Author: anthonyj1977

Michigan Bans Vitamin E Acetate in Vaping Products, Should Oregon Follow Suit?

To be perfectly honest, the deaths attributed to cannabis vape cartridges have hit me pretty hard. As someone that has dedicated most of my adult life to ending cannabis prohibition, the fact that any cannabis product has contributed to a death troubles me. Of course, probably all of the 47 deaths and 2,000+ illnesses have been caused by cartridges from the illegal market, but just the fact that the two victims in Oregon shopped at licensed retailers is extremely alarming, even if it hasn’t been proven that the two deaths were in fact caused by licensed products.

While Oregon’s plan to ban flavored vaping products has been temporarily halted by the Oregon Court of Appeals, we certainly haven’t heard the last of proposed regulations. With the additive vitamin e acetate a very likely culprit according to experts, shouldn’t Oregon be seriously considering a ban on the unneeded ingredient? Michigan just announced such a ban, as reported by The Detroit News:

Michigan regulators have temporarily paused the sale of marijuana vaping products as they implement new safety standards spurred by an outbreak of lung injuries. Also, regulators banned on Friday the use of vitamin E acetate, an additive that’s been linked to the injuries, in marijuana vaping products.

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Under the new rules, Michigan is now requiring that all inactive ingredients added to marijuana products be clearly listed on the product label.

“Prohibiting additives that could cause harm to human health is a step forward in efforts to protect the public during this outbreak of lung injury cases,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

I’m thankful for Kind Leaf stepping up to work with processors to ensure that vape cartridges are properly labeled. This type of leadership is just one reason why consumers should support the craft cannabis boutique. Kind Leaf’s CEO and founder, Brandon Krenzler, stated:

“Kind Leaf is asking every single Oregon producer to proactively label all ingredients found within any cannabis product on our shelf. If the product has flavorings, label the each additive individually, if there is MCT oil, label it accordingly, if there is residual butane, it should be labeled.

“It is the right of the consumer to be informed and make concrete purchase decisions, and be confident that all ingredients are transparently listed. This has become a matter of integrity in the cannabis industry to ensure consumer safety by being fully transparent.

“We have the chance to set the tone and move past the contrived corporate mindset that has befallen this country and establish standards that can be used as an example to other industries. We shouldn’t have to have the FDA make requirements. We all purchase food from the store and can appreciate the listing of ingredients, shouldn’t we provide the same peace of mind?”

Speaking for myself, the state needs to step up its testing and labeling procedures and banning vitamin E acetate seems to be a no-brainer. Oregon has done a great job of leading on several cannabis policies, but here’s an example when the Beaver State may want to follow Michigan’s lead on consumer safety protections.

The Gateway Theory Has Been Debunked

As the cannabis legalization debate has moved into the mainstream, with 2/3 of Americans wanting to put an end to prohibition, it is still frustrating to hear those that oppose legalization cite the debunked “Gateway Theory.” There is simply no proof that using cannabis makes you want to move onto other drugs. Unfortunately, the debunked Gateway Theory is something that just won’t die, invading the public debate like a mindless zombie. Thankfully, a strong majority of people see through the nonsense and Reefer Madness propaganda.

From the good folks at the Drug Policy Alliance:

Research simply does not support the theory that marijuana is a “gateway” drug – that is, one whose use results in an increased likelihood of using “more serious” drugs such as cocaine and heroin. However, this flawed gateway effect is one of the principal reasons cited in defense of laws prohibiting the use or possession of marijuana.
Significant amounts of research as well as measures implemented in other countries suggest that there are far more effective and less harmful strategies for decreasing youth use of marijuana and reducing the potential harms of other illicit drug use than using the “gateway” myth as a scare tactic. New evidence suggests that marijuana can even serve as an “exit drug,” helping people to reduce or eliminate their use of more harmful drugs such as opiates or alcohol by easing withdrawal symptoms.
Reefer Madness prohibitionists may discount DPA, so here’s the Institute of Medicine debunking the Gateway Theory as “underage smoking and alcohol use typically precede marijuana use, marijuana is not the most common, and is rarely the first, ‘gateway’ to illicit drug use. There is no conclusive evidence that the drug effects of marijuana are causally linked to the subsequent abuse of other illicit drugs.”
While we are clearly winning the debate of whether to end the failed and harmful policy of cannabis prohibition, it is still irritating to have to deal with debunked theories and stereotypes. For the cannabis community to truly be free, not just legally, but also professionally and socially, it is imperative to share your stories, including whether you and loved ones have decreased the use of more harmful drugs, like opiates and alcohol, thanks to cannabis.

