Titania Biologica Vol. 4

Aaaaaand we’re back!

 

Jumping right into today’s news, let’s take a look at the five hottest marijuana stocks on the market (via Yahoo Finance).  Investments in publicly-traded marijuana stocks have jumped from 13 million in 2013 to already 1 billion dollars in 2018 so far!  It’s no secret that there is a lot of money to be made in the marijuana industry so let’s explore some of the leaders.

 

While Big Pharma has typically led the charge into medical marijuana, Big Tobacco is taking a plunge with Phillip Morris looking for new avenues to turn a profit.  

 

Cannabis Wheaton is a Canadian firm that is vertically integrated to reduce costs in the first national market to be fully legal and federally regulated.  We’re excited to see what CBW can do over the next few years with the rising demand across Canada.

 

Altria Group, another tobacco giant that has successfully forayed into vaping technology, has its sights set on cannabis legalization and could successfully do so with its large financial reserves.  

 

Insys, a big Pharma company that has already begun producing synthetic THC products, Subsys and Syndros, suffered some blow back from the impending national opioid epidemic but looking ahead, is a stock investors might want to pick up while it is down.  

 

Aphria, another Canada-based company, is focused mainly on online sales of products and offer a line of smokeless medications that are popular for those interested in lower doses.  Aphria is also a notable company in that has its eyes set on expanding the cannabis market in Africa.  10.000 tons of marijuana are harvested on the continent, which could be turned into a lot of money for countries should they legalize.  

 

GW Pharmaceuticals created the first marijuana-based, experimental drug used to children with epilepsy, Epidolex.  The company is based in the UK where marijuana legalization is a hot topic. England already has medicinal marijuana products, including Sativex, and a recent petition shows that UK citizens are adamant on legalising the plant that could provide 3.5 billion pounds in tax revenue.  

 

Bloomberg.com offers insight on cannabis investments on Wall Street, saying that most investors still wish to stay under the radar when it comes to cannabis.  The Green Rush, or cannabis market boom, is expected to 75 billion in sales by 2030 but still remains illegal on the federal level.  The company Merida is a private equity firm that focuses 15% of its portfolio on cannabis and built its leadership on experience in the industry as well as East coast grit in familiarity with stock trading.  The company plans to do 75 deals a month, with due diligence on 10 or them, taking a risky dartboard approach that will most likely pay off.

Titania Biologica Vol. 3

First off, I’d like to apologize about such a long hiatus!  As we all know, sometimes, life throws a lot at us but now, back to business.  

I hope everyone had a phenomenal holiday (4/20!) and but now it is on to May.  And with the turning of the calendars comes a topic close the heart of your fearless blog writer.  The State of Maine is voting today, May the 2nd, to determine if the most northeastern state will “join the handful of states with a functioning market for recreational marijuana.” (MainePublic.org) Maine voted in 2016 to legalize recreational use of marijuana but it has not decided how to utilize this legislation.  This is the second attempt at finding a common ground in the state capital and notable differences from the first failed attempt include the elimination of social clubs, decrease in the number of plants that can be cultivated, and no tax-sharing with munincipalities.  Let’s have faith in our elected officials to do the right thing and help the great state of Maine live up to its motto “Dirigo” or “I lead.”

Also coming from Maine is a piece by CNN which highlights how medical marijuana has helped thousands of those suffering from opiod addiction.  The video touches on how the opioid epidemic can be combated with medical marijuana and the success stories that happen everyday and should not be hindered by outdated laws.  

Keeping with the medical side of things, Medical News Today released an article that talked about a study by Washington State University that sheds light the effects of THC and CBD on depression.  Their claim is that 10 puffs tended to release stress and just 2 puffs reduced anxiety. They also found that long term use could exacerbate depression also.  Check out the article here.

The Ray and Tye Noorda Foundation has given the largest gift ever for medical marijuana research ($4.7 million!) to UCSD in hopes that will help find a treatment for autism.  Entrepreneur.com’s article explains that CBD is the main ingredient aimed to be tested on children with moderate to severe autism.  Here’s hoping they find positive results.

The Times announced in mid-April that the FDA approved a cannabis-based drug for epilepsy! The drug is called Epidolex and is added to a short list of medicines derived from cannabis.  This a great development in pharmaceuticals and we hope to report many more breakthroughs like it.

I’m not really one to even try and wrap my mind around cryptocurrencies but I’m sure many of your reading have a fine grasp.  Forbes reports of a Seatll-based firm, düber, has released a new currency, dübercoins, that will try to enter an industry that has traditionally only dealt in cash.  Read the interview with düber’s CEO if you want to learn more.  

Another listing from Forbes is about a different kind of merger of tech and marijuana.  “I heart Jane” aims to be the GrubHub of cannabis and so far has 250 clients in 10 states.  The service seems pretty legit and very helpful for business that want to go from ‘brick and mortar’ to ‘click and mortar.’

