California has the oldest medical marijuana program in the US and this is the state that voted to legalize medical marijuana in the year 1996. Also, California is home to the largest medical marijuana industry in America and following this one thing that everyone anticipated was a medical marijuana sales tax. The same has been finally introduced in the state which is expected to result in a 15% sales tax. As per reports, California would levy a 15 percent tax on all the medical marijuana sales in order to enforce new regulations and pay for state programs along with rehabilitation and parks under. All this has been implemented under a bill introduced by the concerned authorities.
Australian authorities are seeking to legalize the cultivation of medicinal cannabis in order to supply the local patients in need of the green drug. The nation even aims at successfully creating an export industry to have a strong foot hold in the booming global demand for the drug to treat chronic pain and many other problems. No wonder, Australia is already one of the world’s biggest exporters of the raw ingredients for painkillers. The initiative is followed by the similar moves by concerned authorities in Canada and over 23 US states, four of which have already also legalized the recreational use of cannabis. As per a recent report, the legal sales of medical and recreational marijuana in US alone were estimated at US$2.7bn in 2014.
In the United States the year 2016 can be an important one for medical marijuana – a herb that has been the issue of much debate and controversy since 1996.
The federal government is not in a hurry to alter its long stand opinion on the drug but President Obama has stayed neutral on the issue. He has indeed opined that the best way to get Congress to take action is through the continually legalize marijuana throughout the United States. California has medical approval for marijuana and according to legal experts, the five states that may get this approval next are Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina and Ohio.
A study conducted by the researchers at Cornell University and San Diego State University got their study – The Effect of Medical Marijuana Laws on body Weight – published in the latest issue of Health Economics. According to it, medical marijuana law induced increases in physical mobility could be relatively important. And it makes sense because medical cannabis is used to treat chronic pain, and in turn, reduced pain results in improved mobility.
The findings of study show that the enforcement of medical cannabis laws is linked to 3.1% reduction in the probability of alcohol consumption and 4.8% reduction in probability of binge drinking. In case of younger individuals, the study points to this group to substitute alcohol with marijuana – this will reduce the high caloric intake that comes with drinking.
The newly elected Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau has promised to act quickly on the countrywide legalization of marijuana for general (including recreational) purposes. This will make Canada the first G-20 country to end marijuana prohibition on a national scale.
The anticipated legalization has been made possible by the fact that medical cannabis is legal in Canada for some ailments since 2001. Having laid the groundwork to grow, process and sell the drug for medicinal uses for quite some time, the country will transit smoothly to nationwide legalization even for recreational marijuana.
Over 90 per cent of South Australians have voted in favour of legalization of marijuana for medicinal purposes in a recent survey conducted by a popular research institute. The Federal Government is believed to gearing up to allow growth of commercial medicinal cannabis crops. This is being excessively supported to favour the introduction of cannabis-based medicines which can be legally prescribed to patients with some serious illnesses. Not surprisingly, majority of the supporters are aged over 50 years as this group is most susceptible to many reifies that only medicinal marijuana can provide. The NSW Government is soon preparing to run a thread of medical marijuana clinical trials for patients with serious illnesses.
As per many recent reports, the soft laws on medical marijuana consumption in Canada have already started drawing American investment north and the early trends are expected to further fuel it. This is likely to get much better once the federal Liberals make best on their promise to allow recreational and medical use of the drug by patients. Most of the investors believe that Canada is on the top of their interest so that they can participate in the growth of medical cannabis sector in the country. The basic reason why American institutional investors are looking for investing in Canadian cannabis market is that they want to avoid sinking their money into companies that could be shut down by U.S. federal authorities.
Recent studies have shown that legalization of marijuana in more provinces of Canada can help the weed to become an industry bigger than forestry. Besides creating record number of jobs, the legalization can bring in new tax revenue streams amounting to billions. Coupled with this, due to legal availability of marijuana, there will be reduced judicial costs for the overburdened judiciary of the country.
In the US, the state of Colorado has proposed some new rules that would cut down on the number of pesticides permitted for growing marijuana crops. They will be reduced to 75 from 200. The ones that will be allowed are least detrimental and already allowed by federal regulators for use on common food and tobacco crops. This proposal was issued in the last week of September 2015, according to the Denver Post.
Many of Canada’s medical cannabis producers are ready to release marijuana oils for patients who are permitted to use the weed but not comfortable with smoking or taking it in vaporized form to relieve their symptoms. It was in July that Health Canada gave cultivators the permission to start producing the plant-based extracts. Around 12 of the country’s 25 medicinal marijuana growers sought expanded licences to cultivate and market cannabis oils and/or fresh marijuana buds and leaves under the new federal regulations. The names from Ontario include Tweed and Bedrocan Canada Inc., and B.C.’s Tilray.