History Made: Cannabis Legalization Bill Passes House Committee

Positive federal cannabis law reforms move forward step by step, person by person, as elected officials and policymakers start to catch up to the will of the voters. It took several tries through Congress to pass a budget provision protecting state-legal cannabis patients and providers from federal prosecution, but now this protection is a common yearly budget rider.

We’re still looking for the U.S. Senate to pass similar legislation for adult-use consumers and retailers, but we’ve passed such a measure through the House, after a couple of attempts; same thing for the SAFE Banking Act that will allow cannabis businesses’ access to banking services. Today, history was made as a bill to deschedule cannabis, the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act, passed the House Judiciary Committee with a bipartisan 24-10 vote.

As usual, Marijuana Moment was on top of the breaking news:

The approved legislation, introduced by Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), would federally deschedule cannabis, expunge the records of those with prior marijuana convictions and impose a five percent tax on sales, revenue from which would be reinvested in communities most impacted by the drug war.

It would also create a pathway for resentencing for those incarcerated for marijuana offenses, as well as protect immigrants from being denied citizenship over cannabis and prevent federal agencies from denying public benefits or security clearance due to its use.

“These steps are long overdue. For far too long we’ve treated marijuana as a criminal justice problem instead of a matter of personal choice and public health,” Nadler said in his opening remarks. “Arresting, prosecuting and incarcerating people at the federal level is unwise and unjust.”

With two-thirds of American adults wanting to put an end to federal prohibition, it is only a matter of time before legalization becomes the law of the land. However, the Reefer Madness prohibitionists in power won’t go down without a fight. We must continue supporting advocates, organizations, and elected officials that are on the right side of history. Most importantly, the cannabis community just needs to keep speaking the truth.

 

Keep Spreading the Truth: Support for Legal Cannabis Is at an All-Time High

After decades of Reefer Madness propaganda and being treated like criminals, the cannabis community has suffered through a stigma that impacts every aspect of life, from criminal prosecutions to family law to employment to personal relationships. Thanks to the hard work of advocates and objective researchers, the lies perpetuated by prohibitionists have slowly but surely been exposed, and the American people are finally realizing the truth about cannabis, that legalization is a better policy than prohibition. The efforts are clearly paying off as a recent Pew Research poll shows that support for legal cannabis has reached an all-time high.

Pew has polled on cannabis legalization since 1969 when only 12% of adults favored ending prohibition and a whopping eighty-four percent supported criminalizing marijuana use. The polling agency reported its latest findings:

Two-thirds of Americans say the use of marijuana should be legal, reflecting a steady increase over the past decade, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. The share of U.S. adults who oppose legalization has fallen from 52% in 2010 to 32% today.

Meanwhile, an overwhelming majority of U.S. adults (91%) say marijuana should be legal either for medical and recreational use (59%) or that it should be legal just for medical use (32%). Fewer than one-in-ten (8%) prefer to keep marijuana illegal in all circumstances, according to the survey, conducted Sept. 3 to 15 on Pew Research Center’s American Trends Panel.

There are many activist heroes over the years. Folks like Jack Herer, Willie Nelson, and Bob Marley will come to mind to many people, while Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, the scientist that first isolated THC, was certainly an influential figure. I’ve long called Oregon’s Elvy Musikka, and her fellow federal medical cannabis patients, prophets of the movement because they revealed the truth about the plant’s medicinal uses. However, we are finally winning the war that has been waged against the nonviolent cannabis community because of ordinary people spreading the truth. Keep spreading the truth and the truth shall set us all free.

