Nicotine, Tobacco, and Illicit Markets

China police solve counterfeit cigarette case. Nearly two in three cigarettes sold in Malaysia are now smuggled.

Dark side of Canada contraband tobacco is a danger-filled docudrama. Calgary man charged after over million illegal smokes seized.

UK pair jailed for killing man who stole cigarettes.

One in four Greek cigarettes is contraband.

Three states join New York City suit against USPS over foreign cigarette shipments. Appeals court upholds ruling against UPS for shipping illegal untaxed cigarettes. Governor Cuomo aims to crack down on illegal cigarette retailers. Brooklyn Zombieland bodega shut down by sheriff. Notorious Brooklyn deli closed by sheriff for non-payment of tobacco fines.

Virginia cigarette smuggler fined $20,000.

Interest in Illicit Purchase of Cigarettes Under a VLNC (Very Low Nicotine Content) Product Standard.  Tobacco Industry Data on Illicit Tobacco Trade: A Systematic Review of Existing Assessments. Single Cigarette Purchasers among Adult US Smokers. Cigarette taxes and cigarette smuggling by state, 2017.

Cannabis news round-up

Washington lawmakers bring bill to ban most cannabis concentrates. Oregon marijuana sales 420% stronger near Idaho. Cut taxes on the California legal marijuana market, pass AB1948. Need a legal marijuana shop in California? Grab your smartphone. Colorado representative pushes Senate to consider marijuana banking.

Medical marijuana shortages in Illinois reported at dispensaries since legalization. Passenger at Chicago airport steals marijuana from cannabis amnesty box. Weeks into Illinois legal marijuana, some south suburban police departments have “more questions than answers” on enforcement. Business leaders learn how Illinois marijuana legalization impacts Iowa workplaces. Illinois workplace policies based on legalization of recreational marijuana. Homewood, Illinois marijuana dispensary is popular with Indiana customers, who say they aren’t worried about the return trip home. Legal pot in Illinois: not that big a deal.

Michigan recreational marijuana sales are off to a sluggish start. Without a legal banking option, Michigan marijuana businesses face safety risks and other challenges. Testing the Michigan marijuana market: Business booms at safety compliance labs.

Second ballot initiative to legalize marijuana in Montana filed with state.

Is Kentucky marijuana legalization the answer to economic woes? Will Tennessee legalize marijuana? Why no recent bills have passed. Texas marijuana laws in 2020: Lots of de facto, not much de jure. Las Cruces, New Mexico mayor opposes marijuana legalization.

Could 2020 be the year of legal weed in Pennsylvania? Don’t hold your breath.

Connecticut lawmakers will make new push for marijuana legalization this year. Connecticut Governor Lamont poised to take lead on legalizing marijuana. Campaign to end pot prohibition in New Hampshire shifting gears in 2020.

New York Democrats say marijuana legalization shouldn’t be part of budget. Cuomo calls for legalizing, taxing New York marijuana in budget plan. New York debate over legalizing marijuana persists in 2020. Broad ideas, few details as New York pursues “regional symmetry” on cannabis. Legalizing marijuana grows on some Westchester, New York legislators.  Is 2020 the year for legal marijuana in New York, New Jersey? Hopes are high.

Marijuana legalization may hit 40 states: now what? Marijuana legalization is about to have a huge year. Marijuana Legalization Policies: Implications for Individual Behavior and Health. Terence Hallinan: Fighter for the people and for the legalization of marijuana. How legal weed shops feed the vaping crisis. This map shows medical marijuana’s effect on opioid prescriptions.

Medical marijuana reduces opioid prescribing rate

Cannabis news round-up

2019 marijuana laws in review and 2020 projections. What to expect from federal marijuana legalization in 2020. Federal marijuana reform will get another Congressional hearing next week. Where 2020 Democrats stand on marijuana. More dogs falling prey to THC poisoning. Mixed legality of marijuana on state, federal levels leaves gun owners in limbo. Legalizing marijuana may lead people to have more sex.

Alaska marijuana products found contaminated with unapproved pesticides. A Santa Ana, California cannabis shop says its new business model beats bans in other cities. Federal Reserve Bank examines Colorado marijuana industry’s growth.

