Policy/Biz

Is Federal Law A Big Detterent To The Marijuana Industry?

The past two years have been nothing but short of incredible for cannabis and its bustling industry, with an increasing number of people seeing the positives in using the drug and incorporating it into all sorts of products. Canada even went ahead and lifted the federal ban on it, finally legalizing its recreational use while its medical marijuana industry continues to steadily tread new ground.

However, the same can’t be said across the pond since cannabis is still placed in somewhat of a grey area, with both locals and federal authorities unsure when, where and how to step in, despite two years of openly talking about the growing industry. In fact, the head of the top federal medical research agency said in a new interview that marijuana’s status as a Schedule I drug inhibits studies into the plant, which then prevents scientists from fully studying its effects and possible health benefits. This, according to him, can have negative repercussions, what with more and more people obtaining marijuana from state-legal dispensaries in a growing number of states.

According to Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), research into the possible risks and benefits of cannabis is currently being blocked by the current policy. Furthermore, he also said that at the moment, scientists are in a “funny place” in the U.S. when it comes to cannabis since researching the plant and its compounds first means that it must be from a single source. Right now, that source is a government-authorized farm at the University of Mississippi, which has been widely criticized because the cannabis from it supposedly lacks the properties that state market cannabis has.

“Frankly, we know far too little about the benefits and risks of smoked marijuana. There have been very few studies that have actually rigorously tested that,” Collins added. “It’s going to be very hard to interpret data about smoked marijuana when the actual nature of the product is vastly different depending on where you got it.”

One other deterrent is that, to study marijuana, researchers often have to go through an extensive series of hurdles at first, making things harder than they should be.

Cannabis New study shows that cannabis makes exercise more fun. kumarfotographer/Pixabay

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