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Cannabis Briefs for June 8, 2021

June 8, 2021

•Connecticut’s state senate has passed a measure legalizing adult-use cannabis and sent it to the state house, which will race to pass it before the end of the legislative session tomorrow. The bill would allow those 21 and older to possess up to 1.5 ounces of cannabis, and establish a retail market with sales targeted to begin by May of next year. Connecticut’s department of consumer protection would issue licenses to growers, retailers, manufacturers and delivery services, with social equity applicants entitled to half of the licenses issued. Existing medical cannabis providers could become “hybrid” retailers, with the number of cannabis retailers not to exceed one per 25,000 residents until July 2024, at which time a new cap may be established.

•Nevada has approved cannabis consumption lounges within its borders, including two license types: retail cannabis consumption lounges and independent cannabis consumption lounges. The former is targeted to existing retailers, while the latter allows independent operators to partner with a retail provider to supply cannabis products for their venues.

•Illinois’ recreational cannabis sales reached new highs yet again in May on a total haul of $116.4 million. It’s a modest gain over April’s $114.9 million but nonetheless marks six consecutive monthly records dating back to last November when sales briefly stalled at $75 million. In May, in-state residents purchased $79.6 million worth of cannabis products—down approximately $300,000 from April—while out-of-state visitors drove growth by spending $36.8 million, up approximately $1.8 million from April. Consumers bought just over 2.5 million cannabis items, also a record.

•Canopy Growth has ended its relationship with the rapper Drake, according to a recent regulatory filing. The Canadian cannabis producer and Drake’s relationship was announced in November 2019 when they formed More Life, a joint venture focusing on the Canadian market. Canopy held a 40% share of More Life and supplied a cultivation facility in exchange. Though the information only recently became public, Canopy cut ties with Drake and More Life in March after taking around C$40 million impairments since the joint venture began.

•Philadelphia-based Deep Six CBD is now selling Delta 8 THC edibles including brownies, cookies, chocolate bars, and rice crispy treats. Delta 8 is a compound similar to regular THC (Delta 9) that provides a less intense experience and can be derived from non-THC producing hemp plants. This has placed the substance in a legal gray area and many state regulators have begun banning it. Nonetheless, Deep Six now offers their Delta 8 products wherever they are still able, in states including New Jersey, North Carolina, and California, though selection may vary.

•Chicago-based Cresco Labs has received approval for a $40 million expansion of its Yellow Springs, Ohio facility. Over the next five years, Cresco will construct two additional buildings at the site, which grows and processes medical cannabis, adding just under 100,000 square feet for a total of 144,000. The Yellow Springs facility currently employs around 80 people; by the end of the expansion, the company anticipates it will employ around 220 full-time staff.

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