Illinois new marijuana law is reason to hope America can eventually get legalization right. Illinois shops run out of marijuana just six days after start of legalization. Illinois marijuana dispensaries sold more than $10.8 million worth of recreational weed in the first five days of sales. Illinois marijuana legalization pretty uneventful so far for police. Governor Pritzker knows what angry Illinois taxpayers need: legal weed. Illinois pardons are a reminder of the scale of marijuana arrests, past and present. Using marijuana Illinois is legal—but it can still get you firedIllinois legal marijuana & firearm permits. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot addresses legal marijuana. Plan to license Chicago recreational marijuana consumption sites stalls. Now that marijuana is legal in Illinois , there are pot amnesty boxes at Chicago’s airports.

Paducah, Kentucky law enforcement uncertain of effects of legal Illinois marijuana. A St. Louis guide to legal marijuana in Missouri and Illinois. Town of Beloit, Wisconsin police issue first citation involving legal marijuana from IllinoisGovernor DeWine doesn’t think Ohio should legalize marijuana, even if nearby states have. Illinois legal marijuana and the Kansas black market.

Even with legal pot sales, Vermont black market could stay strong. Ten predictions for the Massachusetts marijuana industry in 2020. Connecticut legal marijuana votes likely in legislature this year despite earlier doubts. Rising challenges for Rhode Island legalized pot. Formerly anti-marijuana congressman Joe Kennedy III cosponsors comprehensive legalization bill.

Marijuana legalization measure officially qualifies for South Dakota 2020 ballot.

Arizona voters may get a chance to vote on marijuana legalization (again) this November. What MedMen’s exit from Arizona marijuana market means for legalization In 2020.

Supporters continue to push Indiana lawmakers to legalize recreational marijuana.

The future looks green for marijuana in TexasCampaign funding fight fuels push to legalize recreational marijuana in Florida. Legalize marijuana amendment should be kept off the ballot, Florida GOP leaders tell state Supreme Court. ACLU opposes Virginia governor’s marijuana decriminalization plan—for now.

Marijuana Legalization in the US: A Social Injustice. Recreational Marijuana Legalization and Changes in Marijuana Use and Cannabis Use Disorder, 2008–2016. Health considerations of the legalization of cannabis edibles. Legalization of marijuana should come with a public health campaign.

Legal pot takes a bite out of beer consumption in Canada. Top Mexico senator says marijuana legalization will be a priority this year. Changing how society views cannabis use can boost industry innovation.

Cannabis news round up

California marijuana tax hike puts future of legal market in spotlight amid worries over state industry’s viability. California cannabis industry sending SOS to state leaders. California officials side with marijuana company in new fight over home deliveriesCalifornia threatens landlords of unlicensed pot shops with prosecution. 

A serial tech entrepreneur is trying to create an Amazon-like platform for legal marijuana. 

Massachusetts made wrong decision in legalizing recreational marijuana.

Recreational marijuana goes on sale Jan. 1—legal weed is three weeks away. As businesses apply for right to sell legal weed in Illinois, social equity a top concern. You can apply to run an Illinois recreational pot shop starting Tuesday. Here’s how, where and what you’ll be able to buy in Illinois. Questions remain weeks until marijuana legalization in Illinois. Weeks before recreational marijuana is legal in Illinois, 5 things Northbrook residents should know about it locally. Chicago Police Department releases marijuana facts video on where you can, can’t smoke. Your pocket guide to Illinois legal weed. 

Recreational marijuana sales in Michigan exceed $1.6 million in first 8 days. Indiana prepares for possible influx of pot from Illinois and Michigan, considers decriminalizing small amounts.

Legalizing marijuana has majority support in Kansas, poll finds. Rep. Ryan Winkler discusses the push to legalize recreational marijuana in Minnesota. Iowa Senate leader: Raise tobacco age to 21; no to legalized marijuana. Wisconsin lawmakers seek to legalize marijuana amid concerns. 

Over 65% of Florida voters want recreational marijuana legalized.

Denver turned marijuana into money for after-school programs. Other cities are taking note. Colorado will get help improving marijuana energy efficiency from National Governors Association. Conservatives host forum opposing legal marijuana in Estes Park, Colorado

Tobacco, nicotine, illicit markets

Massachusetts flavor ban will feed illegal tobacco sales, stores say. Hundreds of Massachusetts convenience stores close in protest of proposed tobacco regulation. New York lawmakers propose statewide ban on menthol and other flavored cigarettes.

Big Tobacco could fill the void if vaping goes up in smoke. As Trump tackles vapes, African Americans feel stung by inaction on menthol cigarettes.

California and New York sue USPS for shipping of foreign cigarettes. Federal court slashes UPS fine for untaxed cigarettes to $97.6 million.