 

Kind Leaf Wins LeafLink’s Best Purchase Variety Award

LeafLink today released its second-annual LeafLink List, honoring the standout cannabis brands, products, and retailers on its business-to-business (b2b) e-commerce marketplace, which processes over $1.4 billion per year in wholesale cannabis orders. Kind Leaf Pendleton, Eastern Oregon’s favorite craft boutique, was announced as the winner in the “Best Purchase Variety” category.

Best Purchase Variety highlighted retailers who purchased the greatest variety of unique products available compared to total products purchased in the state. Kind Leaf, with the largest cannabis selection in the great state of Oregon, is now getting national attention for the variety of high-quality products on its shelves. This award follows on the heels of two Kind Leaf budtenders nominated for awards at the 2019 Budtender Awards, with LaRain Miller taking home the Dazed and Infused Award for her knowledge of edibles and terpenes.

LeafLink, which is live in 24 territories across North America, created LeafLink List by analyzing wholesale cannabis orders between over 1,300 industry brands and more than 4,000 retailers from January 1st, 2019 to September 30th, 2019.

We’re excited to continue the tradition of recognizing some of the incredible brands and retailers who are a part of the LeafLink community,” said Ryan G. Smith, LeafLink CEO & Co-Founder. “LeafLink List is not only a celebration of amazing cannabis businesses, but also of the ways in which they are helping push the industry forward as a whole.

“We are so pleased to win LeafLink’s Best Purchase Variety Award because we pride ourselves on meeting the demands and needs of patients and consumers. We understand the variety of preferences and price points that our community deserves,” stated Brandon Krenzler, Kind Leaf’s CEO and Founder. “This acknowledgement only further motivates us to be the best craft cannabis boutique retailer that we can possibly be.”

Adults over the age of 21 can visit Kind Leaf and see the best selection in the state of Oregon, and possibly in the entire United States, at 1733 SW Court Ave, in beautiful Pendleton, Oregon. Check out Leafly for daily deals and remember that patients always receive an additional 15% off.

LLList Winner Kit 

 

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Kind Leaf Responds to the Oregon Court of Appeals Blocking the State’s Ban on Flavored Cannabis Vape Cartridges

With the death toll reaching 42 and more than 2,100 serious illnesses reported, contaminated vape cartridges have rocked the cannabis and vaping industries. After Oregon first confirmed deaths and illnesses in the state, Pendleton’s Kind Leaf took the proactive approach of pulling vape cartridges that contained artificial ingredients, or couldn’t prove all-natural ingredients, off of their shelves.

Opinions may vary and I respect differences of opinions, but I personally applaud Kind Leaf’s decision and am glad that the company’s Director of Operations, Erin Purchase, has been appointed to the state commission looking into the matter. Oregon Governor Kate Brown eventually announced a temporary ban on flavored cannabis vape cartridges, but that directive was just temporarily blocked by the Oregon Court of Appeals. What happens now is anyone’s guess, but we can probably expect the Oregon Legislature to take up the issue and for formal rulemaking to take place next year.

Speaking for myself only, it seems to me that the state should be looking into the additive vitamin E acetate first and foremost since it seems to be a prime suspect. I’m also concerned about any and all non-cannabis additives and think that, at the bare minimum, every ingredient should be labeled so consumers can make informed decisions.

Once again, Kind Leaf is demonstrating real leadership on the this issue and is working with others in the industry to put consumer safety at the forefront. Kind Leaf CEO and founder Brandon Krenzler released the following statement:

We have received clarification from our regulatory agencies on what Vape pens are currently allowed on retail shelves in Oregon, after this stay on the governors blanket ban by the Oregon court of appeals.

After this information, we will begin to work with our vending partners to be provided detailed information about their products and any utilized additives. We will use this information to best make the decision as to whether or not their products are of high enough quality to be on the shelves at Kind Leaf, we are making the request that producers list each individual ingredient on their label.

We will maintain our position of a highest priority to customer care and safety. Many companies have already expressed interest in disclosing their additives on the label.

I sincerely applaud Kind Leaf’s stance on cannabis vape cartridges and hope that processors and others in the industry join them in placing the health of customers, many of whom are sick patients with compromised immune systems, ahead of simply making profits. The cannabis industry still has an opportunity to be different than other industries that have gone completely corporate and place the financial interests of shareholders over the wellbeing of our communities. Kind Leaf is certainly helping lead the way.

