Medical patients can easily obtain a prescription for drugs to treat a variety of ailments. Whether it is simply a common cold or a condition as severe as cancer, medically licensed professionals can prescribe treatment or a drug that they think are best suited for their patients. However, research conducted on some of the treatments has shown that they entail a plethora of drawbacks. There is a wide range of prescription drugs from depressants to opioids to stimulants and generally, prescription drugs are known to be highly addictive and can also cause bodily harm by damaging the heart, brain, and liver. Consequently, if patients abuse prescription drugs, it can ultimately prove to be life-threatening. For instance, the constant use of prescription drugs can cause severe damage to the heart and induce abnormal heart rates and other cardiac problems. Eventually, a patient can suffer from heart attacks, heart failure, and collapsed veins, according to Talbott Recovery. The concern over the growing epidemic of prescription drug abuse has led medical institutions and professionals to reconsider what patients are given. Notably, in regions where cannabis is legalized for medical purposes, more and more patients are beginning to use cannabis as an alternative to pharmaceutical medications. Specifically, Canada has witnessed its medical patient user base grow significantly over the past several years. There were 296,702 patients registered under Health Canada’s Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR) program as of March 2018. Compared to the same period a year prior, the number of registered patients grew by 76.9%. The robust growth reflects how rapidly the user base is growing as more people turn to cannabis as a medical alternative. Moreover, the global user base is projected to continually grow as more countries begin to implement medical cannabis programs. According to data compiled by MarketsAndMarkets, the global cannabis market is projected to grow from USD 10.3 Billion in 2018 to USD 39.4 Billion by 2023. Furthermore, the market is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 30.7% during the forecast period. Pasha Brands Ltd. (OTC:CRFTF) (CNSX:CRFT.CN), Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY), Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ:NEPT) (TSX:NEPT.TO), Acreage Holdings Inc. (OTC:ACRGF) (CNSX:ACRG-U.CN), Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTC:GTBIF) (CNSX:GTII.CN)
The use of cannabis for medicinal purposes can be dated back thousands of years. However, in the modern era, cannabis did not emerge as a medical treatment until the late 1990s. In particular, the U.S. was among the first nations to implement medical cannabis programs. And although cannabis is still not federally legalized for both recreational and medical purposes, states have the authority to vote on whether to legalize cannabis or not. Medical cannabis legalization began in the late 1990s in the U.S. after California became the first state to approve the plant after the implementation of Proposition 215. Based on the long history of California’s medical user base, there are potentially thousands of consumers who have been using cannabis for years. Overall, the extensive use of cannabis can develop tolerance in most users. As a result, consumers typically either purchase more cannabis or look for a more potent product. Additionally, some users may simply just take a “t-break,” which is a period during which consumers avoid the use of cannabis in order to minimize their tolerance. However, t-breaks are usually not applicable for medical patients that suffer from severe conditions such as chronic pain. In efforts to meet both spectrums of the recreational and medical markets, cultivators have engaged in the cultivation of “craft cannabis.” Similar to craft beer, craft cultivators are enthusiastically passionate about their work and strive to provide consumers with premium products. Craft cultivators are meticulous and attentive when it comes to growing cannabis. They generally avoid the use of artificial byproducts such as pesticides to grow a more natural product. Moreover, cultivators also tend to each and every individual plant in order to create the highest quality of cannabis buds. And at the end, craft cultivators achieve an organic and potent product that both recreational and medical users can thoroughly enjoy. “Both the craft cannabis and beer markets are driven by taste, product quality, and the consumers’ overall experience. Both are also dominated by industry professionals and hobbyists who want to produce the best product possible,” said Jeff Arbour, Co-Founding Partner of the Chameleon Collective. “The only way to make a name in the craft beer or craft cannabis market is by making an outstanding, unique product. No one succeeds in these industries without beer or cannabis that tastes and feels great with bonus points for smell, potency, and authenticity.”
Pasha Brands Ltd. (OTC:CRFTF) (CNSX:CRFT.CN) is also listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the ticker (CNSX:CRFT.CN). Earlier last month, the Company announced the “addition of three well-respected cannabis experts to the growing Pasha family: Scientific researcher Dr. Cris Felipe Alves, second-generation cultivator and consultant Travis Lane, and lifelong cultivator Kemal Morris.
