Marijuana market: High risk, high reward

Marijuana is illegal in Tennessee, but when and if the law changes, the business opportunities will be vast — along with the risks.

The marijuana market is spurring the creation of hundreds of new businesses in marijuana-friendly states, according to Taylor West, deputy director of the National Cannabis Industry Association. Those are the growers and sellers, but also the many ancillary businesses supporting the industry.

“There are quite a lot (of opportunities), given it’s a $3 billion industry and growing,” she said, speaking to a crowd of entrepreneurs at the Entrepreneurs’ Organization’s NERVE conference in Nashville on Friday.


Cleaveland: Researcher makes the case for use of medical marijuana

Marijuana is the popular name for cannabis, a plant genus that contains three species. Although often highlighted for its controversial use as a recreational drug, cannabis has drawn increasing attention in recent years for its use in a variety of medical conditions.

Cannabis is chemically complex, containing more than 85 substances (cannabinols) that have biological effects. One cannabinol, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), stimulates specific receptors in the brain to cause a range of effects, including euphoria. THC is the major factor in the recreational use of cannabis; the other cannabinoids have no known psychoactive effects but have been increasingly used in the treatment of disease.


Man arrested after accepting marijuana delivery


Undercover police officers arrested a man after he had almost 5 pounds of marijuana delivered to a local business.

Police said they had been investigating James Lobasco for having marijuana shipped to him in the past.

Officers said they observed Lobasco and his girlfriend parked outside a business at 1215 Ninth Ave. N. on Wednesday.

Officers saw a U.S. Mail truck pull into the business and drop off a box. When the mail truck left, police said the suspect’s girlfriend entered the business and picked up the package.

Police said they detained Lobasco and his girlfriend while a K-9 unit arrived.

After the K-9 indicated there was narcotics inside the package, police said Lobasco consented for a search of the package.


Hemp farms inspections are underway

The investigators also took GPS coordinates around the grow area. That can be relayed to authorities, so that when they fly over properties looking for illegally planted fields, they will know Rasmussen's is legal.

Hemp farmers are generally growing the plant for textile products.

They also measured how quickly plants are growing. The tallest was 72 inches and planted six weeks ago.

Hemp, which has a strong resemblance to marijuana, is controversial and highly regulated because of its possibility for THC levels.

THC is the chemical that produces a high in marijuana users.


Farmers gather for hemp lessons

MURFREESBORO – Farmers from across Tennessee gathered Friday afternoon in Murfreesboro to learn about the ins and outs of growing industrial hemp.

A capacity crowd squeezed into a conference room at the Embassy Suites to hear speakers discuss the budding industry.

One farmer, Christian Grantham of Woodbury, explained he became a licensed hemp farmer, so he can help future hemp farmers by experimenting with varieties and conditions.

“I’m here to learn what we can do legally and what we can produce,” Grantham said about growing about an acre of Canda hemp on his Cannon County farm.


A mother's choice: Carly's Law study not an option for Madison family

A Madison mother, hoping to get her daughter into the CBD (cannabidiol) oil or "Carly's Law" study at UAB, now has a tough choice to make.

She must decide whether to enroll her 2 and a-half year old into a different national study where children have already died; uproot her family to a state where CBD oil is legal; or wait until it's legal here in Alabama.

We first introduced you to Gena Dalton and her daughter Charlotte last year.

Charlotte suffers from Dravet Syndrome, a rare but severe form of epilepsy.

“Charlotte's first seizure was at 6 months old, it lasted 30 minutes, the next one 7 months old, 45 minutes, and at that point, we knew something was wrong,” says Dalton.


Tennessee hemp farmers start planting highly regulated seeds

ONESBOROUGH, Tenn. (AP) - Farmers in Tennessee have started receiving highly regulated hemp seeds to produce the state's first legal harvest of the crop in more than 70 years.

The Johnson City Press reports that 46 farmers are receiving the seeds this year through a pilot program offered by the Tennessee Department of Agriculture. Officials hope to learn what varieties of hemp will grow best in which areas of the state.

Washington County farmer Wayne Smith says he expects to harvest the crop in four months and sell hemp oil at a local farmers market.


Hemp farmers waiting for delivery of seeds

A little more than an acre on Wayne Smith’s Eastern Star area farm is plowed and fertilized, but the highly regulated hemp seeds he requested from the state Department of Agriculture months ago still haven’t arrived.

“I put my order in and I’m waiting patiently for my seeds to arrive,” Smith said Monday. “It’s going to be late in the growing season compared to what I’d like, but I’m hoping for a good first season.”

Delayed while the state awaited import permits from the federal Drug Enforcement Agency for the seeds, which have been illegal to grow without a permit since 1970’s Controlled Substances Act, some farmers in Tennessee were doubtful the approval would come in time to grow a useable crop of industrial hemp this year.


Police in Tennessee Expand Their Search for Edible Marijuana

For almost 20 years, Jim Jefferies has been police chief in LaFollette, Tennessee and during that time, he has busted hundreds of vehicles passing marijuana through his town. But today, he is on the lookout for something different: marshmallows and lollipops.

A few days ago, his officers stopped a Chevy Blazer driven by a couple with three children in tow. After inspecting the car, the officers found 24 pounds of candies and cookies containing marijuana. These items are popular in states where marijuana is legalized and it’s difficult to differentiate them from sweet goodies.


TN: Marijuana extract now 'legal,' but can you get it?

CBD oil to treat severe epilepsy legalized in Tennessee, but state and federal laws conflict

For two Clarksville moms, Felicia Harris (left, with daughter, Lexy) and Melissa Macomber (right, with daughter Madison), a bill allowing the use of a marijuana extract, CBD, for use in treating severe childhood epilepsy, is a lifesaver, but conflicting laws mean getting CBD still fraught with risk.(Photo: THE LEAF-CHRONICLE/PHILIP GREY)

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – The cause of medicinal marijuana seemingly took a step forward in Tennessee this month when Gov. Bill Haslam signed a measure making an extract of marijuana legal for use in treating intractable epileptic seizures.


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