EU illegal tobacco trade halted after international operation. Slovakia busts biggest illegal cigarettes racket in Central Europe. Thousands of smuggled cigarettes discovered at Bosnia and HerzegovinaAustria border crossing. Cigarette smuggling in the UAE an EU headache. Cigarettes top 2018 list of EU counterfeit seizures.

Tenfold rise in Iran tobacco exports. An end in sight for Pakistan fight against illicit cigarettes?

Tobacco-smuggling family used train sets to import 2.5 million dodgy cigarettes from China and Hong Kong. Philippines to ask China, ASEAN neighbors to stop smuggling cigarettes. Plain packaging in Philippines.

Thailand temple turns smuggled cigarettes, liquor into pesticides for farmland.

Sri Lanka illegal cigarettes, beedi switching claims likely exaggerated. Illicit tobacco in Papua New Guinea. Explosion of Australia tobacco black market.

Tobacco sellers, industry push back against Alberta tax hikes.

Cannabis news round-up

On-site smoking of marijuana one step closer after Anchorage, Alaska Assembly kicks questions to voters. Youth pot use dropped in states after legalization, including Colorado. California governor signs marijuana tax fairness bill but vetoes cannabis in hospitals. Nevada governor to tighten legal marijuana marketplace. How a California company is buying up marijuana grow centers in Illinois —without a cultivation license.

Image result for breathalyzer for weed

Breathalyzer for weed could be a game changer for legalization efforts. Marijuana legalization can help end vaping deaths by allowing the FDA to do its job. I’m an American doctor. Here’s the truth about Juul, vaping and legalizing marijuana.

The push to unionize cannabis workers, explained. Immigration and the growing marijuana industry. 

A reporter’s experience at the High Times Cannabis Bazaar in DetroitIllinois has a marijuana referendum after all. High-stakes pot deal goes bust as Illinois recreational use starts. Supporter of marijuana legalization says Illinois lawmakers left out key provisions. Chicago City Council black caucus takes issue with rollout plan fr legal recreational marijuana. Rules murky on opportunity zones for Michigan cannabis businesses. Legal marijuana casts a little haze over Michigan workplace drug rules. Indiana mixed messages on prohibition. 

New Mexico governor’s working group releases legalization proposal 
Crossing Wisconsin state lines to buy legal pot. A Democratic takeover could make Virginia more marijuana-friendly. But legalization may still be years away. Recreational marijuana would create more than 100,000 jobs in Florida

What to know about proposed bill that would legalize marijuana in Pennsylvania. Poll shows Pennsylvania voters wary of legalizing marijuana. Public skeptical of Pennsylvania marijuana legalization survey. New Jersey marijuana legalization mailbag. Will New Jersey weed, vaping laws look like those in states next door? Governors hope so. Governors of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania adopt coordinated marijuana legalization plan.

Grading the presidential candidates on marijuana. How Republicans learned to love a pot bill. Cannabis legislation progresses, yet companies and cannabis investors are moving in reverse.  How lobbyists broke the logjam on cash and cannabis. SAFE banking needed for legal marijuana businesses. Banks and big security companies won’t touch cannabis cash—that’s where the soldiers come in.

The new weed on the block. Why we don’t know much about pot. Trump doesn’t inhale, but the cannabis industry is betting his supporters do. Former congressman who fought marijuana legalization joins cannabis company board. Progressives tend to believe legalizing pot is a good idea. Here are 7 reasons they should think twice. The Great American cannabis experiment. “We have to take the handcuffs off states.”

One year on, Canada legal cannabis market is down but not out. 

Cannabis news round-up

Scientists unveil weed breathalyzer, launching debate over next steps.

Mexico moves toward legalization of cannabis. Mexico cannabis users eagerly await legal marijuana. Mexico senator files marijuana legalization bill ahead of Supreme Court deadline. 

Mayor of Fall River, in enough trouble as it is, arrested for extorting six-figure bribes from marijuana vendors. Five months after opening, NETA Brookline is still one of America’s busiest pot shops—and not everyone is thrilled. Central Mass officials walk fine line in seeking ‘pot’ of gold. Massachusetts pot shop laws cry out in the reform wilderness. Here’s what to know about the pot shops opening in Massachusetts this week.  

California has completely crapped the bed rolling out legal marijuana 
Weedmaps to stop listing illegal cannabis retailers in California. (As predicted by Dr. Kleiman) nearly 3,000 illegal marijuana businesses found in California audit, dwarfing legal trade.