Big strides are being taken around the world:

Zimbabwe is beginning to issue cannabis cultivation licenses  

Marijuana flowers are legal in Italy but only as ‘collectors items’

New Jersey now offers medical marijuana with 20,000 people already enrolled

The Svans for Georgie (the country) go on a quest for an ancient culture’s cannabis cooking

Back in California, High Times has produced a piece that goes inside THC Design’s 20,000 sq. ft. facility.  The place is state of the art and the article definitely worth a read.  

To end with our pop-culture update we return to Ricky Williams who is now featured in an article by The New Yorker.  Williams has enrolled in in a doctoral program in Los Angeles and seems to have already dove deep into the annals of Chinese-medicine pharmacopoeia.  He says he tries to avoid Western Medicine and that even the Chinese recommend cannabis seeds to relieve constipation.  

 

Well that’s all folks! We will check back in with you soon

Titania Biologica Vol. 2

Welcome back!

Thanks for tuning in for this weeks’ roundup of cannabis-related news.

Let’s get started first with what we think is a much needed refresher on cannabinoids, issued by High Times.  High Times has been in publication since 1974 and is widely regarded as a staple of counter-culture news.  The article begins by answering the questions what are cannabinoids, how they are received in the human body through the endocannabinoid system, and what are the most prominent cannabinoids.  

This article was definitely helpful in my quest for more comprehensive cannabis knowledge, I had not heard of a couple of these cannabinoids (CBC and THCV).  The article is easy to read and little light on the science but luckily includes links to more in-depth research on each of the topics presented. Definitely give this one a read and feel free to bring up your new found weed facts at your next cocktail hour or medicinal summit.  

The aforementioned article is based on research done over the past few decades done across the world but not really in the US of A.  NPR released an online piece covering the state of cannabis research in the Union.  Marijuana has been regulated in the United States for almost a century, the result of which being that research on the plant as a medicine has been widely prevented.  Even as recent as last month, DHHS Secretary Alex Azar claimed that there is “no such thing as medical marijuana.”  This is just another example of preposterous policies coming out of this years government which has ramifications that resonate across the country.  

NPR’s article explores a few anecdotes of patients who have suffered because of the tight regulations on marijuana.  Most doctors prescribe opioids for people who suffer from pain but as I’m sure many of you are familiar with, the opioid pandemic has grown out of hand in our country due to the drugs’ addicting and debilitating nature.  

While many Americans are left wondering when research legislation will catch up to the times (almost all states have ordained medical marijuana programs), companies from our northern neighbors in Canada have begun research that will hopefully ignite this change.  

“According to the US Drug Enforcement Administration, cannabis has no medical use. Until two years ago, all domestic research on the drug had to rely on rotting samples from a single, well-secured weed facility at the University of Mississippi.”

Despite this fact, Business Insider covers two companies changing the game as part of Johnson & Johnson’s JLabs Innovation network.  The companies’ aim to explore the almost 400 compounds (more than just THC and CBD!) found in cannabis and the medical benefits of them.  Vapium Medical and Avicanna are the two leading the way, but hopefully the pharmaceutical giant will begin to accept more applicants to explore the positive sides of growing and consuming cannabis.  

While the scientific side of research is still being established, Leafly comes at us with a more artistic approach to cannabis therapy.  Art therapy is an emerging technique to help patients process their relationships with themselves and others.  Seems like a perfect pair with cannabis right? Apparently it is not as simple as that but you’ll have to read the article to see why.  

Now to the lighter side of things….

Have you ever seen those hemp-infused beers in the cooler and wondered if they might “get me high?” I stand guilty as charged but that is the clearly not the case.  Until now! Blue Moon founder, Keith Villa, has decided to change the game with not a hemp infused beer but THC-rich adult beverage.  He is working with a cannabis research company, CERIA, to create what some might call the perfect beverage.  Read the article from Forbes here.

Now if you live in Los Angeles, you might be able to enjoy this special beer in a social setting in the near future.  WeHo has approved licenses for cannabis consumption lounges! Eater LA announced that there will be 40 licenses available accompanied by a detailed application process.  This definitely requires a trip back to LA for me ASAP to enjoy one of the two types of lounge licenses up for grabs.  

Another one for those of you in Southern California is an article by AdWeek.  They want to give us a heads up that MedMen will be conducting a $2million dollar ad push trying to combat the negative attributes to those who consumer marijuana (“stoners”).  They will also be publishing a quarterly magazine called Ember. Even though they are fairly new, MedMen is certainly a prominent name in the consumer-facing game, modeling their dispensaries like an Apple store and trailblazing new markets such as Manhattan, NY.  

Manhattan you say?! Yes.  MedMen is set to open up a 5th Avenue dispensary bordering Bryant Park.  While New York only has a handful of medical patients, MedMen has ignored the scrutiny of others and decided to get ahead of the game and get some high-density attention from New Yorkers.  Prospectors put recreational legalization in New York coming in 4-8 years and MedMen clearly wants to cash in on that.

Heading back west, and with potentially upsetting news to those in Colorado, lawmakers have again said no to cannabis clubs.  While this might seem like a setback to some, Colorado has been on the cutting edge of cannabis legislation and may soon change their minds regarding clubs.  Coloradans, please feel free to enjoy responsibly in your own homes in the meantime.

