I now buy legal cannabis by the ton. I negotiate the price of dried, ground marijuana as if it were just another commodity…because it is. Cannabis is simply an amazing agricultural commodity and precious raw material input– dropped into a not-so-complicated equation, designed to produce profit.
Just two years ago I was paying some $2,000 a pound for world class marijuana. Now that price has fallen by two thirds and I pay roughly $600 a pound. This is great news for our purchasing department, but not so much for our wholesale prices. Alas, this was inevitable, it’s simple economics. It makes market expansion all the more critical. If you are not growing, you’re dying, or soon will be. More money in the market invites more competition, which motivates us to innovate, scale and ultimately find efficiencies in our processes.. or be chewed up by the competition.
At Organa Brands, I oversee an entire house of brands that makes everything from cannabis vaporizers to THC tablets, edibles and dabs, and even energy drinks. I expect that before long, our CBD products — many of which have no THC — will be stocked on shelves at convenience stores, gas stations, Costco and Walmart.
Fortunately, that’s where my experience lies. Before entering the world of cannabis, I had spent years as a printer salesman, selling millions of dollars of commercial printers to clients throughout the Rocky Mountain region. The commercial printing business is cutthroat, as any office manager with a decent sized copy machine will attest. The hardware is sold for the narrowest of margins, or even below cost, while the emphasis is put on the consumable commodity, which is the ink.
Seem familiar? If not, what kind of cellphone do you have? You likely got the phone on the cheap or even free, as long as you signed up for the lengthy service contract. Guess where the money is made?
There are purists who shun the idea that if (when) marijuana goes mainstream, it is a disaster. They believe it’s a cave-in to big capital, big corporations, to profiteers and all things sacred of this undoubtedly magical plant. I couldn’t disagree more. If we are to unlock and share the medicinal and wellness properties of cannabis, why not champion the professional distribution of our favorite plant? Why not embrace enterprise resource planning software platforms, hi-tech manufacturing techniques, tighter inventory controls, agricultural efficiencies and crisp profit-and-loss statements?
The best homage we can make to this amazing plant is to produce the finest cannabis oil possible, to place it in attractive, finely-tuned packaging, that is both alluring to adult consumers and childproof, and offer it to consumers nationwide. The greatest contribution I can give to this industry and this amazing plant is to make sure it finds its way into as many lives as possible. We can scale our businesses larger, scrutinize costs and expenses, pour over financial reports and become the solid start-up that transforms into a legacy company that withstands the ups and down of the business world.
I believe we should celebrate national cannabis brands because we are able to incorporate up-and-coming products and place their innovative oils, edibles and medicines into our nationwide distribution network that reaches some 1,200 dispensaries in 10 states (and counting). We should support and encourage each other to become a tribe of companies, a community of cannabis enthusiasts that collectively have the market power of “Big Cannabis”. While that name scares many, it simply means that our industry has “made it.” It means we are here to stay, that we withstood the test of time and government prohibition. We have found a permanent home in the world economy.
When people criticize what they fear is the “homogenization” of marijuana, I can only laugh. Is there any better way to celebrate diversity of brands and up-and-coming entrepreneurial know-how than to offer a launch pad to those superior cannabis products? A launch pad that guarantees their product can be sold from Boston to Berlin, from San Francisco to Sydney?
It has been this same process of consolidation, which is a natural evolution in any maturing industry, that led the O.penVAPE team to look beyond vape pens and incorporate a whole new range of products, and a whole new range of possibilities. That’s why earlier this year we rebranded as Organa Brands — literally a house of brands.
For years, the company where I work was known for its O.penVAPE pens. We sold some 6 million of our cartridges and earned a strong customer following and loyalty with budtenders nationwide. Was that the result of some fortuitous “lucky break” or the natural result of dozens, then hundreds of employees working weekends, staying late and attempting to find a route to success in the highly competitive cannabis industry? I’ll let you answer that one, because I already know.
