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The Picks and Shovels of Cannabis Legalization?

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In recent years, the landscape of both cannabis consumption and food delivery has undergone a significant transformation. With the increasing legalization and normalization of cannabis use, coupled with the rise of delivery apps, a notable trend has emerged. This is the undeniable correlation between cannabis consumption and the surge in orders for fast food through delivery platforms.

The Cannabis Culture

Once associated with stigma and legal restrictions, cannabis has undergone a remarkable shift in public perception. The legalization of recreational and medicinal cannabis in various regions has paved the way for its acceptance and integration into mainstream culture. Today, cannabis is not merely a substance; it represents a lifestyle and a community. The rise of cannabis influencers, events, and dedicated social spaces underscores its burgeoning cultural significance.

Cannabis Usage Statistics

According to the polling organization Gallup, about half (50%) of American citizens have tried the drug marijuana at some point in their lives, which, by the way, is a record-breaking marijuana popularity. Meanwhile, almost one out of every six people in the nation (17%) report that they now “smoke marijuana,” citing Gallup’s historical data as the highest on record.

According to a 2023 research conducted by Harris Poll for MedMen, half (37%) of US women aged 21 and over choose to indulge in cannabis consumption. The survey revealed the majority of women use cannabis as a therapeutic measure; nearly two-thirds (60%) admit it for anxiety busters, half (58%) for insomnia alleviation, and more than half (53%) for pain relief.

Interestingly, a large mention of female marijuana users tries to keep the use of their commodity a secret, with numbers estimated at 65% of them notifying their relatives and friends, such as parents, children, and colleagues, of their marijuana use.

The legalization of cannabis is now prevalent across most of the United States, as indicated by Pew Research. More specifically:

  • 54% of American folk live in the States, where recreational marijuana use is legalized.

  • Only 74% of USA residents live in the regions where both recreational and medical marijuana is legal.

  • With about 79% of Americans living in counties that house at least one dispensary and nearly 15,000 dispensaries across the country, exposure to this phenomenon is dramatic.

California remains the top state with the maximum number of dispensaries. At the time of the analysis, 3,659 of them were double the number of the following ranking states.

Recent findings have shown that around 60% of the marijuana dispensaries in America are located in California, with just one dispensary not being within 60 miles of each Californian (99.5%). Based on figures in Los Angeles County, the dispensary alone can account for the total number of stores available.

Pre-rolling has quickly become the product group of the moment, coming second to Flowers and Vapor Pens on the popularity chart of the states. Their reach has experienced a massive uptick ever since the beginning of 2022. The Headset report shows that US pre-roll sales went 13.4% higher from January to August 2023 compared to the numbers in 2022.

However, the industry showed the most considerable growth compared to concentrates and edibles. In addition, pre-roll shares of overall sales soared by 32% from January 2022, helping them hold 15.3% of total sales in the US.

According to Headset, which processes industry data, Gen Z and Millennials together contributed 62.8% of US recreational cannabis sales and 70.8% of Vape Pen sales. The young Generation Z, who have grown comfortable with vaporizers, would like to shift their cannabis habits, which could be responsible for the lower number of teenagers using Vape Pens.

CivicScience has conducted an in-depth study that established that 21% of individuals who partake in Dry January (a trend where members quit alcohol for a month) use marijuana and CBD products as alternatives. This survey responded to the fact that a majority of people who swapped alcohol with cannabis were those whose ages ranged between 21 and 24 (34%), followed by people aged 25-34 (24%).

These findings implicate that it is the young people who are the growing demographic who now fancy taking up cannabis over their traditional alcohol choice. This trend has been witnessed since the onset of the pandemic.

Increased Cannabis Use Boosting Demand For Delivery Apps

According to a recent study conducted by Numerator, the daily consumption of marijuana is significantly influencing consumer spending habits. The research, based on nearly 6,000 cannabis users, reveals that these individuals are increasing their purchases of frozen food and relying more heavily on delivery apps such as DoorDash. Uber Eats compared to the average consumer. Notably, a popular choice among them for delivery is Little Caesars pizza.

