November 4 2022,
THE BIG IDEA
Like many of you, I’m getting excited for MJBiz Con. Respond to this email to invite me to your party.
In the newsletter:
- “Astronomical” potential liability for potency inflation
- Sean Combs buys an MSO
Plus lots more.
WeedWeek regularly links to paywalled content
WHAT YOU MISSED IN WW CALIFORNIA PRO
The Jeeter Lawsuit: What’s next?
It’s not yet clear whether the proposed class action lawsuit alleging “systematic overstating” of THC content in Jeeter’s California pre-rolls will gain traction in court. If it does, lawyers tell WeedWeek we can expect to see suits making similar allegations about brands, manufacturers and potentially testing labs.
The defendants have called the allegations “baseless and ridiculous.”
Disclosure: After the complaint was filed, WeedWeek received a letter from a lawyer representing defendant Dreamfield Brands demanding that we preserve documentation in light of potential future litigation. The letter alleged that “there is an issue regarding the circumstances in which testing was performed on the several Jeeter products and statements and accusations made by your publication about the knowingly flawed testing.”
WeedWeek’s response: The allegation has no merit. The test the defendant’s lab disputed was not flawed, and its result was consistent with three other tests on Jeeter products.
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HIP HOP MOGUL P DIDDY JOINS CANNABIZ
The hip-hop mogul who goes by Sean Combs and P. Diddy, among other names, is joining the cannabis. He’s spending $185M on production and retail assets being divested as part of Cresco Labs’ proposed $2B acquisition of fellow MSO Columbia Care.
- The deal creates the country’s first minority-owned, vertically integrated multi-state cannabis company, as well as the world’s largest Black-owned cannabis company, according to a release from Combs and the companies.
- The new company will have a presence in New York, Illinois and Massachusetts.
Additional divestitures are expected before the Cresco/Columbia Care tie up can close.
- On Election Day, weed is on the ballot in Arkansas, Maryland, Missouri, North Dakota and South Dakota. The results look iffiest in the Dakotas.
- Senate Majority Leader Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Congress is “very close” to passing a bi-partisan banking bill.
- A Leafly report found legal cannabis is the country’s sixth largest cash crop.
- A new 20-minute doc from Forbes discusses “How America botched legal weed.” Reporter Will Yakowicz also discussed how interstate trade could legally begin.
- NY Cannabis Insider points out that NBA Hall of Famer Chris Webber and entrepreneur Lavetta Willis, who are part of a team to manage the New York’s $200M equity fund have “strong financial ties” to Cookies. “Webber and Willis are tasked with raising funds for dispensaries that will compete with their own financial interests,” if Cookies gets a New York license.
- Infused drinks are struggling to gain market share, MJBiz reports.
- Hawthorne, Scotts Miracle-Gro’s cannabis growing arm, said it was shutting down SoCal lighting brand Luxx, which it acquired in January. Scotts acquired Luxx, in large part, for its relationships with legacy growers including Jungle Boys.
- Tech firm Akerna said Halloween sales were up year over year.
- Green Market Report interviewed Michael Johnson, new CEO of seed to sale tracking company Metrc.
- High Times’ parent company sued the people it bought the company from in 2016 accusing them of lying during negotiations.
Green Market Report
- Canna Law Blog notes that the SEC is targeting a cannabiz stock promotion scheme.
State and local:
- Gov. Gavin Newsom said he wants California to supply the nation’s weed.
- Former WW California editor Donnell Alexander has a big story about the fall of California county official Adam Hill who got caught up in a cannabis bribery scandal.
- Nevada could see up to 40 consumption lounges open next year.
Las Vegas Review-Journal
Health and science:
- An Israeli company cloned cannabis cells — not plants — with up to 12x potency.
- The Intercept reports on Israel’s “pot apartheid,” where Palestinians are punished far more harshly for use.
Fun and interesting:
- Thrillist took a trip to Mendocino’s weed and wine country.
- Berner cut the ribbon on Cookies’ New York City store, which doesn’t currently sell THC.
- Vegas-based retailer Planet13 has applied to open its first Illinois store outside Chicago.
- Kiva‘s infused gravy is back this Thanksgiving season.
- California brand Garden Society said it would expand to the Garden State.
- Jetty Extracts said it would be the first brand to introduce OCal-certified solventless products. OCal is a state-run “comparable to organic” certification for cannabis products.
- Massachusetts-based Fernway said its vapes are now all recyclable.
- The Emerald Cup announced its judges for 2022.