2011

Canada: Manitoba Fund to Back Plant-Based Bioproducts

By Country Guide staff

Canada: Manitoba Fund to Back Plant-Based Bioproducts Manitoba's provincial government has pledged $20 million over the next 10 years to support development and manufacturing of ag- and forestry-based bioproducts.

The new Manitoba Bio-products Strategy was announced Thursday at Riverton in the province's Interlake region, where a local firm, Erosion Control Blankets, makes erosion-suppression products from wheat straw.

The province's farms and forests yield a "valuable supply" of biomass every year, Premier Greg Selinger said in a release, noting the biomass' use in biofuels, chemical processing and other materials.

"Research and development in Manitoba is already turning hemp, flax and wheat byproducts into paper, insulation, roofing tiles, biodegradable food packaging and ultra-lightweight components for aerospace and transportation sectors," the government said.

Out of the $20 million pledged, the province for 2011 has budgeted "more than $4 million in project funding available to research institutions and entrepreneurs working on developing innovative bio-products," Selinger said.

Illinois: Hemp: Good Stuff, Bad Rap

More people are choosing this balanced food source despite legal potshots

By Alexia Elejalde-Ruiz, Chicago Tribune

United States: Hemp: Good stuff, bad rap Hemp, its advocates say, is nature's perfect food source.

It has omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids, contains 33 percent protein, is a good source of vitamin E and is low in saturated fat. It's an environmentally friendly crop that grows fast and requires few pesticides.

We can't farm it

Hemp is also a controversial food source because of its relationship with its naughty cousin, marijuana. Hemp seeds can contain trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive chemical in marijuana.

While it is legal to import, sell, purchase and consume industrial hemp in the U.S., it is illegal to grow it without a permit from the Drug Enforcement Administration, and it is virtually impossible to get such a permit. The policy stems from the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, when all varieties of cannabis were put into the category of schedule 1 drugs, alongside the likes of heroin.

The DEA tried to ban hemp food consumption in 2001, citing THC concerns. The ban was struck down in court.

But we can use it

Oregon: Living Harvest Sees Growth on Horizon

By Christina Williams, Sustainable Business Oregon

Oregon: Living Harvest Sees Growth on Horizon With more traditional grocers starting to open up to the idea of food made from hemp, Living Harvest Foods Inc. is looking ahead to a year of growth, poised to launch a new ice cream product and start selling products in Safeway aisles this spring.

The 10-employee Portland company, which sells milk, ice cream and nutritional products made from hemp seeds, raised $800,000 from existing investors last year and plans to use it to support its growth to reach profitability.

Hans Fastre, Living Harvest CEO, said that sales in 2010 were essentially flat at about $6 million after several years of strong growth.

"It was okay," Fastre said. "We see it starting to rebound across the whole industry. Whole Foods is reporting better numbers and we usually follow them pretty closely."

Fastre said Living Harvest is starting to get more interest from mainstream supermarkets. He expects Living Harvest products to debut in Safeway in March.


Source: http://sustainablebusinessoregon.com/articles/2011/01/living-harvest-see...

New Jersey: Senate moves towards dissolving Christie's medical marijuana proposal as patients plead for action

By Susan K. Livio, Statehouse Bureau
Video by John Munson, The Star-Ledger

Oregon: Local NORML Chapter Takes On Adopt-a Highway With Pride

"In Oregon it's NORML to care about your community."

By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Correspondent/Oregon NORML Adopt-a-Highway Coordinator

Oregon: Local NORML Chapter Takes On Adopt-a Highway With Pride This past weekend, members of Oregon NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws) and CRRH (Campaign for the Restoration and Regulation of Hemp) worked together to contribute to the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) Adopt-a-Highway community outreach program.

The group has been tackling the 2.5 mile stretch of Oregon Highway 26 in Gresham, from the intersection at Burnside and Powell to Stone Road, for almost three years. In this time, the group of dedicated volunteers has picked up approximately one hundred bags of litter and removed it for proper disposal.