Legal marijuana is a positive amenity for new Colorado residents, study finds. Colorado official shares lessons from state’s marijuana legalization 
Colorado adds marijuana fungus testing requirements.

Bumps in the road to legalizing on-site inhalation of marijuana in Anchorage. After the Grand Opening: Assessing cannabis supply and demand in Washington State. Washington marijuana industry shakes Cheech-and-Chong stereotype, improves in public eye.

Former Elgin, Illinois chief now in Colorado says drivers smoking legal pot is “difficult for enforcement.” Bloomington, Ilinois City Council to consider task force on legal marijuana use within city. Illinois is having trouble preparing for recreational weed. Tight-knit Illinois female lawmakers behind legal marijuana have new nickname. Cook County and Code for America aim to speed up marijuana expungement as legalization nears. Champaign-Urbana, Illinois dispensaries plan for legal marijuana.

Michigan kicks off education sessions on recreational pot licensing

Why the Minnesota Democratic Farmer Labor Party is pushing marijuana legalization. Marijuana in Minnesota: Legalization issue sparks fierce debate. 

Marijuana legalization, impact of trade war dominate Louisiana Commissioner race. Looking to other states, officials expect marijuana will be legalized in Kentucky. Advocates say it’s not “if” marijuana gets legalized in Virginia—but when. Recreational pot drive draws big bucks in Florida. Florida Atty. General to challenge marijuana legalization referendum. Arizona support is high for legalizing marijuana, but is it high enough? Arizona marijuana ballot measure will advance with minor changes after review.  

New Jersey may have found a way to help legalize marijuana, lawmakers say. One way to pass legal marijuana in New Jersey? Cut out those gummy bears, top Democrat says. Toms River, New Jersey forms 24/7 opioid response team. New Jersey’s would-be pot purveyors watch investments go up in smoke.  What if New York legalizes marijuana but New Jersey doesn’t? Cops prepare for legal weed border battle.

Where the 2020 Democratic candidates for president stand on marijuana legalization. Here’s what legalization advocates would ask presidential candidates at the debate. Kamala Harris proposes loaning government funds to “disadvantaged” marijuana business owners. Here’s how Kamala Harris really prosecuted pot cases. Joe Biden says marijuana should remain illegal as a misdemeanor at Democrats debate why the most pro-marijuana Congress ever won’t deal with weed. Rep. Blumenauer on legalization.

Marijuana 1-to-3 Act would reclassify cannabis under federal law. Former anti-pot Clinton cabinet official files marijuana reclassification bill in Congress. Congressional Black Caucus focuses on legalization at conference. DEA wants 3,200 kg of marijuana legally grown in 2020. 
Vape safety requires legalizing marijuana. Cannabis industry calls for legalization and regulation to snuff out underground vapes. 
Are there any downsides to marijuana legalization? 

How marijuana is poised for a North American takeover. Legal pot efforts have turned states from narcs to pushers. Restorative justice must begin with America’s pot POWs. NIMBY? Not so fast: the effect of marijuana legalization on neighborhood crime. How hemp legalization has made it much harder to prosecute people for marijuana. The baffling legal gray zone of marijuana at the airport.   
 
Marijuana seizures increasing at Canada borders since legalization, police urge drivers to “think twice.” British Columbia still losing money on legalized marijuana sales. 11,000 marijuana plants seized in ‘extremely large grow operation’ in British Columbia. Ontario University launches online pot production course

Former New Zealand Prime Minister’s foundation urges ‘yes’ vote on marijuana legalization.

Tobacco, Nicotine, Illegal Markets

Which states have banned vapes? Federal judge gives tobacco manufacturers 10 months to comply with planned tighter FDA regulations. Judge Paul Grimm for the District of Maryland ruled that manufacturers have until May 11 to file pre-market applications for electronic cigarettes and cigars. FDA proposes stricter 10-month deadline for e-cigarettes. FDA ready to speed up its review of e-cigarettes, tobacco-related products.

As e-cigarette era heats up, PMI and Altria talk merger after decade apart.
PMI’s Marian Salzman: “I wasn’t bought.” Altria to test HNB in Atlanta.

Study linking vaping to heart attacks muddied amid spat between two tobacco researchers. Ex-FDA chief Scott Gottlieb: “Juul is going to be in a hard spot to ever get their product approved.”

Will new Vermont e-cigarette tax lead to a vaping black market?

Foundation for a Smoke Free World is using a contest to target school children.

