Across the Cannabis Divide - A bill that might have outlawed edible marijuana in Colorado was pulled for revisions Thursday

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sat, 02/12/2011 - 02:39.

Cannabis bakers at Taste My Yummees booth at KushCom2 - yummy brownies
Cannabis bakers at Taste My Yummees booth at KushCom2 - yummy brownies

February 11, 2010 - The Colorado Independent reported "Colorado edible marijuana bill not a brownie killer - Bill expected back in March, but probably won't ban most ingestibles".

This is good news for mom and pop Colorado businesses that have invested to develop the cannabis economy in Colorado. Pro-medical marijuana organizations like the Cannabis Therapy Institute had warned “House Bill 11-1250 will outlaw all medicinal cannabis edible products in the state, overturning the licensing scheme for Infused Products Manufacturers that was created by the state legislature last year.” 

This is even more important news for MMJ patients, who seek a variety of products containing MMJ in treatment of their medical conditions.

"Prior to the bill being pulled for revision, Shan Moore, the father of a teenager who uses medical marijuana to control seizures, told The Colorado Independent that his son relies on ingestible medical marijuana to control his condition. Due to other health issue and also due to the fact that his son does not want to get high, smoking is out of the question for him."

Leading up to the pulling of this bill for revisions, FirstNews5 voiced cannabis entrepreneurs' concern - "William Prince, with Discreet Treats, makes marijuana edibles and sells them to dispensaries. He says the passing of 1250 would be big trouble for him, and he's hearing concern from others in the business. "It really gets my attention," says Prince. "I mean this could take us right out of business; by a stroke of a pen we're done.""

Rather, the Independent reports: "According to Kara Miller, an independent lobbyist contracted with MMIG (The Medical Marijuana Industry Group), both she and Acree (bill sponsor Rep. Cindy Acree, R-Aurora) worked to ensure the bill better suited Acree’s intention, which never was to eliminate consumable medical-marijuana products in the state. Miller said Acree simply wanted to ensure medical marijuana was treated as a medicine to avoid children thinking it to be a candy."

As illustrated in the photo above, Representative Acree has a legitimate concern, as the yellow and pink candies contain marijuana extract, yet certainly do not look like medicine. They were properly packaged as medicine, and it is the patient's responsibility to keep them out of the reach of children (like with all medicine). The soap pictured above contains hemp oil, but not medical marijuana, showing how blurred the lines of product design and packaging may become.

In my coverage of KushCon II, for realNEO, I reported on the explosive growth of cannabis commerce in Colorado: "December 17 - 19, 2010, the Colorado Convention Center hosted the world's largest marijuana lifestyles convention TO-DATE - KushCon2 - offering those active in the legal global marijuana industries a place to meet, collaborate, learn and grow their new-economy enterprises, together. In one convention hall, in one weekend, mingled 10,000s of cannabis entrepreneurs and their stakeholders - nurturing $ billions in new GREEN, taxable economic opportunity for America - and their truly Green Revolution is just taking off."

Fisheye view of KushCon2 Marijuana Industry Convention in Denver, Colorado, December 17-19, 2010
Fisheye view of KushCon2 Marijuana Industry Convention in Denver, Colorado, December 17-19, 2010

It is unlikely Colorado legislators want to kill-off all that entrepreneurship, small business activity, job creation, innovation, natural healthcare, government fees and taxes that have come from legalizing medical marijuana there, but changing rules and legislation are risks faced by early adopters in this industry, in any state that has legalized medical marijuana... especially as there are developments at the Federal level to legalize some aspects of cannabis commerce, as well.

As reported on realNEO: U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration officials are making plans to reschedule natural THC as a Schedule III controlled substance..."if a pharmaceutical product contains THC extracted from the marijuana plant, that would be a legal commodity".

Is the Federal government in the process of "industrializing" medical marijuana for a few big pharmaceutical companies and corrupt legislators, like the government corrupts so much it touches? Will small businesses be squeezed out of business, hurting the economy further?

We will never know, sitting on the sidelines.

Those in the cannabis industry now get to participate in deciding how the cannabis economy will develop in the future - fight it out first hand. Those across the cannabis divide from legally participating in this industry - like in Ohio - MUST sit on the sidelines and watch the $ billions fly. It doesn't seem fair, no matter how things turn out, to be forced to sit on the sidelines in impoverished Ohio watching wealth created elsewhere.

