In this week’s cannabis news round-up, a new Gallup poll confirms half of US adults have tried cannabis; Federal Appeals Court rules federal gun ban for cannabis users unconstitutional; newly revealed email confirms DEA’s position on delta-8 THC from CBD; Germany’s cabinet approves draft legalization proposal; Cann takes Roadie to 31 more states; and Edwin Eats An Edible Kickstarter campaign goes live.
As the wave of cannabis legalization continues to sweep across the US, a recent Gallup poll has revealed a significant shift in cannabis consumption. According to the findings, a record-breaking 50% of Americans have experimented with cannabis at some point. While this marks only a modest uptick from 2022, it is a statistically significant surge from 2019’s figure of 45%.
The poll also found that more Americans are actively engaging with cannabis than with tobacco cigarettes, indicating that around 17% of American adults currently use cannabis, while only 11% are cigarette smokers.
A federal appeals court has ruled that the long-standing federal prohibition on cannabis users possessing firearms is unconstitutional. Based in New Orleans, the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals concluded that the 1968 law prohibiting firearm possession or sale to an “unlawful user” of a federally controlled substance should not be interpreted so broadly as criminalizing all gun owners with a history of cannabis use.
The case involved an individual sentenced to four years in prison after firearms and remains of a joint were found in his vehicle. Despite admitting occasional cannabis use, there was no evidence to suggest he was under the influence at the time of his arrest.
The court stated, “While our history may support limits on an intoxicated person’s right to carry a weapon, it does not justify disarming a sober citizen solely based on past drug use.”
This decision follows similar rulings by other federal courts, including one in Oklahoma and another in Texas, affirming that using cannabis does not warrant stripping an individual of their right to possess a firearm. A separate legal challenge, initiated by former Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried and medical marijuana patients, is still pending in the US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. Congress has also introduced bills seeking to remove federal firearms-related restrictions on cannabis consumers.
A letter from the US Drug Enforcement Administration’s Drug & Chemical Evaluation Section Chief Terrence Boos, dated 2021, has confirmed that the DEA views delta-8 THC, produced from CBD synthesis, as federally unlawful. While not new information, the explanation is presented in simple terms, dispelling any lingering uncertainties regarding DEA’s regulations: when derived from legal CBD, the DEA categorizes delta-8 THC as a banned controlled substance.
Attorney Shane Pennington shared the revelation via his “On Drugs” Substack page, “Arriving at delta-8-THC by a chemical reaction starting from CBD makes the delta-8-THC synthetic and therefore, not exempted by the [Agriculture Improvement Act]. Any quantity of delta-8-THC obtained by chemical means is a controlled substance.”
The Agriculture Improvement Act, also known as the 2018 Farm Bill, granted states the authority to establish their own hemp programs, leading to the emergence of companies selling hemp-derived cannabinoids. Some have taken it further by synthesizing these non-intoxicating compounds into more potent ones like delta-8 or delta-9 THC.
Germany has taken a significant step towards modernizing its cannabis policy. The nation’s federal cabinet has given the green light to a draft legalization measure, marking the first phase of this transformative effort spearheaded by Health Minister Karl Lauterbach. The proposal is now going to the Bundestag, the country’s legislative body, for further evaluation.
The proposed measure aims to legalize personal cultivation, possession and consumption of cannabis for adults in Germany. The plan also entails the establishment of non-commercial cannabis clubs, which would distribute cannabis to their members. However, certain limitations would apply, including purchasing caps, designated ‘buffer zones,’ restrictions on club numbers per jurisdiction and a maximum membership limit of 500 individuals per club. The next phase of Germany’s cannabis policy reform will involve the implementation of regional cannabis pilot initiatives.
Cann, the leading cannabis beverage brand, has expanded its Roadie product to 31 new states. Initially available only in California, these convenient drink sachets are perfect for on-the-go consumption. With no powders, it’s as easy as tear, pour and mix into any drink.
Roadie comes in Cann’s three core flavors: Grapefruit Rosemary, Blood Orange Cardamom and Lemon Lavender. Each Roadie sachet delivers a perfectly balanced and social experience thanks to a balanced 2mg of THC and 4mg of CBD.
Meet Edwin and his friends as they introduce a range of diverse ways they live their lives with plant medicine. The new book by 69&Sunny, Edwin Eats An Edible is an alphabet-style illustrated journey that celebrates the wonders of cannabis for adults—is now live. Launched this week and running until September 14, the Kickstarter campaign aims to secure the necessary funds for the completion and fall publication of the book.
This innovative project is brought to life by 69&Sunny, a Philadelphia-based arts collective founded by real-life cannabis-focused couple Calan and Bryce, who’s personal health journey and exploration of cannabis medicine inspired them to educate the local community through art.
The book features an introduction by Dr. Rachel Knox, an endocannabinologist and cannabis medicine specialist. With a blend of humor and curiosity, the initiative aligns with 69&Sunny’s mission to create inclusive spaces for learning and growth.