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Gov. Hochul names New York State cannabis advisory board members – Cannabis Business Executive

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Cannabis Packaging In New York Is About To Get A Grown-Up Makeover

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Historically, cannabis packages have evoked a playful and colorful vibe. But now thanks to newly approved regulations in New York, the nascent industry’s regulated products will have a more subdued look.

Gothamist reports that this past Wednesday the state’s Cannabis Control Board voted to approve a variety of regulations that would limit cannabis product packaging, all with the purpose of protecting people under the age of 21.

The approved regulations would ban the use of cartoon characters, bubble letters, candy references, or bright colors in cannabis packaging, anything that might appeal to young users. Claims of marijuana products being “organic” or “safe” would also be illegal. When it comes to cannabis ads, words like “weed,” stoner,” and more, won’t be allowed.

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Photo by Kindel Media via Pexels

RELATED: FDA Warns About THC Copycat Edibles, Children In Serious Danger

Aside from these rules, cannabis products would also have to comply with a variety of regulations that have been enforced in other legal states, like childproof packaging and cannabis ads keeping a 500 feet distance from schools, libraries, playgrounds, and child centers.

Children having access to cannabis products has been a growing concern for the industry, with more and more kids gaining access to these products and ending up in emergency rooms. The increase in these numbers has resulted in brands suing cannabis companies and the FDA mailing out cease and desist letters to a variety of cannabis businesses.

RELATED: Why Can’t Parents Keep Marijuana Away From Small Children?

While protecting children from cannabis is important and something that must be taken seriously, it seems like New York State is working hard to deliver a sanitized cannabis experience. No matter whether the packaging has cartoons on it or not, studies have demonstrated that legalization doesn’t encourage cannabis use in teens. The problem lies in what parents do once the product gets home.



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New York Cannabis Board Declares Marijuana Gifting Illegal

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By Nina Zdinjak

Some seven months after former Governor Andrew Cuomo signed recreational marijuana into law, New York cannabis regulators are still figuring out which rules and guidelines are needed to make this complex program function properly.

Just last week, the Cannabis Control Board proclaimed marijuana gifting to be illegal, writes WSKG.

Tremaine Wright, former state assemblymember who leads the regulatory body for the state’s cannabis industry, addressed the increasingly popular cannabis gifting activity. “There is no gray market in New York state,” he said. “This conduct is not legal and must stop. Individuals who do not cease run the risk of severe financial penalties.”

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Wright, however, failed to provide more details regarding the penalties though she explained that marijuana from unlicensed and unregulated sources is not tested or confirmed as safe.

HempSol CBD Gets The Ball Rolling

In September, the Rochester-based HempSol CBD hit the headlines for giving away an eighth of an ounce of cannabis with the purchase of a $65 T-shirt. At the time, the shop owner said the promotional “gift” was legal under the state’s adult-use cannabis law, which allows for adults to gift each other up to three ounces of marijuana.

RELATED: New York’s First Cannabis Control Board Meeting Is On The Books!

HempSol’s idea seemed to have inspired others to do the same, with cannabis “gifting” becoming more common. Meanwhile, Jim Mackenzie, HempSol CBD owner, revealed he is looking for legal assistance and refused to comment on the situation.

Consumer Safety As Top Priority

Jason Klimek, who co-leads law firm Barclay Damon’s cannabis team, said he had his doubts around the idea of promotional pot gifting for a while now. According to him, the new remarks from the head of the state’s Cannabis Control Board should be enough to clear up any confusion around what is legal and what is not.

RELATED: Medical Flower Now Allowed In New York

Klimek added that this should have been expected, considering that the state is obliged to put consumer safety first. He recalled the 2019 vaping crisis when 68 people died after using THC vape cartridges that contained vitamin E acetate.

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Photo by Dmitry_Tishchenko/Getty Images

The attorney added that now that the cannabis board has provided a clear stance, it is more likely that law enforcement will act upon cannabis gifting.

“Perhaps law enforcement is more likely to engage at this point, and if they were to do that, they would probably go after a sort of bigger operator to set an example,” Klimek said.

In the end, Klimek advised all businesses practicing promotional cannabis gifting to stop.

This article originally appeared on Benzinga and has been reposted with permission.



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New York Regulators Move To Let Medical Cannabis Patients Grow Their Own Cannabis

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By Nicolas Jose Rodriguez

On Thursday, New York’s Cannabis Control Board (CCB) voted to file a regulation that would allow certified patients to cultivate up to six cannabis plants for their own therapeutic use.

According to the Marijuana Regulation & Taxation Act (MRTA) passed in 2021, home cultivation of medical cannabis is allowed for patients 21 years and older in the state’s Medical Cannabis Program.

Emerald Triangle: Does The Best Weed In The World Really Grow There?
Photo by Olena Ruban/Getty Images

Likewise, designated caregivers caring for patients under 21 years of age (or incapable of cultivating for themselves), may cultivate on behalf of the patient.

Landlords retain the option of prohibiting tenants from growing on their properties.

After a 60-day public comment period starting from when the rules are published, the board will review comments, make any necessary revisions and officially file the regulations to take effect.

RELATED: Medical Flower Now Allowed In New York

According to Tremaine Wright, who chairs the CCB, “The home cultivation of medical cannabis will provide certified patients with a cost-effective means of obtaining cannabis through personal cultivation,” reported Marijuana Moment.

Expungement

At the Thursday afternoon meeting, the Office of Cannabis Management provided an update on efforts to expunge cannabis records.

There have been 45 expungements for cases related to marijuana possession so far, wrote Marijuana Moment, though most remain “under custody or supervision for additional crimes.”

A slide presentation at the meeting showed that “Approximately 203,000 marijuana related charges are presently being suppressed from background searches and in process to be sealed or expunged,” the slides read. “This will add to the approximately 198,000 sealing accomplished as part of the first round of marijuana expungements for the 2019 expungement legislation.”

This article originally appeared on Benzinga and has been reposted with permission.



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