Our downtown Denver corporate office looks more like a tech startup in Silicon Valley than a mega cannabis conglomerate. We have trendy coffees that self-brew on demand, organic snacks and the requisite office pets and ping pong table. But don’t let the laid back atmosphere or tunes playing on the Sonos fool you. Our office is stocked with brilliant minds ready to go toe-to-toe with Big Tobacco, Big Alcohol and Big Pharma. We relish the opportunity to measure up against other, more mature industries. To do that we must first pass through the inevitable commoditization of our products, work with the compression of profit margins and weather the oncoming storm of consolidation.
I don’t make any medical or health claims about cannabis, but I know that a deep feeling of wellness and peace accompanies the cannabis products we produce. Every day, I receive letters of thanks. If this deep wellspring of consumer support leads to the nation’s first national chain of dispensaries, or million-acre cultivation facility, or a multinational consumer products cannabis company, I say we should all celebrate.
Solidarity for abandoned cannabis patients.
The well-known physician and chairman of the Cannabis Association as a medicine (ACM) Dr. Franjo Grotenhermen has made a moving decision. Although certain positive aspects could be felt in parts through the enacted cannabis-as-medicine law, there would be enough problems in the entire treatment area, which now led to a drastic measure. During the ACM Annual General Meeting in Frankfurt on May 12, 2017, the medical doctor, who has been advocating medical medicine for many years, declares his decision not to eat any food for the next one to two weeks as a result of solidarity with the many cannabis patients left alone.
Doctor Franjo Grotenhermen joins the hunger strike.
The drug policy speakers of the parties were informed before Dr. Franjo Grotenhermen of the warnings – an honorary man.
Leafly.de is a medical cannabis information resource and knowledge portal
BERLIN–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Leafly, the world’s cannabis information resource, has arrived in Germany with the launch of www.Leafly.de, a German-language medical cannabis information resource and knowledge portal. The new German-language version of Leafly capitalizes on the expertise Leafly has cultivated over the past seven years as the world’s most visited cannabis website. As one of Leafly’s most prominent international ventures to date, Leafly.de formalizes Leafly’s commitment to providing reliable, accessible information about cannabis to people in Germany and around the world.
Leafly’s arrival in Germany was celebrated this week at a launch event in Berlin. Medical cannabis patients and representatives from the media joined Leafly’s editorial team to participate in a lively exchange on the topic of medical cannabis. Leafly’s inaugural German-language editorial team includes a range of healthcare experts, including science journalists, researchers, and a doctor. The launch of Leafly.de follows Leafly’s appearance at Berlin’s annual Hanfparade last year. Hanfparade is the largest pro-cannabis and hemp event in Germany that has taken place every year since 1997.
Leafly is the world’s leading cannabis website and mobile application, generating more than 12 million unique visits per month and more than 60 million page views. Approximately 70 percent of Leafly’s traffic comes from the United States and 30 percent originates from international destinations, including Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Spain, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. With the launch of Leafly.de, Leafly is now available in English, Spanish, French, and German.
Leafly.de initially will focus on several subject areas of immediate concern to medical cannabis patients and their healthcare providers. Visitors to the site can learn more about Germany’s recent medical cannabis reforms, how those changes affect them, and how they can become medical cannabis patients. News and analysis regarding medical cannabis laws and the supply of licensed cannabis-derived medicines will also be covered. In addition, Leafly.de will serve as a guide for doctors, pharmacists, and other medical professionals to learn more about the medical use of cannabis for conditions such as chronic pain.
Leafly.de taps into Leafly’s global coverage of cannabis science, medicine, and patient trends. Visitors will find the latest scientific research, patient surveys, and breaking news. The site also features a comprehensive cannabis dictionary featuring information from the anatomy of the cannabis plant to breaking policy news in Germany. The depth of Leafly’s expertise is why millions of people around the world visit Leafly every month for cannabis news and information.
Visit http://www.Leafly.de for more information.