The state recognizes groups who participate in the Adopt-a-Highway cleanup program by giving them a sign with the group’s name displayed marking their designated stretch of road. "Oregon NORML" graces two signs on Highway 26, and the group believes this is just another step in achieving a closer connection to their community.

"I love my community and participation in this type of clean up gives me a chance to give back, not only to the city of Gresham, but also to the thousands of people who travel this stretch of road on their way to and from Mt. Hood every day," explained one group member.

Arizona: : Thousands Comment on State Marijuana Law

By Dave Biscobing, ABC 15

There is a truth that must be heard! PHOENIX - One month has passed since officials began seeking public comment and opinion for Arizona's new medical marijuana law and the state has received thousands of responses.

Kentucky: 2011 Gubernatorial Candidate Gatewood Galbraith Gains Grassroots Momentum With Willie Nelson Endorsement

"Together we can restore Kentucky to prosperity." Gatewood Galbraith/Dea Riley 2011

By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Correspondent

Kentucky: Willie Nelson Endorses 2011 Gubernatorial Candidate Gatewood Galbraith United we stand, divided we fall: Bluegrass State, if you are tired of all the negative political rhetoric taking place in the capitol in Frankfort between both Democrats and Republicans, vote Gatewood/Riley in 2011!

Willie Nelson, creator and spokesperson of the newly formed Tea Pot Party, officially announced the group’s first endorsement for a U.S. political race: Independent candidates Gatewood Galbraith and Dea Riley for Governor and Lt. Governor of Kentucky. It is a move sure to shake up the status quo and the Galbraith/Riley ticket would be a fresh beginning for a state aiming to achieve greater economic results. Currently Kentucky’s unemployment rate is at an all time high, their poverty ranking has increasing from 15.4 to 17.3 percent over the past eight years under both a Republican and Democrat administration, marking them as the fifth poorest state in our nation.

"I am a longtime friend of Gatewood Galbraith. We crossed Kentucky in a car that ran on hemp fuel one time when he ran for governor. I think the teapot party should back him this time. He is a good man and will do a good job," proclaimed Nelson.

Medical Marijuana: Colorado Supreme Court Rejects Petition Challenging MMJ Laws

By Michael Roberts, Westword

There is a truth that must be heard! That was fast. Last week, MMJ advocates represented by attorney Andrew Reid petitioned the Colorado Supreme Court to rule on the constitutionality of the state's medical marijuana laws.

But the Supremes have already rejected this bid, forcing Reid and his clients to take a much slower path through lower courts in order to advance their challenge.

"We're deeply disappointed the Supreme Court didn't take the case, but it's not unexpected," Reid says. "We understand that the court takes very few of these. But we'll do what we have to do to bring it back to the court."

The petition and its supporting material, on view in their entirety below, argues that the marijuana regulatory measures signed by Governor Bill Ritter in June impinge on patient access to medication and their right to privacy in violation of Amendment 20, which legalized MMJ in Colorado. The petitioners are led by Kathleen Chippi, former owner of One Brown Mouse/Cannabis Healing Arts, who announced in July that she wouldn't sign Colorado's medical marijuana license agreement. She described the document at the time as "downright evil."

Washington: Sen. Kohl-Welles Introduces Medical Marijuana Reform Legislation

By Thea Chard, My Ballard

Washington: Sen. Kohl-Welles Introduces Medical Marijuana Reform Legislation On Tuesday 36th District Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, along with Rep. Jim Moeller of Vancouver and bi-partisan support, introduced new legislation to clarify and provide a strong legal framework for Washington’s existing medical marijuana laws.

The bill, according to Kohl-Welles, reflects the tenth iteration since she first released it last February, incorporating input from patients, providers, advocates, health professionals, government officials, legislators, and law enforcement representatives.

The resulting legislation, Senate Bill 5073 and House Bill 1100 if made into law, would establish a regulatory system for the sale and purchase of medical marijuana to qualified patients.

