018 Farm bull passes, it would include the legalization of the hemp derived version of CBD. If passed, the 2018 Farm Bill would remove restrictions and allow farmers to grow hemp domestically without the fear of violating the law. Proponents of the legalization of marijuana still have a ways to go, but the legalization of hemp would certainly be a step in the right direction.

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