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Cannabis Briefs for April 26, 2022

April 26, 2022

•Multi-state cannabis player Curaleaf is launching BlueKudu infused chocolates at all 45 Curaleaf locations in Florida. The expansion marks BlueKudu’s first launch outside of Colorado and Curaleaf’s entrance into Florida’s infused chocolate category. The product range includes Milk Chocolate (sativa), vegan Dark Chocolate Mint (hybrid) and Milk Chocolate (indica), each with 100mg of THC, selling at around $25 a bar. The expansion of BlueKudu follows Curaleaf’s launch of Select Live Rosin and Select X Bites in Florida.

•Adult-use cannabis sales in Massachusetts are closing in on a lifetime total of $3 billion, according to data from the state’s Cannabis Control Commission. Since launching in November 2018, retailers have reported $2.87 billion, as of April 10. Monthly sales generally sit comfortably in the $110-$120 million range, with individual weekday sales of around $3.5 million that spike close to $5 million on Friday and Saturday. As of March 28, Massachusetts had approved 887 cannabis licenses. The state collected $112.4 million in cannabis excise taxes last year.

•Convenience chain company Alimentation Couche-Tard, best known as the owner of Circle K, is upping its stake in Canadian cannabis retailer Fire & Flower. Set to happen this week, the company plans to exercise warrants to acquire more than 8.2 million Fire & Flower shares, increasing its position in the company by approximately 15% to bring it to 35.3% ownership. Couche-Tard has taken a number of bites out of Fire & Flower going back to its first investment in 2019. Fire & Flower has a licensing deal in place to bring its brand to the U.S. once federal regulations allow. Fire & Flower’s consolidated revenue for its fiscal year 2021 increased 37% to $175.5 million.

•Michigan set a record for cannabis sales last Wednesday on the unofficial cannabis holiday 4/20. Michigan consumers turned out to buy 4,619 pounds of flower, more than twice the amount sold on the same day last year. Despite significant price drops over the last year, sales totaled $15.6 million for the day, up from $10.7 million in 2021. Over 140,000 vape cartridges were sold to recreational customers, the head of Michigan’s Cannabis Regulatory Agency, Andrew Brisbo, told The Detroit News. Since launching sales in December 2019, Michigan has opened nearly 500 recreational cannabis retail locations.

•Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer promised activists that he would introduce his federal legalization bill before the August recess. Speaking to the National Cannabis Policy Summit, he said “comprehensive federal cannabis legislation is critical… It’s not easy to get done, but we are going to do it. I promise to keep working until we get it done.” The Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act (CAOA), the comprehensive cannabis reform bill backed by Cory Booker and Ron Wyden in addition to Schumer, was originally planned to be released this month.

•Toronto-based cannabis distributor Humble & Fume’s U.S. subsidiary has opened operations in California. It has signed exclusive distribution agreements with Canndescent Brands for their labels including Canndescent, Volcannx, Goodbrands, Baker’s Cannabis Co., and Justice Joints. The company plans to hire around 65 employees within the year in order to provide next-day delivery to all major metro areas in California. Humble & Fume recently brought on Jakob Ripshtein, previously of Aphria and Diageo, as chairman.

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