Colorado: Medical Marijuana Advocates Call For Full Legalization

By Steve Elliott, Toke of the Town/Special to Hemp News

Colorado: Medical Marijuana Advocates Call For Full Legalization Medical marijuana advocates Wednesday evening called for the full legalization of marijuana in Colorado, saying that until cannabis is fully legal, it will always be stigmatized and patients will be subject to harassment.

"No patient is really safe until it is legalized for everyone," attorney Robert J. Corry told the patients and advocates at a meeting in Denver, reports Scot Kersgaard at The Colorado Independent.

Corry and other attorneys said law enforcement officials, lawmakers and other officials will never really act as if anyone has a right to use marijuana until it is made legal for all.

"They are treating patients like criminals instead of the sick people we are," said Laura Kriho of the Cannabis Therapy Institute.

Advocates said patient access is in jeopardy in Colorado because of rules that allow cities and counties to ban dispensaries, and because of patient fears that their medical marijuana records are not really confidential.

One attorney in particular brought the house down with her personal story of using medical marijuana.

Longmont lawyer Kristy Martinez described herself as a serious and successful attorney until one day a few years ago when her health took precedence over her law practice.

Montana: House Speaker Looks To Repeal Medical Marijuana Law

By Stephanie Barish, NBC Montana

There is a truth that must be heard! HELENA, Mont. -- Republicans and Democrats aren't seeing eye to eye on the Medical marijuana law. Speaker of the House, Mike Milburn, wants the law to go up in smoke.

"It's pretty much opening the door to legalize marijuana is what this has done," Milburn told NBC Montana. "So, we have many issues on that on driving while using it, working and going to school."

Milburn is sponsoring a bill that would repeal the controversial law. He says it's allowing the drug to become too easily accessible.

"Voters did vote for the initiative but it wasn't for what happened...and that's where I'm going to listen to what they're saying and what they're telling me is that the consequences of what's happening is way outweighing any benefits," said Milburn.

But representative Diane Sands begs to differ.

"The fact of the matter is the majority of the people want it fixed they don't want it repealed," she said.

She says the law has helped people and should just be adjusted to eliminate "gray" areas.

"A system for the issuing of licenses and a regulatory process for all the growers, the producers and the sellers. That has to happen," said Sands.

Logan Head, manager of Zoo Mountain, a place that sells medical marijuana, agrees.

Illinois: Medical Marijuana Bill Defeated by 4 Votes in House

By MyFox Chicago Staff

There is a truth that must be heard! Chicago - Lawmakers in Springfield turned down a bill that would have legalized medical marijuana Thursday.

Fifteen states and Washington, D.C. currently allow marijuana to be allowed for medical use, but in Illinois, that won't be happening anytime soon.

The bill was sponsored by State Rep. Lou Lang from Skokie. It was narrowly defeated by four votes in the House Thursday.

Supporters of the bill say it would have provided much relief for people suffering from AIDS or other chronic diseases to help them with pain relief and help them regain an appetite, which would also make them feel better.


Source: http://www.myfoxchicago.com/dpp/news/politics/medical-marijuana-legislat...

2011: Cannabis Resolutions in the New Year

By Stephanie Bishop, Hemp News Correspondent

Oregon: Donate to End Cannabis Prohibition

More than 10 million Americans have been arrested for marijuana violations since 1965, ruining countless lives and breaking up families as a result. For what good purpose?

The National Rifle Association (NRA), Right To Life, Christian Coalition, and gay rights movements, especially in their infancies, were considered wild and crazy fringe groups with no chance of gaining significant political support.

What made these groups so much more effective politically is that they were funded with the mother's milk of politics; not just by membership fees, but by large contributions from private sources, plus countless small donations that gave their efforts additional strength.

Invariably, the private sources who funded such groups used their influence to place the most effective people in strategic places where they gave their causes a respectable face. Such increased funding also naturally tended to relegate the wild and crazy element to the background, where they were less able to distort the decision making process.

In your opinion, what is the best benefit from the hemp and cannabis plant?

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