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Cannabis Briefs for March 5, 2019

March 5, 2019

•Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart has joined with Canopy Growth in an advisory role to develop a line of CBD products for pets. The partnership also includes Sequential Brands Group, which works with Stewart on other products. Stewart’s television co-host Snoop Dogg helped get Stewart involved with Canopy, which sells three varieties of marijuana under the rapper’s Leafs by Snoop brand.

•U.S.-based cannabis retailer Green Growth Brands has appointed Randy Whitaker as COO to lead real estate, business development, and store design, among other store-focused responsibilities. Whitaker joins from Belk, Inc., a mall department store, where he was EVP, chief stores officer, and previously worked at Victoria’s Secret in a variety of roles including EVP, store operations. The move makes sense both because Green Growth needs someone to lead its effort to open 300 stores by year’s endand because Whitaker has previously worked closely with Green Growth CEO Peter Horvath when he was at Victoria’s Secret. Both Victoria’s Secret and Green Growth are part of DSW, Inc.

•Synthetic biology scientists at UC Berkeley have modified brewer’s yeast to produce cannabinoids—the active ingredients in cannabis—according to new research. By giving the cultures cannabis genes, the researchers prompted the yeast to produce specific cannabinoids like THC and CBD as well as other lesser known compounds like tetrahydrocannabivarin, or THCV, which is generally present in consumer cannabis only in small amounts. Due to the potential for highly efficient and cost-effective yeast-produced cannabinoids, the findings could significantly change the way the active components of cannabis are researched and produced. Already several companies are investing in the process as the future of the industry, including Ginkgo Bioworks, a Boston-based company that has received approximately $100 million in funding from Canadian cannabis giant Cronos Group.

•Correction: In last week’s post, it was incorrectly stated that The Green Solution has locations in Florida. In fact, the retailer has 17 locations throughout Colorado and two in Illinois. It has strategic partnerships in Florida but no physical locations there.

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