To help Ohio businesses enter the cannabis economy, I've formed a virtual incubator we call Grohio Colorado, which is helping Cleveland-area businesses to join the Green Revolution, where and as legal. Our first collaborative product headed to market is a medical marijuana infused "Bar B Q Sauce", based on Cleveland's award winning Hot Sauce Williams Bar B Q Sauce, for production and sale in Colorado... announced to great global excitement last week, on realNEO and in the Cleveland Plain Dealer - "Pot Sauce Williams, aiming to be the Heinz of medical marijuana BBQ sauces."

Greg and LeMaud Williams on the deck at the Inner Circle with a customer - a Hot Sauce Williams enterprise

And Cleveland's Greg Williams, of Hot Sauce Williams, may become the Heinz of tomorrow, in the cannabis industry, as the rules are still being written today.

Greg is getting into the cannabis economy in Colorado just in time to help shape its future there and globally. By having a product in the marketplace in Colorado, and becoming an early innovator in the industry, Greg stands to thrive and survive as the industry evolves - goes national and global - and he is best positioned to take a role as an industrial player, as things go "industrial", as he is at the table now, as the industry is first being defined.

While it appears Colorado will not outlaw infused products in the future... if they did, even just 4-5 months in the industry in Colorado would be worth the effort and investment, to develop the relationships, networks, and practical experience that will allow Pot Sauce Williams to grow national market in the long run. I am confident competitive early adopters in this industry may remain at the table through the end, nationally and worldwide.

Making it so important for the State of Ohio to get into the cannabis industry now - in 2011 - and do it the best in the world... the Brightest and Greenest.

To see the cannabis industry growing pains from the sidelines, read the Colorado Independent below - to participate in the cannabis industry as the game is just kicking-off, cross the cannabis divide and join Grohio Colorado - norm [at] realneo [dot] us.

Colorado edible marijuana bill not a brownie killer

Bill expected back in March, but probably won't ban most ingestibles
By Joseph Boven | 02.11.11 | 5:32 am

A bill that might have outlawed edible marijuana in Colorado was pulled for revisions Thursday before it came before committee. HB 1250′s very presence on the docket spurred an immediate backlash from the medical marijuana community.

The Medical Marijuana Industry Group (MMIG) said last night that well before emails scorched a trail of fear across the internet Thursday, bill sponsor Rep. Cindy Acree, R-Aurora, had already indicated her bill was not a pot brownie killer. Instead, Edible medical marijuana is safe in Colorado according to lobbyists who say they were working with the legislator early Thursday morning before HB 1250, titled “concerning a prohibition on ingestible marijuana-infused products,” had the chance to get to committee.

An email blast went out Thursday morning from the Cannabis Therapy Institute that stated:

“Denver — House Bill 11-1250 was introduced on Wed., Feb. 9, 2011. This bill will outlaw all medicinal cannabis edible products in the state, overturning the licensing scheme for Infused Products Manufacturers that was created by the state legislature last year.”

According to Kara Miller, an independent lobbyist contracted with MMIG, both she and Acree worked to ensure the bill better suited Acree’s intention, which never was to eliminate consumable medical-marijuana products in the state. Miller said Acree simply wanted to ensure medical marijuana was treated as a medicine to avoid children thinking it to be a candy.

For example, she said that Acree wanted to nip marijuana infused soda pops, like one in California, from entering the state.

“What she is trying to get after is a California beverage coming in,” Miller said. “If something looks like soda pop [kids] are likely to drink it. It needs to look like medicine. She wants that amendment.”

While draft amendments have not been written, Miller said that Acree had so far agreed to three conceptual changes.

“She is okay with edibles, because she doesn’t like people smoking either,” according to Miller. “They have to all be manufactured in Colorado to keep us out of interstate commerce problems, they have to be marketed as medicine, they have to be marked with the patients ID number so that if kid gets a hold of it, it is the patient’s problem.”

She said that fines and loss of medical marijuana cards were being discussed as possible penalties for non-compliance.

Sen. Scott Renfroe, R-Greeley, the Senate sponsor of HB 1250, did not immediately respond to phone calls.

Prior to the bill being pulled for revision, Shan Moore, the father of a teenager who uses medical marijuana to control seizures, told The Colorado Independent that his son relies on ingestible medical marijuana to control his condition. Due to other health issue and also due to the fact that his son does not want to get high, smoking is out of the question for him.

The bill is now expected to return to committee in March.

Hot Sauce Williams ribs with Pot Sauce Williams MMJ Infused Sauce

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