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US Growing Record Amount of Marijuana; Application Approvals Still Sluggish

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While the biggest marijuana research crop to be grown in the U.S. in five years is well in bloom, the government has yet to offer any clarity on the applications put forward on the benefits of cannabis. This research could prove to be critical in the expansion of opportunities within the industry and the information gained from this research could ultimately boost national reform measures.

With plans to grow 2,000 kilograms (4,409 pounds) of marijuana this year at the University of Mississippi, The National Institute on Drug Abuse still holds the only government contract for producing marijuana in the US. The NIDA said that the yields, after harvest, would be divided between high THC and high CBD variations to explore renewed interest in the application of CBD to certain medicines in the treatment of some health conditions. While the crops being grown at the University of Mississippi could assist researchers in their investigations, they are requesting that other producers be allowed to supply crops for a full scope of the potential of the plant. But with the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) still taking their time on processing more than two dozen current grower applications it seems that nothing will change any time soon.

In May this year, a two partied collective of legislative policymakers tried to speed up operations but were met with resistance and to date, no action has been taken and with DEA spokeswoman Katherine Pfaff rebuffing the June 2019 Scottsdale Research Institute in Arizona’s US Court appeal application saying that “We are still working through the process and those applications remain under review.”

There may, however, be a glimmer of hope on the horizon as in separate instances two partied collectives of US senators have joined the push to include more producers to reinforce the research of marijuana and CBD via the introduction of a new federal bill.

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