The study indicates that consumers who use marijuana with psychoactive THC tend to be younger and have lower incomes. Around two-thirds of them use marijuana a few times per week, with 38% reporting daily use. They allocate more of their grocery budget to snacks and beverages, particularly sports and energy drinks, beer, frozen sandwiches, spirits, pizza, and appetizers.

Numerator’s press release highlights that daily THC users show even more pronounced preferences across various product categories. Notable differences include increased candy consumption, herbs & spices, frozen potato snacks, and packaged sweet snacks.

The impact of cannabis use on alcohol consumption appears mixed, with more frequent marijuana users spending less on alcohol compared to infrequent users. Surprisingly, over a third of THC users claim to have reduced their alcohol consumption since starting to use cannabis. However, they still outpace non-users in alcohol purchases overall.

The rise in demand for delivery services and fast food is evident, with THC users showing a greater likelihood of patronizing limited-service restaurants and using food delivery apps in the preceding three months. DoorDash, Uber Eats, and Little Caesars emerge as some of the most frequented options.

The study also contrasts CBD users, who typically skew older and have higher incomes, often seeking to manage health issues with the non-psychoactive compound of marijuana known for its relaxing properties.

 

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The 3 Biggest Winners from Rescheduling Cannabis?

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President Joe Biden’s support of the administration’s decision to reschedule cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule III is likely to result in considerable financial benefits for large, legal cannabis businesses and the illicit market. This action may lessen the restrictions imposed by IRS tax regulation 280E, which has banned cannabis businesses from deducting standard business expenditures. Which cannabis firms will gain the most from this change?

 

The illicit market will get a huge boost by removing the punshiments associated with getting caught dealing or transporting a Schedule 1 drug.  Now that the fines, prison sentences, and desire to enforce Schedule 3 crimes is lessened, look for the illicit market to boom across America.  It is estimated that the illegal cannabis market is 3x the size of the legal US market as of 2024, so look for that multiple to expand if Schedule 3 is enacted.  Removing a negative incentive in economics always leads to predictable action.

 

In the legal market, the largest MSOS, or those that paid the most taxes, have the most to gain by a repeal of the 280E tax code and future tax credit or refunds coming their way

 

Industry Leaders in Tax Payments

 

Rescheduling cannabis will abolish the onerous 280E tax law, potentially freeing up more than a billion dollars in tax savings for the business. Curaleaf (OTC: CURLF) and Trulieve (OTC: TCNNF), both of which make considerable tax payments, are among the firms most likely to profit. Repealing 280E limits would allow these businesses to deduct typical business costs, greatly improving their financial situation.

Truelive alone stands to get $113,000,000 in tax refunds and savings!

Senior analyst Pablo Zuanic of Zuanic & Associates believes that these tax reductions may result in improved cash flows, allowing these businesses to reinvest in development and growth. In the quickly changing cannabis market, having this kind of financial flexibility is essential for keeping a competitive advantage and encouraging creativity.

 

Zuanic has consistently highlighted the disparity between current market valuations and the potential upside, particularly if federal legalization occurs. He emphasizes that immediate cash flow improvements could lead to substantial revaluation of these companies. By enabling the deduction of ordinary business expenses, the financial statements of these companies would more accurately reflect their true profitability, attracting more investors and boosting market confidence.

 

The potential tax savings are a temporary relief and a game-changer for the industry. Analysts believe that the improved cash flow could result in substantial revaluations of cannabis companies. For Curaleaf and Trulieve, this change would mean their financial statements would better represent their actual profitability, leading to increased investments and further expansion opportunities.

 

Curaleaf’s Financial Outlook

 

Beacon Securities’ Russell Stanley sheds light on Curaleaf’s financial landscape, highlighting the company’s adept management of operating cash flow. This proficiency facilitated a successful debt repurchase post-quarter, significantly enhancing its financial stability. With the anticipated rescheduling of cannabis and the potential enactment of the SAFER Banking Act, Curaleaf stands to benefit from a transformed financial environment, potentially witnessing a substantial surge in its operating cash flow by up to 92% and free cash flow by 188%.

