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Twitter to allow ads for cannabis, THC products in United States For Adults



MJ Biz reports

(This story was first posted at 12:27 a.m. ET Wednesday and updated with more details at 10:48 a.m. ET.)

In a major policy shift, Twitter is allowing “approved” and state-legal cannabis companies and other advertisers to post ads in the U.S. for regulated THC and CBD products, accessories and services, the social media platform has disclosed.

“We permit approved Cannabis (including CBD– cannabinoids) advertisers to target the United States” provided a slew of conditions are met, Twitter said on its website under the heading, “Drugs and drug paraphernalia.”

AdCann, a cannabis marketing and advertising website based in Toronto, first reported the development in a social media post.

AdCann noted that, “effective immediately,” Twitter will permit “advertisers to promote brand preference and informational cannabis-related content” for certain products and services, including:

  • CBD and similar cannabinoid products.
  • THC and similar products.
  • Cannabis-related products and services, including delivery services, labs, events and more.

“American cannabis companies, brands and purveyors will need to pass through a Twitter advertiser approval process to ensure they are legitimate and educated on the platform,” AdCann reported.

“Once approved, industry marketers will have access to Twitter’s entire suite of advertising products including promoted tweets, promoted product opportunities, location-specific takeovers, in-stream video sponsorships and partner publication features.”

Cannabis industry executives welcomed the news.

“This has been in the works behind the scenes for a while,” Patrick Rea, the managing director at San Francisco-based venture capital firm Poseidon Garden Ventures, said in a tweet Tuesday night.

“Cannabis is a leading topic on @Twitter and should be a big channel for #cannabis advertising, depending on the details of the program. #progress,”

Rosie Mattio, CEO of Mattio Communications, a cannabis-focused marketing and communications firm in New York City, tweeted: “Kudos to @twitter for being the first major social network to welcome Cannabis advertisements.”

Under its new guidelines, Twitter said that cannabis advertisers – presumably companies – will be subject to a variety of restrictions and conditions:

  • “Advertisers must be licensed by the appropriate authorities, and pre-authorized by Twitter.
  • “Advertisers may only target jurisdictions in which they are licensed to promote these products or services online.
  • “Advertisers may not promote or offer the sale of Cannabis (including CBD– cannabinoids). Exception: Ads for topical (non-ingestible) hemp-derived CBD topical products containing equal to or less than the 0.3% THC government-set threshold.
  • “Advertisers are responsible for complying with all applicable laws, rules, regulations, and advertising guidelines.
  • “Advertisers may not target customers under the age of 21.”

The sudden change in policy comes after billionaire Elon Musk completed his purchase of Twitter last October, buying the social media service for $44 billion.

Musk is well known for having smoked marijuana on Joe Rogan’s podcast in 2018.

Insider later reported that Musk – the CEO of space company SpaceX – was afterward ordered by the U.S. government to undergo random drug testing for a year.

SpaceX does considerable business with the federal government.

Musk’s purchase of Twitter immediately fanned speculation that the billionaire would loosen Twitter’s strict advertising policy governing marijuana.

“Up until now, only CBD topical brands were permitted to advertise on Twitter’s platform,” AdCann noted in its social media post.

“Moving forward – the social network will allow for the promotion of regulated THC and CBD-containing cannabis products, accessories, services and more.”

In its new guidelines, Twitter made clear it would not allow advertising directed toward minors.

The company also laid out several other restrictions, saying cannabis ads must:

  • “Not appeal to minors in the creative, and landing pages must be age gated and sales must be age verified.
  • “Not use characters, sports-persons, celebrities, or images/icons appealing to minors.
  • “Not use minors or pregnant women as models in advertising.
  • “Not make claims of efficacy or health benefits.
  • “Not make false/misleading claims.
  • “Not show depiction of cannabis product use.
  • “Not depict people using or under the influence.
  • “Not encourage transport across state lines.”

Twitter’s move comes on the heels of January announcement that Google Ads will no longer ban all hemp and CBD advertising in California, Colorado and Puerto Rico.

However, there will continue to be limitations to marketers, Google added in its blog post.