 

Spread the Word: Medical Marijuana Patients Get an Additional 15% Off at Kind Leaf

When searching for local cannabis retailers to support, I love to find mom-and-pops and locally-owned stores like Kind Leaf in Pendleton. When you find that the retail outlet also supports medical cannabis patients, then that is an amazing bonus. If you know of any medical marijuana patient anywhere close to Pendleton, Oregon, you should definitely direct them to Kind Leaf, where they will receive an additional 15% off all cannabis products.

Sales Ending Today (November 14th, hurry, Kind Leaf is open until 10pm)

Dab Society Mac Dragon & Hash Fruit Live Resin Sale

Take an extra 30% off Dab Society Hash Fruit & Mac Dragon Live Resin while supplies last! Limit 5 Grams Per Customer

Shadow Box 3 Pack Preroll Sale

WOW! Shadow Box Pink Cooks & Night Walker 3 packs of prerolls are now 30% off! Limit 28 Grams Per Customer

Magic Drop Sale

Take 20% off Magic Drops today! Limit 16 OZ Per Customer

Willamette Valley Alchemy Sah-Moas & The Bizz Sale

Take an extra 25% off WVA Sah-Moas & The Bizz shatter while supplies last! Limit 5 Grams Per Customer

Mule Sugar Blow Out Sale
Take 40% off Mule Infused sugar!
24K Sale!
Take 25% off 24K! A relaxing indica hybrid that’s sure to rock you to sleep. $27 an eighth
Sales Ending on November 17th 
Cookies & Kind Leaf Apparel Sale!
We have a huge selection of Cookies apparel now 30% off and Kind Leaf apparel at 40% off! Hoodies galore! Just in time for the holiday gift season! Hurry, supplies won’t last long!
Vitonic Infused Drink Sale

Take $3.50 off Vitonic Infused drinks all week long! (Limit 16 OZ Per Customer)

With Thanksgiving around the corner and upcoming holiday parties and shopping coming before you know it, stock up this Holiday season at Kind Leaf, an Oregonian-owned mom-and-pop shop that helps its local economy and community. Shop local and #BeKind, good people.

Oregon Senator Ron Wyden Tours Grön Cannabis Confections

The Oregon cannabis industry has created thousands of jobs and generated millions of dollars for the state, including more than $100 million brought in from tax revenue last year alone. Great progress has been made, but much more still needs to be done, so it was great to see Oregon Senator Ron Wyden tour Grön Cannabis Confections, an Oregon-based company that makes both THC and CBD infused chocolates. (Kind Leaf carries Grön, so come on in and get your holiday season started right.)

From the great reporting over at Marijuana Moment:

The senator has long championed both the marijuana and hemp markets and has continued to advocate for regulations that promote growth in those sectors. For example, prior to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) release of an interim final rule for hemp last week, he and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) wrote a letter to the department urging them to expeditiously implement regulations.

When it comes to firms like Grön, “what we have are companies that want to use hemp as a supplement or additive,” Wyden told Portland Business Journal, referring to the need for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to develop regulations for hemp-derived CBD to be used in supplements and food products.

“Mitch McConnell and I have been trying to get the FDA to speed up its timetable. They originally wrote five years or something,” he said. “We need the federal government with respect to the kind of companies that I’ve just been at, to lay out an official policy of enforcement discretion.”

While it is relative, I and other Oregon political activists may quibble a bit in stating that Senator Wyden “has long championed both the marijuana and hemp markets,” he has certainly come around to the right side of history and has become a strong leader for important federal reforms. Wyden has joined his fellow Oregonian in leading the bipartisan effort to allow cannabis businesses access to banking services.

We all need to do our part in helping the cannabis industry succeed, including shopping at local mom and pops. Ensuring that we elect officials that genuinely care about our growing industry and are working to implement important reforms is a crucial element in ensuring that cannabis entrepreneurs, including mom-and-pop shops like Kind Leaf, can survive and thrive in this competitive market.