 

Wedbush Securities recently released a report on Curaleaf, elevating the stock’s 12-month price target from $6.00 to $7.00 while maintaining a buy recommendation. The report underscores Curaleaf’s commendable performance in key domestic markets like Connecticut, Arizona, Maryland, and New York. Projections indicate a revenue uptick to $1.50 billion by 2025, coupled with improvements in overall profitability. This optimistic forecast reflects the company’s robust financial position and its strategic market presence.

 

Proactive debt management techniques and well-thought-out market positioning highlight Curaleaf’s potential for long-term development and financial success in the changing cannabis industry. Curaleaf is in a strong position to benefit from the rescheduling of banking and cannabis legislation, which may lower regulatory obstacles and further establish the company’s leadership in the cannabis market.

 

Unlocking Trulieve’s Growth Potential

 

Trulieve’s Growth Trajectory

 

Trulieve’s growth trajectory is drawing attention, particularly from Needham’s Matt McGinley, who emphasizes the company’s operational efficiency. McGinley points out that Trulieve has achieved its highest gross margin and EBITDA rates observed in over two years, indicating strong operational performance. This efficiency positions Trulieve favorably for capitalizing on emerging opportunities in the cannabis market.

 

Key legislative advancements in pivotal markets such as Florida and Pennsylvania present significant growth potential for Trulieve. As these markets potentially transition to adult-use cannabis, Trulieve stands to benefit from increased demand and expanded market reach. Leveraging its operational efficiency and established market presence, Trulieve is poised to capitalize on these legislative shifts to drive revenue growth and enhance shareholder value.

 

Trulieve is positioned to be a major participant in the growth of the cannabis sector due to its strategic focus on operational excellence and its flexibility in responding to changing regulatory environments. Trulieve is in an excellent position to maintain its growth trajectory and establish itself as a top cannabis supplier, thanks to encouraging legislative changes and a proven track record of high performance.

 

Analysts’ Industry Impact Assessment

 

Viridian Capital Advisors offers insights into the industry impact, noting that ten MSOs exceeded EBITDA estimates by $37 million in the first quarter of 2024. This performance suggests that initial projections may have been conservative, indicating a positive trend for cannabis companies. Analysts from Viridian specifically highlight Curaleaf and Trulieve, among others, as poised to benefit from the financial changes resulting from the removal of 280E tax restrictions.

 

The long-term outlook for the cannabis industry remains bullish, with potential federal legalization driving substantial valuation growth. Pablo Zuanic from Zuanic & Associates suggests that the US market alone could justify over $110 billion in valuations by 2030 assuming federal legalization. The removal of tax restrictions would directly impact bottom lines, potentially leading to significant valuation increases for many cannabis stocks.

 

All things considered, the possible repeal of the 280E tax laws offers cannabis businesses a big chance to improve their financial standing and market value. As analysts speculate that early projections may have overestimated the sector’s potential, businesses like Curaleaf and Trulieve might gain from more cash flow and better profitability, setting them up for long-term success in the changing cannabis market environment.

 

Bottom Line

 

The impending rescheduling of cannabis and the potential repeal of IRS tax regulation 280E offer a substantial opportunity for cannabis companies to strengthen their financial positions and market appeal. Industry leaders such as Curaleaf and Trulieve stand to benefit significantly, with projected increases in cash flow and profitability paving the way for sustained growth. Analysts anticipate a positive market response, with potential valuation growth and a bullish outlook for the long-term trajectory of the cannabis industry. These regulatory changes mark a pivotal moment, allowing businesses to capitalize on newfound financial flexibility and attract investor confidence. As the sector continues to evolve, Curaleaf, Trulieve, and other key players are positioned to thrive, driving innovation and shaping the future of the cannabis market.

 

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How Potent is Illegal Weed

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The average THC potency of illegal weed is only 16%, same as legal cannabis says DEA?