As a solution provider to the craft cannabis industry, Pasha subsidiary BC Craft Supply Co. Ltd. (“BC Craft Supply”) aims to provide cannabis farmers with the tools to transition to new regulations governing the micro-cultivation licence category. These experts will assist farmers in making that transition.
‘I’m thrilled to have these experts join our team, and, with their support, I look forward to disrupting the market with craft products that will help solve Canada’s ongoing supply chain issues,’ said Patrick Brauckmann, Executive Chairman of Pasha Brands. ‘With these additions to the Pasha family, I’m confident that enthusiasm for craft products will continue to grow.’
Dr. Cris Felipe-Alves has worked in academic and commercial settings in Australia, Asia, and North and South America, and holds a B.Sc in Biological Sciences from the University of Brasília, and a PhD in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry from Nagoya University. While working as a senior scientist at a global diagnostics company, he led a team of researchers from discovery to R&D and sales of molecular tools designed to detect cancers non-invasively. During this time, he became interested in the potential for cannabis as a curative agent against several types of cancer. Since then, he has worked as an extraction specialist and a Quality Assurance Manager. He will act as the Senior Quality Assurance Person at BC Craft Supply.
‘Here at Pasha, I feel at home and am proud to be part of a brand house that has a focus on craft products,’ said Dr. Felipe-Alves. ‘I look forward to helping Pasha generate safe and efficient cannabis-based products that suit the needs of both recreational and medical consumers both in Canada and around the world.’
Renowned cultivator and consultant Travis Lane has been growing cannabis for more than 20 years. An organic, living-soil-based cultivator who has advocated for the facilitation of pesticide-free, sun-grown cannabis production, Lane has been involved in the founding of numerous small cannabis businesses over the last decade, including a successful chain of storefront dispensaries, a thriving online mail order service, and was a founding partner in one of the most successful hydrocarbon extraction brands in the country. Under legalization, Lane has divested from the illicit market to focus on multiple Cannabis Act license applications, as well as his work with Groundwork Consulting, focused on government relations and licensing for cultivation and retail, and Levity Solutions, a multi-purpose cannabis consultancy focused on assisting aspiring legal cultivators. He will act as a consultant for Pasha Brands and its subsidiaries.
‘The level of talent and expertise that exists in the prohibition-era marketplace is beyond impressive,’ said Lane. ‘These long-time innovators will represent a huge market factor once licensed, and I am proud to help Pasha facilitate this next wave.’
Kemal Morris is a lifelong cultivator who has had his hands in the soil ‘since before he could walk’. He watched his parents grow their own food – and cannabis – on Saltspring Island, British Columbia. Soon after Canada launched its first medical cannabis program in 2001, he spent 14 years learning the intricacies of breeding and extract production. In addition, Morris has spent the last four years launching a prominent Canadian Licensed Producer. He is passionate about patients and has connected hundreds of struggling patients with medicine. As the Master Grower for Pasha Brands’ owned Vancouver Island Licensed Producer, MedCann, Morris will act as facility designer, cannabis expert, educator and facilitator.
‘After completing a four-year term in the regulated industry, I am excited to work with Pasha,’ said Morris. ‘I finally have the opportunity to share all that I have learned with the cannabis enthusiasts I came up with, and I’m proud to be part of a company that is breaking the big business mold – affording a rightful place to the people who risked everything to create this thriving industry.’
About Pasha Brands: Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Pasha is a vertically integrated, prohibition-era brand house firmly rooted in BC’s craft cannabis industry, which boasts an international reputation. With proven capabilities in cannabis cultivation, genetic research and development, product processing, and retail, Pasha is uniquely positioned in the new legal cannabis market through its network of hundreds of craft cannabis suppliers under the Pasha umbrella. Pasha subsidiary, Medcann Health Products Ltd. is a Health Canada licensed cultivator and processor with a licence to sell medical cannabis products in Canada. Pasha and BC Craft are also developing a craft cannabis campus, which is dedicated to bringing craft quality into the newly legal cannabis market in Canada. BC Craft is driven to assist craft growers in obtaining security clearance and licensing to grow as micro-cultivators, specializing in education and compliance to bring growers into the regulated cannabis supply market. Pasha’s common shares trade on the CSE under the symbol “CRFT”. For more information, please visit www.pashabrands.com.”