Support Small Cannabis Businesses this Holiday Season

It is that time of the year to start thinking about holiday shopping, whether it is purchasing presents or preparing for holiday gatherings. Yes, it may be easy to purchase things off of Amazon*, but I urge everyone, including myself, to consider supporting local small businesses as much as possible. In fact, let’s always do our best to support our local communities with our hard-earned dollars year-round, and that goes for the Oregon cannabis community as well. Let’s support remaining mom-and-pop shops like Kind Leaf. By supporting businesses like Kind Leaf, and encouraging friends and families to do the same, you are an economic stimulus for your own local community.

Unfortunately, cannabis legalization has proven to be extremely tough on small businesses. Truthfully, no matter what, the cannabis industry will continue to be difficult for mom-and-pops forever, just as it is in virtually every industry, but the situation is exacerbated by federal prohibition which hinders the ability to access financial services or make a living wage by forcing an exorbitant tax on marijuana retailers. While we must continue to do our part by supporting elected officials that fight for common sense federal reforms, we can have an immediate impact on the lives of Oregonians by ensuring that we support Oregonian-owned retail stores.

Mom-and-pops like Kind Leaf can thrive, as Kind Leaf is proof of that, providing the largest selection of cannabis products in the state, but they need our support. Let’s financially help locally-owned shops instead of sending profits out of state, or out of the country. Oftentimes, these big, corporate interests are fighting for policies that hurt smaller businesses and the freedom of the cannabis community. We’ve seen well-financed companies push their own agenda in Oregon, and in other states, big business interests have even lobbied to prohibit home cultivation. Let’s have the holiday shopping season serve as a reminder to help out our Oregon mom-and-pops, but we should also make it a resolution to support our local community shops year-round.

Sock It to Me Kind Leaf
Kind Leaf has more than just cannabis! Just in time for winter – Portland, Oregon based Sock it to Me socks are in! We have a wide variety of designs to choose from- accent any outfit your heart desires

 

*I am as guilty as anyone about using Amazon, so I just deleted my Amazon Prime account in hopes of practicing what I’m preaching. 

Military Veterans Deserve Access to Cannabis

Medical cannabis has clearly gone mainstream with over 90% support across the nation and a majority of states have now passed medicinal laws. There are several problems with many of these programs, but one of the glaring issues is the fact that too many military veterans lack access to these state programs because of federal law. While some progress has been made at the federal level, unfortunately, Veterans Affairs doctors aren’t allowed to sign off on medical marijuana authorizations.

NORML describes the VA’s current medical cannabis policy:

A policy guidance update issued by the US Department of Veterans Affairs encourages greater communication about cannabis between doctors and veterans, but continues to forbid physicians from explicitly recommending it as a therapeutic option in states where the substance is legal.

The updated directive urges V.A. doctors to foster discussions with veterans about their cannabis use “due to its clinical relevance to patient care.” It also affirms that “veterans must not be denied VHA [Veteran Health Administration] services solely for participating in state-approved marijuana programs.”

However, the updated directive maintains that “providers are prohibited from completing forms or registering veterans for participation in state-approved [medical marijuana] program[s].”

Paul Armentano, deputy director of NORML, writes in The Hill that, “Congress should lift the ban on medical cannabis access for military veterans:”

According to nationwide survey data compiled by the group Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, 75 percent of military veterans “would be interested in using cannabis or cannabinoid products as a treatment option if it were available.”

The American Legion, the nation’s largest wartime veterans service organization, has adopted a resolution urging the “United States government to permit V.A. medical providers to be able to discuss with veterans the use of marijuana for medical purposes and recommend it in those states where medical marijuana laws exist.”

It is time for Congress to grant physicians affiliated with the Department of Veterans Affairs the same discretion as other doctors in medical cannabis states. Politicians should no longer put politics ahead of the health and well-being of America’s military veterans, some of whom may potentially benefit from medical marijuana.

Whether military veterans decide to use cannabis medically or recreationally, they certainly deserve to be free from government persecution for marijuana after serving our nation and sacrificing so much. It’s great that many political leaders are bringing this issue to the forefront, but for the sake of our veterans, let’s do all that we can to help those that have given so much to us.