In the ever-changing landscape of cannabis, a striking revelation has come from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). A recent statement established that the average potency of illicit marijuana flower stands at a industry standard of 16%. Understanding the implications of such a percentage requires a deeper dive into the realm of cannabinoids, particularly THC (tetrahydrocannabinol).

 

 The Evolution of THC Potency

THC is the main psychoactive compound in marijuana, responsible for the “high” that users experience. The potency of marijuana, measured by its THC content, has dramatically increased over the past few decades. To understand the context:

 

  • 1980s:The average THC content of seized marijuana was below 4%.

  • 1990s: This figure began to climb, reaching around 5-6%.

  • 2000s: Potency continued to increase, hitting approximately 10-12%.

  • 2020s: Current reports indicate an average of 16%, with some samples even exceeding 30%.

 

This increase is primarily due to advanced cultivation techniques, genetic selection, and the growing demand for stronger marijuana.

 

Factors Contributing to Increased THC Potency

Several factors have contributed to the rising THC levels in illicit marijuana:

 

  • Selective Breeding: Growers have increasingly focused on breeding strains with higher THC content to meet market demand.

  • Advanced Cultivation Techniques: Techniques such as hydroponics, controlled environments, and optimized nutrient delivery have enabled the production of more potent marijuana.

  • Genetic Modification: Some strains have been genetically modified to enhance THC production.

 

Public Health Implications

 

The rise in THC potency has several significant public health implications:

  • Increased Risk of Negative Effects

  • Heightened Anxiety and Paranoia: Elevated THC levels can induce intense anxiety and paranoia, especially in inexperienced users or individuals with existing mental health issues.

  • Acute Psychosis: The likelihood of encountering psychotic episodes rises significantly with higher doses of THC.

  • Cognitive Decline: Prolonged use of marijuana with high THC content can result in enduring cognitive impairments, particularly impacting memory and learning abilities.

 

 

  • Adolescents: Young users are more susceptible to the negative effects of high-THC marijuana, including impacts on brain development.

  • Individuals with Mental Health Issues: Those with pre-existing mental health conditions may experience exacerbated symptoms.

 

  Regulatory and Law Enforcement Challenges

The DEA’s report underscores significant obstacles faced by law enforcement and regulatory agencies:

  • Persistent Black Market: Despite legalization in several states, the black market for marijuana persists, often offering more potent products than those available in legal dispensaries.

  • Ensuring Consumer Safety: The unregulated nature of black market products results in unpredictable potency and potential contamination with harmful substances.

 

To address these issues, regulatory bodies need to:

 

  • Implement Stricter Controls: Introduce more stringent regulations for marijuana potency in both legal and illegal markets.

  • Increase Monitoring and Enforcement: Enhance efforts to monitor and dismantle illegal growing operations.

  • Educating Consumers: Consumer education is crucial in mitigating the risks associated with high-THC marijuana

  • Public Awareness Campaigns: Launch campaigns to inform the public about the potential dangers of high-THC marijuana.

  • Educational Programs: Develop programs targeted at specific groups, such as adolescents, to educate them about the risks.

 

Key points to emphasize in these programs include:

 

  • Understanding THC Levels: Educate consumers on how to read and understand THC levels on product labels.

  • Recognizing Symptoms of Overconsumption: Teach users how to recognize signs of overconsumption and what to do if they experience adverse effects.

  • Safe Consumption Practices: Promote safe consumption practices, including starting with low doses and waiting to see the effects before consuming more.

 Future Trends and Research

Ongoing research and monitoring are essential to adapt to the evolving marijuana market:

  • Long-term Health Effects: Conduct studies to understand the long-term health effects of high-THC marijuana use.

  • Impact on Mental Health: Investigate the relationship between high-THC marijuana use and mental health conditions.

  • Comparative Studies: Compare the effects of high-THC marijuana with other forms, such as CBD-dominant strains, to provide a comprehensive understanding of marijuana’s impact.

