The US falling behind other countries—like Canada—on marijuana—commentary

U.S. federal law that classifies marijuana as a Schedule 1 Drug (the same category as heroin and LSD), and places restrictions on interstate commerce as well as banking, puts America at a competitive disadvantage when it comes to expanding both our domestic and international markets. Canada is now attracting large-pocket investors who are cautious about putting their funds into the American market while a number of Canadian companies are investing in the U.S. and licensing some of our most popular brands and products. Canada has also reached an agreement with Germany to allow the European superpower to import medical cannabis.

Canada’s new decriminalization law will allow individual provinces to decide if they want to participate and, if so, to implement and regulate the legalization of marijuana as they see fit. Most provinces don’t want to use the dispensary model that has proliferated in the states that have legalized recreational marijuana in the United States. Plus, the marijuana business is going to be highly regulated in Canada, with a ban on advertising and even tougher rules than their alcohol and cigarette laws, and they are also committed to developing new testing technology for driver impairment and work safety compliance.

Canada is taking a very practical approach to this burgeoning industry and at the end of the day they’re going to be the world leader. The rest of us are going to have to live and learn from what impact they will have on the marijuana industry because they’re going to be the Colorado of federal legalization.

Israel is another country where medical marijuana is federally legal. Many people don’t realize that Israel is the world’s number two tech market behind only Silicon Valley. Israel has the most start-ups and venture capital funding per capita and has been studying marijuana since the 1960’s. In 1964, an Israeli scientist discovered tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the main psychoactive constituent of cannabis and he later identified the endocannabinoid system, the foundation of medical cannabis methodology.

With some of the most advanced marijuana researchers producing many of the best testing results, doctors from around the world go to Israel to collaborate and participate with Israeli scientists and researchers in studies including brain injuries, cancer-fighting drugs and painkillers. The number of licenses granted by The Health Ministry to growers, doctors and patients is being increased to expand the local market, as well as to support industry requests for exports. When it comes to integrating marijuana agriculture, chemistry, drug delivery and pharmacology, no country does it better than Israel.

Let’s move on to our mother…

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