Cannabis stocks increase mainly after FDA chairman promised CBD regulatory talks in April


Cannabis inventories were up mainly on Thursday, as investors compared the latest financial results of the sector and the comments of the head of the US Food and Drug Administration on CBD regulatory projects.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said public meetings would be held in April for stakeholders to discuss how best to regulate hemp-derived CBD, legalized in December in the 2018 Farm Bill. The FDA is now in charge of regulating CBD, a non-psychoactive ingredient in cannabis that has not been included in the legalization of hemp because of the lack of research on its long-term effects on human health.

It is widely accepted that CBD has welfare properties and many cannabis producing companies are considering launching foods, beverages and cosmetics containing them, but the FDA has stated that it can not do so without its preliminary authorisation. Gottlieb said at a hearing before a House Credits Subcommittee that the FDA would establish a working group of experts to inform about the regulatory options for the substance, as stated by Marijuana Moment, a website that collaborates with activists, industry representatives and policy makers. cannabis.

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"I understand Congress wants the DBC to be accessible," he said, although it was "not a simple problem." The FDA has already approved a drug against CAD to treat a very serious type of child. epilepsy, but relying on traditional clinical trials, long and costly process that companies would prefer to avoid.

Gottlieb suggested that the FDA could design a model in which high-concentration CBD would remain a pharmaceutical product, while CBD at a lower concentration could potentially be added to food or used as a dietary supplement. This separation is necessary because "we want to retain the incentive to study CBD as a pharmaceutical," Gottlieb said.

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The commissioner conceded that the federal ban on cannabis sent medical research on cannabis abroad. The drug against epilepsy, epediolex, was developed by the British company GW Pharma, which has the ability to use its government license to grow cannabis specifically for drug research and development.

The marijuana law was also reintroduced in Congress on Thursday, allowing lawmakers to consider reform to end the current cannabis ban by the federal government and eliminate criminal penalties for possession, cultivation, manufacturing, import and cannabis export.

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"Hopefully this legislation will get the serious attention it deserves," said Aaron Smith, executive director of the National Cannabis Industry Association, in a statement. "The country is ready and willing to go beyond prohibition, begin to examine its impact on marginalized communities, and explore the economic potential of small regulated companies to replace criminal markets."

Among the individual shares, the shares of MedMen Enterprises Inc.

MMNFF, -6.65%

2.7%, after the loss of the company in the second quarter has widened compared to the previous year. Revenues reached $ 29.9 million compared to $ 3 million for the same period last year. Michael Kramer, the new chief financial officer, said at the call of the results that he had imposed a few weeks ago a freeze on company expenses, which was well received by the analysts.

Shares of Canopy Growth Corp.

GSC + 3.43%

CANNABIS, + 3.81%

increased by 4.6%. The company announced that it has signed a new partnership with Martha Stewart, a household guru, who will act as a consultant to develop a new line of products related to CAD. Stewart already has a TV cooking show with cannabis advocate and rapper Snoop Dogg.

John Torrens, a professor of entrepreneurial practice at Syracuse University's Whitman School of Management, said celebrity approval of cannabis should send a strong signal to investors that it is gaining credibility quickly.

"This Canopy Growth initiative advances the branding initiative in this space," Torrens wrote in e-mail comments. "CBD and other phytocannabinoids have many applications for health and wellbeing and we only see the top of the iceberg in terms of availability in the next few years. This market is ready to explode. "

Canopy is committed to investing between $ 100 and $ 150 million in a hemp-based industrial park in New York State that aims to be the first of its kind in the United States.

Elsewhere in the sector, shares of Cronos Group Inc.

CRON, + 1.55%

CRON, + 1.68%

increased by 2.6%, Aphria Inc.

APHA + 1.95%

was up 3.1%, Tilray Inc.

TLRY, + 2.75%

gained 2.6% and Hexo Corp.

hexo, + 0.86%

increased by 1.2%.

Aurora Cannabis Inc.

CBA -0.13%

CBA + 0.20%

was up 0.9%.

The ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF

MJ + 0.04%

up 0.3% and Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences ETF

HMMJ, + 1.00%

was up 1.4%.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average

DJIA, -0.18%

and the S & P 500

SPX, -0.16%

were down about 0.1%.

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