Potential Solutions and Innovations

To address the challenges posed by high-THC marijuana, several solutions and innovations can be explored:

  • Development of Low-THC Strains: Encourage the development and use of low-THC, high-CBD strains that provide therapeutic benefits without strong psychoactive effects.

  • Improved Testing Methods: Invest in better testing methods to accurately measure THC content and detect contaminants.

  • Policy Reform: Advocate for policy reforms that support research and responsible use, including:

  • Incentives for Low-THC Products: Provide incentives for the production and sale of low-THC products.

  • Support for Medical Marijuana Research: Increase funding and support for research into the medical uses of marijuana.

Industrial and Economic Implications

The rise in THC potency also has significant industrial and economic implications:

 

The marijuana industry has become a significant economic driver in states where it is legal, contributing to tax revenues and job creation.

However, the black market remains a substantial challenge:

  • Revenue Losses: Illegal sales undermine tax revenues that could be used for public health and safety programs.

  • Market Competition: Legal businesses face unfair competition from black market operators who do not adhere to regulatory standards.

Engaging Stakeholders and Community

A critical aspect of addressing the challenges associated with high-THC marijuana is engaging with and gaining the support of local communities, policymakers, and industry leaders. The Ohio company has launched outreach programs to educate stakeholders about the benefits of bioplastics and the specific advantages of using hemp as a raw material.

Community involvement is crucial, especially in providing local farmers with the tools and knowledge needed to transition to hemp cultivation. Through:

 

  • Training Sessions

  • Pilot Programs

The company aims to build a robust local supply chain that can sustainably support large-scale bioplastic production.

 Conclusion

In conclusion, the DEA’s report on the average THC potency of illicit marijuana flower reaching 16% highlights the significant changes in the marijuana landscape over recent decades. This increase poses new challenges for public health, regulation, and consumer safety. Addressing these challenges requires a multi-faceted approach involving education, regulatory reforms, technological advancements, and community engagement. By fostering a comprehensive understanding of the risks and benefits associated with high-THC marijuana, stakeholders can work together to ensure that the benefits of marijuana legalization are maximized while minimizing potential harms. This approach promises a healthier, safer future for all users and communities involved.

 

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Is Your Kid Smoking or Vaping Weed?

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Marijuana for recreational and medicinal purposes is becoming more widely available and simpler to purchase every day. Furthermore, opinions about the drug’s possible risks have changed as a result of recent legislative modifications, especially among young teenagers.

 

While proper use of marijuana can offer health benefits for specific conditions, inappropriate use can lead to a variety of problems. It can severely impact health, situational judgment, memory, coordination, and more.

 

Given that marijuana has rapidly become a much more commonly used drug among young people, it is crucial to recognize the main signs of marijuana use in teens to ensure their safety and well-being.

 

Statistics on Child Marijuana Use

 

Though the stats may surprise you, marijuana is the most often used narcotic among teenagers. Among children between the ages of 12 and 17, the National Center for Drug Abuse reports that:

 

– Nearly 44% have tried marijuana in their lifetime, up from 37% in 2019.

– 35% used marijuana in the past year.

– Almost 7% of 12th graders use marijuana daily.

 

Regretfully, eighth, ninth, and tenth kids are exposed to an alarmingly high level of marijuana. Early usage is problematic since those who start using earlier have a greater likelihood of heavier use later in life.

 

How THC Impacts the Brain

 

The active element in cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which produces the “high” associated with marijuana. THC can be ingested by smoking cannabis flowers, vaping concentrated forms, or eating THC-infused foods. THC impacts the brain by interfering with processes that are typically controlled by naturally existing endocannabinoids.

 

The brain grows from birth to the mid-twenties, and consuming marijuana at a young age can interrupt this important development. Early marijuana usage appears to influence brain development, according to recent research.

 

The effects of cannabis on the brain are extensive:

 

– Executive Functioning: Skills necessary for daily life, such as focus, memory, problem-solving, planning, reasoning, and emotional control, are compromised.

– Working Memory: The ability to remember and later recall or use information is reduced.