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Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY) is a global pioneer in the research, cultivation, production and distribution of cannabis and cannabinoids currently serving tens of thousands of patients and consumers in 12 countries spanning five continents. Tilray Inc. recently announced that it had imported medical cannabis oral solutions in bulk into the United Kingdom from its Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)-certified facility in Canada. This export allows Tilray to provide authorized U.K. patients in need with a locally maintained supply of medical cannabis oral solutions. “As demand ramps up in the U.K., Tilray is well positioned to be a leading supplier of medical cannabis products,” says Sascha Mielcarek, Managing Director of Tilray Europe. “Regulations are progressing as more and more countries across Europe are recognizing the benefits of medical cannabis and its potential to improve patients’ quality of life. We’re pleased to reaffirm our commitment to delivering medical cannabis to patients in the U.K.and look forward to offering a variety of GMP-certified, pharmaceutical-grade products in the coming months.”
Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ:NEPT) (TSX:NEPT.TO) specializes in the extraction, purification and formulation of health and wellness products. Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. recently announced that it had completed initial commercial production lots and is now shipping cannabis extracts from its licensed, GPP facility in Sherbrooke, Quebec. After receiving its standard processing license from Health Canada on January 4th, 2019, Neptune completed required testing and commissioning of its Phase 1 (CO2-based) extraction installation, after which it produced its first lots of cannabis extract. Upon successful analysis and testing, the products are now being shipped and invoiced. “The quality of the extracts in Neptune’s first production runs at our state-of-the-art facility has been terrific, and we are proud to begin deliveries. This marks an important step forward in the execution of our vision to lever our decades of extraction and wellness industry experience towards becoming the world’s leader in the extraction, purification and formulation of value-added, differentiated cannabis products,” said Jim Hamilton, President and Chief Executive Officer of Neptune.
Acreage Holdings Inc. (OTCQX:ACRGF) (CNSX:ACRG-U.CN), headquartered in New York City, is the largest vertically integrated, multi-state owner of cannabis licenses and assets in the U.S. with respect to the number of states with cannabis-related licenses, according to the publicly available information. Acreage Holdings, Inc. recently announced that on April 17, its subsidiary, High Street Capital Partners, LLC entered into an agreement to acquire 100% of Deep Roots Medical LLC, a vertically integrated cannabis operator in Nevada, for a total deal value of USD 120 Million to be paid in common units and cash. Deep Roots marks Acreage’s entry into Nevada, increasing the company’s total state footprint to 20 (including pending acquisitions) – the largest in the US cannabis industry. With a population of three million, and tourism that attracts 43 million visitors per year, Nevada is estimated to generate nearly USD 800 Million in legal cannabis sales by 2022, according to Arcview Market Research. Deep Roots’ vertically integrated operations include cultivation, manufacturing & processing, a wholesale and distribution business, and seven retail dispensary licenses. Kevin Murphy, Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer of Acreage Holdings, Inc., commented, “We continue to deliver on our shareholder commitments to aggressively expand our presence in the West. We could not be more excited for what we believe will become a leading operation in the state of Nevada, one of the most important states in the cannabis industry.”
Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTCQX:GTBIF) (CNSX:GTII.CN), a national cannabis consumer packaged goods company and retailer, is dedicated to providing dignified access to cannabis while giving back to the communities in which they serve. Green Thumb Industries recently announced it opened its fourth retail location in Florida, Rise Oviedo, the community’s first cannabis store, on July 9th, 2019. This is GTI’s 26th open location in the country. Rise Deerfield Beach, Rise Pinellas Park and Rise Bonita Springs all opened earlier this year, and GTI has a retail footprint for up to 35 stores throughout Florida. The company owns and operates a manufacturing facility in Homestead where it cultivates and produces GTI’s branded cannabis products including Rythm and The Feel Collection. Rise(TM) also offers delivery to registered cardholders in Florida via orders placed at RiseCannabis.com or by contacting a Rise(TM) store directly. “We are honored to be the first company to provide access to medical cannabis in Oviedo and to help Floridians exercise their right to wellness,” said GTI Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. “Our Rise(TM) stores provide exceptional customer care and we’re thrilled to serve the people of Oviedo and surrounding communities.”
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