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Inside Cannabis

Inside Cannabis (Mar 7th, 2017)

Marijuana companies helped the world's top hedge fund gain 145 percent last year. Investments in North American marijuana producers contributed to 22 percentage points of last year’s gain for the Tribeca Global Natural Resources Fund and helped the hedge fund rise to the top among more than 10,000 rivals in a lackluster year for the industry. – BLOOMBERG

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Israel made a major move toward decriminalizing the recreational use of marijuana. The country has been at the forefront of marijuana research and commercialization, and now the cabinet has approved a plan that would impose fines rather than criminal penalties on those caught using the drug in public. Growing and selling marijuana would remain illegal. – NEW YORK TIMES

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A Nevada senator is pushing to get the state's recreational cannabis retail market up and running by mid-2017. Nevada approved adult-use legalization in November but doesn't have to issue retail licenses until 2018. In an effort to speed up the process, Sen. Tick Segerblom introduced measures to open the market this year, as well as allow the licensing of cannabis lounges. If passed, cannabis tourism could take off in the state. – LEAFLY

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New York Fashion Week threw its first-ever cannabis event this year. Men’s lifestyle blog Hemponair and cannabis event pop-up organizers Higher Education teamed up to throw the event, which raised money for a documentary on medical cannabis called "Our Medicine." It was the first NYFW event to publicly advertise its cannabis connections. – LEAFLY

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Houston is rolling out a plan to decriminalize low-level possession of marijuana. Introduced by District Attorney Kim Ogg, The Misdemeanor Marijuana Diversion Program will allow people caught with four ounces or less of marijuana to take a four-hour drug education course rather than face arrest, tickets or appearance in court. The program will not apply to those on probation, on bond or in a school zone. – MASS ROOTS

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Germany is setting up a "cannabis agency" to get a medical marijuana cultivation program up and running in the country by 2019. The move comes after the country approved legislation allowing some patients to get the drug as a prescription medication. The home-grown weed will be used to fill these prescriptions. Until then, the country will import its medical supply from Canada and the Netherlands. – NEW YORK TIMES

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Research into medical marijuana is being held back by low-quality weed. The U.S. has only one federally approved pot-growing facility, which cultivates all the marijuana used for research, but the quality of the product grown there is so low that researchers say there's not much they can do with it. – HIGH TIMES

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Colorado is looking to ban medical cannabis-growing co-ops in an effort to stop the black market. Proponents of the bill say large-scale grows are inviting federal scrutiny because it’s too hard to tell if those plants are being sold legally. If passed, the bill would set a statewide limit of 12 medical plants per residential property, a huge decrease from its current allowance of 99 plants per medical patient. – THE CANNABIST

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Lawmakers in Maryland are debating whether to legalize recreational cannabis use in the state. Though proponents of legalization admit that passage of the bill is unlikely in 2017, they believe that a strong debate this year will put them in a good position for next year’s legislative session. Next year, advocates are planning an all-out effort to get the Democratic-majority General Assembly to either legalize the drug or approve putting the issue on the ballot. – WASHINGTON POST

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