– Lingering Effects: The impact of cannabis use can last well beyond the period of intoxication. Even if someone smokes on a weekend, the effects can persist into the following week. Regular use leads to a persistent decline in executive functioning, working memory, and other cognitive areas.

 

Cannabis use interferes with the brain’s circuits, and it remains uncertain whether the brain can fully recover if marijuana use is discontinued.

 

Signs Your Child is Using Cannabis

 

Recognizing if your child is using marijuana can involve noticing various signs, including:

 

– Hair or clothes with a pungent marijuana smell

– Red or bloodshot eyes

– Delayed reaction times

– Mood swings

– Laziness and tiredness

– Presence of marijuana-related paraphernalia

– Paranoia or anxiousness

– Increased hunger or “munchies”

 

Visible Signs of Marijuana Use

 

Shortly after usage, marijuana’s effects can be perceived both visually and aromatically. It is very suggestive of marijuana usage if your adolescent returns home with red or bloodshot eyes. Physical and mental delays in response times and problems with muscular coordination are further symptoms.

 

Cannabis has a unique fragrance that is another warning clue; it is frequently characterized as having a pungent, musky smell like that of a skunk. On your teen’s clothes, this odor might cling rather readily.

 

Changes in Emotional State

 

The body and mind might react differently to different strains or varieties of marijuana. Teenage marijuana usage is frequently indicated by mood swings, lethargy, and general exhaustion in their day-to-day demeanor. Depending on how their body responds, they might also seem nervous and exhibit an elevated heart rate.

 

Your youngster may struggle to focus at job, school, or home as a result of these changes, which frequently results in subpar performance and grades. This decrease might be a clear indication that marijuana use has turned into an addiction.

 

Educating Your Child about Marijuana

 

Regardless of whether you suspect your child is using cannabis, it’s important to discuss it. Parents and caregivers should talk about all types of dangerous substances, including nicotine, alcohol, and cannabis, with children as early as elementary school.

 

It’s important to be proactive and talk to your youngster about the risks associated with marijuana. These talks may serve to deter marijuana usage or at the very least postpone the initial experience until the mid-20s, when the brain is more completely matured.

 

As teenagers become older, their need for independence grows, which makes it harder for parents to control their actions. Still, parents need to persevere. It is significantly more dangerous to consume cannabis than it is uncomfortable to have a difficult talk.

 

Addressing Marijuana Use and Seeking Help

 

For teenagers’ wellbeing, it is essential to identify and treat marijuana usage. It’s crucial to handle the matter with compassion and support if you think your child may be consuming marijuana. Discussing its usage, the rationale behind it, and any possible hazards should come first in an honest and nonjudgmental discussion. Give your child access to a secure environment where they may talk about their thoughts and experiences. You can gain insight into their viewpoint and advice on how to make better decisions by having this discussion.

 

If using marijuana has become troublesome, you might think about getting professional assistance. Resources like therapists, counselors, and specialty treatment programs can provide your kid with the help they need. These specialists are qualified to deal with underlying problems including stress, peer pressure, or mental health disorders that may be causing drug use. Early intervention can stop the usage from getting worse and support your kid in creating healthy coping mechanisms. Getting a medical expert involved can also offer a methodical way to handle the matter and guarantee that your adolescent gets the treatment they need.

 

It is critical to be involved and supportive throughout the process. Encourage your kid to participate in activities that support their well-being and offer positive reinforcement for good habits. Stay educated about the services available in your area, and consider joining support groups for parents struggling with similar challenges. You can assist your child in navigating this difficult period and promote a healthy, drug-free future by keeping open communication and obtaining expert support as required.

 

Bottom Line

 

Parents need to be vigilant about the signs of marijuana use in their children, given its prevalence among teenagers and its potential impact on their health and development. Early detection, open communication, and seeking professional help if needed are key strategies for addressing marijuana use in adolescents. By providing support, education, and access to resources, parents can help guide their children towards healthier choices and a drug-free future.

 

HOW TO HAVE “THE TALK” WITH YOUR KIDS, READ ON..

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