As the world’s largest cannabis information resource, Leafly’s mission is to help patients and consumers make informed choices about cannabis and to empower cannabis businesses to attract and retain loyal customers through advertising and technology services. Learn more at http://www.leafly.com or download the five-star rated Leafly mobile app through Apple’s App Store or Google Play.
Original press release: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20170512005681/en/Leafly-Launches-German-Language-Edition
The $42,500,000 non-dilutive financing comes from The Green Streaming Finance Company of Canada Inc., a Vancouver-based company that provides non-equity financing solutions for cannabis producers. The streaming payment will be made in return for the right to purchase 20% of production at an all in cost +10% from expansion funded by Green Streaming in Germany.
We are pleased to be funding Maricann and their expansion efforts in Germany. This is a win-win relationship for Maricann and Green Streaming Finance, with no dilution to Maricann shareholders and a stable, reliable, renewable stream of revenue to Green Stream Finance from a proven producer of medicinal cannabis.
Under the terms of the agreement, Maricann will receive investment in two tranches, $15,000,000 and a $27,500,000. This financing will fully fund the planned 150,000 sq. ft (13,935 square meters) expansion of cultivation operations in its Ebersbach Facility and an additional 250,000 sq. ft. (23,255 sq. m.) of expansion in a two tiered cultivation plan, as well as an outdoor hemp farm from which Maricann will derive high CBD content active pharmaceutical ingredients. The Ebersbach facility (West of Dresden), is a former Cargill plant constructed 20 years ago at a cost of 80 million EUR at that time. The facility is comprised of multiple individual clean rooms that are ideal for cultivation of cannabis.
The Ebersbach facility offers Maricann a significant advantage in cost of overall construction and speed to market. The infrastructure for cultivation of cannabis in an indoor secured environment is already in place. We simply need to add the fertigation system, lights and benches for growing, and then can be operational.
Our competitors are spending north of $70,000,000 CAD for facilities with less than 1/3 the footprint of our Ebersbach location. To construct a similar facility today, the estimated cost would be over 120 million EUR. Maricann entered into a reservation agreement to purchase the facility for a total price of 3,410,000 EUR at closing.
About Maricann Group Inc.
Maricann is a vertically integrated producer and distributor of marijuana for medical purposes. The company was founded in 2013 and is based in Langton, Ontario, where it operates a medicinal cannabis cultivation, extraction and distribution business under federal licence from the Government of Canada. Maricann, which has federal licences to cultivate, process and distribute cannabis, services a patient base with more than 8,000 total registered patients since inception. Maricann is currently undertaking an expansion of its cultivation and support facilities in Canada in a fully funded 217,000 sq. ft. (20,159 sq. m), to support existing and future patient growth. Maricann GmbH is a 95% owned subsidiary of Maricann Netherlands BV, a 100% wholly owned subsidiary of Maricann Group Inc.
For more information about Maricann please visit our website at www.maricann.ca.
VP Investor Relations
Maricann Group Inc. (C.MARI)
845 Harrington Court, Unit 3
Burlington Ontario L7N 3P3
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Nine years after a Swiss referendum failed to gain public approval for cannabis legalisation, a campaign group has reignited the movement for reform.
Legalize It, a Zurich-based group, has launched a campaign to legally regulate cannabis across Switzerland. The objectives of the initiative, Legalize It describes, are three-fold: to allow adults the “freedom and right to consume cannabis”, to prevent those who seek cannabis from having to purchase from the “black market”, and to ensure increased investment into drug use prevention, related research, and social security. The funds for such investment, the group says, will be acquired from the taxation of cannabis sales, and savings on law enforcement expenditure.
The campaign comes in the form of a federal popular initiative, a legislative instrument by which Swiss citizens can suggest changes in the law. If the proposal garners 100,000 valid signatures from Swiss citizens, it will be put forward for debate by the Federal Council, the country’s highest executive authority, and the Federal Assembly, the highest legislative authority.