In pop-culture:  Last week we covered Ricky Williams arrival into the business of cannabis.  Today we cover Lamar Odom’s.  Lamar had a widely covered breakdown, do to substance abuse, but has since turned it around with the help therapy, rehab, and marijuana.  Lamar’s company is called Rich Soil Organics, and has brought to market many holistic products ranging from soap, to body butter and teeth-whitening charcoal powder.  

Thanks again for tuning in and if you would like to leave a comment feel free to do so below!

 

Over and Out.

Titania Biologica Vol. 1

Howdy Folks!

We’d like to thank everyone for visiting the first installment of Titan Biologics’ blog.  

 

As you know from OptiVeg™ (forgive the shameless plug), we at Titan are dedicated to the highest standards of non-GMO, organic and sustainably-sourced ingredients when it comes to our products.  So why wouldn’t we apply the same standards to our blog? Titanica Biologica aims to be your go-to source for up-to-date information from reliable sources (news outlets, publications, case studies, etc.). Our goal is  to educate ourselves and our readers as we strive to be successful, resourceful, and responsible players in the cannabis industry.

 

I know that many of you might have contradicting opinions from us when it comes to the politics, science, and commercialization of weed. Just remember that we are here only to state the facts available to the public on these issues and again, as in our products, keep the salt out of it.

 

Titan Biologics is a Los Angeles, CA based company founded by an entrepreneur with a background in Medicine and Biology.  He taught himself the ins-and-outs of no-till, hydroponics, aquaponics and sustainable agronomy. Some might say he has a green thumb.  Over the past decade, he has combined these tangible skills with an insatiable desire to provide cannabis farmers with the means to create the best organic crops on the market.  

 

But enough about us, let's get to what’s going on in the world this week.  For you local readers, we will try to highlight Los Angeles and California news, but also stay abreast of the happenings across the rest of the country–and sometimes the world.  Let’s dig deeper.

 

Coming from the LA Times this week is also this week’s light listening.  The article covers a podcast put out by two guys who get together, kick back and talk about some well-researched Weed History.  They have two episodes out right now that mainly contain commentary on the culture of weed throughout the modern era, including some hilarious and entertaining tidbits about Maya Angelou and Willie Nelson.  Give them a listen here.  

 

Another piece that covers the weed landscape in Los Angeles comes from Leafly.  Leafly is not only “the largest cannabis website in the world” (Wikipedia), but also a great resource for cannabis patients and enthusiasts alike to distinguish what strain is right for them. Leafly keeps dispensaries and growers honest, so they won’t try to sell you some Sour Diesel that finds you 4 hours late to brunch, locked into your 10th episode of Rick and Morty and covered in 64 oz. of Bugles.  

 

Back to the article… Leafly covers an interesting aspect of LA’s weed scene–the involvement of women.  Now we aren’t talking tradeshows, guys, we’re talking about the amount of women that hold cannabis licenses in the City of Angels.  The number might surprise you, or not, but it’s less than 25%, it’s closer to 1 out of 8!  If you haven’t been to LA in a while, women make up at least half of the population.  These emerging female canna-business owners will help fuel the legalization movement and empower women who have traditionally been under-represented in the cannabis industry.  

 

Now many of us in California might “find it increasingly easy to buy pot but harder to find legal places to smoke it,” says Paul Elias in an article for marinij.com. He goes on to explore how San Francisco has allowed the opening of the Barbary Coast Lounge, a dispensary that permits the use of marijuana products on location. Cannabis tourism is predicted to be a major part of the industry, but how it will evolve is still very uncertain.  Elias tells, “The city of West Hollywood has approved plans to issue up to eight licenses; the tiny San Francisco Bay Area town of Alameda said it will allow two; and Oakland and South Lake Tahoe each have one lounge. Sacramento, Los Angeles and other cities are discussing the issue but have not authorized any lounges.”  If you are in California and want to weigh in on this issue, we’re sure there is a local representative or hotline you can call..

 

In national news, Forbes has called for investors to avoid cannabis investments because of uncertain futures. If you’re reading this I’m sure you are already quite invested and would love to tell Forbes about all the great green things that are happening on the ground level.  

 

Now as much as I am an storied wordsmith, Titan Biologic’s founder is our mad scientist.  This guy enjoys a cold-brew precisely as much as a hand-roll and I’m sure he would love to discuss all there is to know about neurotransmitters and the endocannabinoid system.  Alas, I cannot. So I’ll leave it to Science Daily.

 

***Please enjoy coffee AND cannabis responsibly***

 

In pop culture: retired NFL running back, Ricky Williams, has become a healer.  His brand Real Wellness, RW for short, markets a range of products from salves to vape cartridges to consulting services.  While the NFL does not permit the use of marijuana, many retired athletes are harnessing the benefits of cannabis to help manage pain from years of physical exertion.  Perhaps the endorsement of this wonderful plant and its medicinal benefits by influencers like Ricky will help lawmakers realize that things need to change.

 

I want to end our first installment with a quote from Ricky that truly resonated with me. I hope does with you too:

“When they write my obit, I want it to talk about the people I’ve touched and the lives I’ve changed.”