The University of Florida Introduces Hemp Approval Program

marijuana plants

The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) announced its partnership with Roseville Farms to implement an industrial hemp program.

The program, which is led by Brian Pearson, an assistant professor of crop management at the UF/IFAS Mid-Florida Research and Education Center, "provides a science-based evaluation of industrial hemp varieties," the organization states in a news release.


Florida’s marijuana industry nearly doubled jobs, approached $1.23 billion in sales in 2020

glass front of store painted with marijuana leaves

The medical marijuana market in Florida created nearly 15,000 new jobs in 2020 and employs an estimated 31,444 state residents, according to a new analysis.

Florida recorded nearly $1.23 billion in marijuana sales in 2020, according to the report posted by Leafly and Whitney Economics. Florida’s sales were more than every state except California and Colorado, where marijuana is legal for adults.


Florida lawmakers may limit potency of medical marijuana this year

tabletop full of medical equipment, pills and cbd oli

For two years, patients, advocates and medical marijuana operators have been up in arms about lawmakers’ efforts to limit the levels of euphoria-inducing THC in smokable cannabis.

And for two years, the Senate has blocked the move.

But new Senate leadership, and a newly elected senator, could provide fertile ground for THC caps during the upcoming legislative session.

“It’s certainly something that’s on the table,” Senate President Wilton Simpson, R-Trilby, told reporters.


Florida Legislators Trying to Cap THC in Smokable Medical Marijuana

man handing a joint towards the camera

Why is it so difficult for lawmakers to accept that medical marijuana literally saves lives?

In fact, a study published in the British Medical Journal found “an increase from one to two dispensaries in a country is associated with an 17% reduction in opioid mortality rates.”


32% Cannabis Job Growth In 2020, Despite COVID-19

hand rolling joint

In four years, the cannabis industry’s job growth has increased 161%, quickly beating predictions from other industries 10 years from now.

Leafly’s fifth annual cannabis jobs report showed the cannabis industry to support 321,000 full-time equivalent jobs in 2021! An incredible number for an amazing and highly-deserving industry.


Home grown? Medical cannabis companies mostly out-of-state

green background with white marijuana leaf and a white medical cross

Once again, out-of-state business entities and owners took the majority of dispensary and processor permits for West Virginia’s long-awaited medical cannabis program.

Last week, the Department of Health and Human Resources’ Office of Medical Cannabis announced that 100 dispensaries between 32 companies with locations in 23 counties had been selected. The Office of Medical Cannabis announced the selection of 10 growers in October 2020 and 10 processors in November 2020.


Florida Democrats File Medical Marijuana Employee Protection Bill

Drug test form, with pen, and medical cup

While medical marijuana is legal in Florida, it can still cause a public employee to lose their job. South Florida Democrats Senator Tina Polsky and Representative Nicholas Duran, are trying to change that.

Boca Raton Democratic Senator Tina Polsky says when the state-approved medical marijuana, lawmakers left what she says is a loophole.

“So you’re allowed to use medical marijuana if you have a proper license but if you get drug tested at work having nothing to do with your performance you can be fired for using a legal substance,” said Polsky.


Legislature should legalize marijuana or voters will do it for them

holding up a marijuana leaf in from of American flag

Public and political support for legalizing recreational marijuana use has surged. Florida lawmakers need to accept that reality and come up with effective legislation. If not, the public will legalize pot via constitutional amendment. (Photo by strelov/Getty Images)

When it comes to legalizing marijuana in Florida, the question is no longer whether it should be legalized. The question is whether lawmakers want a role in that process.

We think they should. But first, lawmakers have to accept a simple reality.

It’s time to legalize recreational use of marijuana for adults.

There are plenty of reasons, not the least is that resistance has become futile. The political will to legalize pot is strengthening. A growing majority of Americans want it.


Hemp Program Lighting Up Florida Agriculture

fields of marijuana plants

Hemp is blazing among Florida’s agriculture inventory in the seven months since it was first allowed to be legally grown in the Sunshine State, Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried told business leaders Tuesday. Fried said 22,078 acres are currently licensed for hemp, nearly equal to the acreage in Florida of tomatoes, watermelon and snap peas, and double the strawberry production.


There’s a lot at stake for Florida as U.S. House puts legal marijuana back in play

miami sunset

The U.S. House of Representatives on Friday voted to decriminalize marijuana. Most Democrats supported the bill that would enact that change. Most Republicans did not. The bill is unlikely to gain traction in the Republican-controlled U.S. Senate.

Was Congress’ historic vote an early sign of momentum to legalize marijuana across the United States? Or is was it a low-stakes move on a splashy issue that’s unlikely to go anywhere?

Florida is home to plenty who are interested in the answer.


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