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NY: Leafly Sort of Get What They Want




The New York Attorney General’s Office last week agreed to a stay in cannabis technology company Leafly’s legal challenge to the state’s third-party marketing ban. The stay effectively blocks the state from enforcing the prohibition on Leafly, but not other third-party marketers.  

In a statement, Yoko Miyashita, CEO of Leafly, said that while the firm is “very pleased” with the decision, the company remains “concerned that the Office of Cannabis Management’s stance towards third-party platforms deprives consumers and licensed cannabis retailers with important tools that help them navigate legal cannabis.”  

“We’ll continue to work toward sensible regulations and are hopeful for a solution that empowers small businesses and supports consumer education and choice, while still protecting the public health, safety, and welfare of the people of New York.” — Miyashita in a press release 

The order does not end the lawsuit, which alleges that state regulators unfairly targeted third-party platforms in a misguided attempt to restrict the way retailers may market or promote their business and products and prevent price-shopping consumer behaviors. The lawsuit alleges, that the adoption of these regulations by the state is both arbitrary and capricious and a violation of the U.S. and New York constitutions. 


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“Sham Unions”: Alleged Labor Law Violations Shake California’s Booming Cannabis Industry 




Several major legal cannabis companies in California are facing allegations of violating state law by collaborating with and signing labor peace agreements with organizations claiming to be labor unions but who have failed to genuinely advocate for workers’ rights. According to California law, cannabis companies with over 20 employees are required to sign a labor peace agreement with a “bona fide labor organization”. These labor peace agreements facilitate a union’s access to employees. Labor peace agreements prevent unions from picketing or boycotting the business in exchange for the business agreeing not to disrupt union organizing efforts. However, several unions are alleging some of the largest cannabis companies in the state have attempted to skirt this law by signing labor peace agreements with an organization known as Professional Technical Union Local 33 (Pro-Tech).

The Teamsters Union filed a complaint with the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board (CALRB) in March of this year, alleging that Pro-Tech was not a genuine labor organization. After conducting an investigation, the CALRB agreed with the Teamsters, finding that Pro-Tech has made no tangible efforts to organize or represent cannabis industry employees and even lacks a physical presence in the state.

At least 90 cannabis companies, including some of the largest in California, are alleged to have signed labor peace agreements with Pro-Tech and have recently had to scramble to make agreements with other labor unions. The implicated firms were provided with 180 days to establish new labor peace agreements by the California Department of Cannabis Control (CCDC).

Pro-Tech is not the only labor organization to face scrutiny. Another union, the National Agricultural Workers Union, has also recently faced similar allegations of being a “sham union” from the Teamsters.

California’s cannabis industry is significant, employing over 83,000 people in 2021. The CCDC has stated that it is working to enhance transparency regarding labor peace agreements to strengthen labor organizations’ ability to file complaints against non-compliant companies.

This news highlights the importance of having an experienced attorney review labor peace agreements that are required by CCDC. It is important to remember that the details of these agreements are subject to negotiation, and the difference between an enforceable agreement and a one-sided agreement that allows a union to engage in unfair or harassing organizational tactics can be easily overlooked. 


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Proposal to abolish medical cannabis tax fails to become Canadian Conservative Party policy




A proposal to consider the abolition of tax on cannabis for medical purposes did not have a chance to become official party policy at the Conservative Party convention over the weekend.

The proposal would have called on the Conservative Party of Canada to adopt a policy that would “abolish the excise tax on medical cannabis, fostering compassionate patient care and promoting its potential as a ‘Made in Canada’ safer alternative to addictive opioids.”

Policy 1849 had passed the first stage of voting and was then heard as a regional priority from New Brunswick in a breakout session on Friday. However, the proposal did not make it past that stage. Had it passed, it would have had a chance to proceed to the convention floor for a final vote on Saturday, September 9.

Tanner Stewart, who helped bring the proposal forward, says he is disappointed the proposal didn’t make it to the floor, but feels it was still a worthwhile effort to spread awareness of the issue. Stewart is the founder of Stewart Farms, a cannabis producer in St. Stephen, New Brunswick.


Proposal to abolish medical cannabis tax fails to become Conservative Party policy

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