The cultivation, sale, and use of cannabis are outlawed in Switzerland in almost all cases, however punishment for minor possession is relatively light. Under the current law, an adult found to be in possession of up to 10 grams of cannabis will be fined 100 Swiss francs (£78), and will not be criminally prosecuted. In 2015, there were a total of 18,366 such fines across Switzerland.
Around three percent of adult Swiss residents use cannabis monthly, and almost 40 per cent of adults claim to have used it at least once in their life, according to Addiction Monitoring in Switzerland.
An attempt to legally regulate cannabis was resoundingly opposed by the public in a 2008 referendum, in which 63 per cent of voters opposed the measure. However, the public’s view on the subject has changed over the past decade, according to Nino Forrer, spokesperson for Legalise It.
“Many other countries have legalised or decriminalised cannabis in some form since 2008 and the results are good […] Based on this new data, the Swiss people will see more benefits than harms in legalising cannabis, I’m sure”, Forrer told TalkingDrugs.
“There has not been a massive rise in cannabis consumption among the youth [in places that have legalised cannabis], no surge in traffic accidents, no massive increased health costs. Instead, many jurisdictions have put the extra money from cannabis taxes into public healthcare, infrastructure, and schools in order to improve the standard of living for their people.”
For example, in 2016, the US state of Colorado collected over $150 million in cannabis sale taxes, of which around $50 million was directed to school projects. Similarly, Legalize Itclaims that taxing the drug could raise 100 million Swiss francs (£78 million) each year, based on their estimates of consumption rates.
Forrer believes that the success of foreign initiatives, such as that in Colorado, may be enough for the Swiss authorities and public to support Legalize It’s new campaign – but only if the message can be effectively be delivered.
“We have had very good responses so far! Many people in Switzerland were waiting for this initiative, so they are very happy that we have started it”, Forrer told us.
“Now, we will try to inform the public as much as possible in order to gather a strong activist base all over the country. Mass media affects our perception of cannabis to a large extent, so good press is needed in order to win over the minds of Swiss people”.
If this initiative proves successful, Switzerland could become the first country in Europe to introduce a legally regulated cannabis market.
The laws recently decided to strengthen the medicines and technical aids can improve the care of many patients, but the pharmacies as providers currently facing serious challenges in the regulatory framework. The prohibition on mail for prescription drugs and the strengthening of drug price regulation associated one of the core concerns of pharmacists for the coming legislative term of the Bundestag. This conviction represents the chairman of the German Association of Pharmacists (DAV), Fritz Becker, in his Political Report to the opening of the 54th DAV Economic Forum in Berlin. In the pharmaceutical supply Support Act (AM-VSG) and (HHVG) in medicines and medical aids Supply Act partial success, although had been made, so Becker, but the good supply of medicines in itself is now at risk.
“That finally got the compensation will be adjusted for recipes requiring documentation and drugs, represents a recognition of our pharmaceutical services represent,” says Becker. It also’m him that it no longer intended to give exclusive contracts of insurance in the cytostatic supply. “The free Pharmacies choice – even with cytostatic drugs – is not Bookseller, but practiced patient and consumer protection.” For vaccines he was DAV-Chairman welcomed that the aids tenders now “confident that the delivery problems will fall by the tendering ban.” must take into account quality criteria and additional payments would be monitored more closely. “My fear is that not much will change for the insured in practice. Therefore, we must continue to be vigilant. Just small pharmacies “In addition, excessive documentation requirements could” to waive the provision of aids move “.
Looking at the regulatory and economic uncertainties and imponderables for pharmacies in the outgoing and next legislature Becker calls his colleagues to take decisive action on: “The year of the federal election is ready hold significant challenges for us has to face our profession and will provide – ! with confidence, unity and dedication “The DAV-chairman continued:” Let us continue to fight together for an excellent network of 20,000 pharmacies, which supplies daily 3.6 million people, produces 250,000 messenger services and provides 150,000 jobs. ”