Attempted hit: South Africa tobacco boss Simon Rudland kingpin of the ‘cheapies.’ The smoking gun: South Africa goes after illicit cigarette trade.

Smuggled North Korea cigarettes become increasingly popular in China. Production of illicit cigarettes poses high health risk in India. Cigarette smugglers make base in Bengaluru, India. The true cost of cheap cigarettes in Vietnam. Philippines destroys $42,000 worth of smuggled cigarettes. Duterte’s visit to China meant to bolster drive against illicit cigarettes.

Cheap whites: Inside Germany‘s globalized black market for smokes.

Don’t smoke these fake Greek cigarettes. You may hurt a pensioner. Malta black-market cigarette trade cost €12 million last year. Bootleg Turkish cigarettes fund PKK, minister says.

See how many cigarettes this immigrant was caught smuggling into Israel airport. Jordan government defends new anti-smuggling measures in wake of riots. Fake cigarette ring exposes Jordan corruption woes.

$60 million “lost” annually to illicit cigarettes in Papua New Guinea, say manufacturers who would prefer to sell legally.

Report breaks down Paraguay to Brazil cigarette smuggling trail.

Family of three smuggled cigarettes worth £67,000 through Birmingham Airport. UK shopkeeper found with thousands of illegal cigarettes claimed he was a heavy smoker. Sales of smuggled cigarettes in Blackpool “too lucrative to give up.”

We bought illegal cigarettes in the Vancouver (Canada) Downtown Eastside so you don’t have to. British Columbia seized 1.6 million cigarettes’ worth of contraband tobacco in 3 months. Crime Stoppers founder says contraband tobacco a big problem in Ontario.

Cannabis news round-up

Washington teens used less marijuana following legalization. Counterfeit cannabis products stoke black market for California weed.

Posh pot boutiques? Budtenders? Illinois police worry what’s down the road. Your weed dealer will be ok even after Illinois marijuana becomes legal. Lake in the Hills, Illinois village board weighs options for marijuana legalizationNiles, Illinois proposes plan to allow marijuana sales but restrict locations. Illinois suburban school administrators bracing for legal marijuana’s impacts. Naperville, Illinois residents rally against sale of recreational marijuana  Tennessee, whose governor opposes legalizing marijuana, pulls out of Illinois weed business.

Marijuana faces second phase of legalization in small-town Michigan. FBI warns of public corruption threat in Michigan legal marijuana industry. Weedmaps may stop advertising illicit marijuana businesses in Michigan.

Governor Walz wants Minnesota to be ready to roll on legal marijuana. Florida overwhelmingly supports legalizing recreational marijuana. Don’t count on tax revenues from Pennsylvania legal marijuana sales, study says. Locals say balderdash.

Pro-legalization primary challenger slams Rep. Steny Hoyer’s marijuana opposition.  Pot industry underestimates old-school dealers. Trump reiterates his administration will let states legalize marijuana. White House drug officials say legal marijuana is up to states. Nine questions about marijuana legalization you were too embarrassed to ask. Do we really want a Microsoft of marijuana?

Mexico cannabis users eagerly await legal marijuana.  Canadians continues to buy cannabis illegally.

Cannabis news round-up

California legal marijuana will outsell the black market in 5 years, forecast says. Seven years after legalization, Colorado battles an illegal marijuana market. Police raid illegal weed dispensary in Los Angeles. The Museum of Weed in Los Angeles is a marketing hit.

How an overlooked facet of the Illinois weed law could trip up two of the industry’s biggest players. Illinois hazy new law legalizing recreational use of marijuana. Marijuana tax revenues may not be the long-term answer to Michigan budget woes. Legalization measure advances one step in South Dakota.

DC mayor reiterates calls for recreational marijuana legalization. DC is ready to make legal marijuana a boon for big business: what about for racial justice? Did Ohio Governor Mike DeWine just legalize marijuana? Not quite.
Pennsylvania anti-recreational marijuana crowd of “more than 80” gathers against Senate proposal. Maryland lawmakers have a lot to learn on legalizing marijuana.

Here are the details on the Arizona recreational cannabis ballot measure for 2020. Opinion: data back up opposition to New Mexico legal marijuana. New Mexico legalizing marijuana job numbers may be “decent”. ABA support for legalizing marijuana may impact Texas. Petition to make recreational marijuana use legal in Florida filed. Florida lawyer who claimed pot was legal must pay arrested clients $370,000.

New Jersey marijuana legalization: Senate President on legal weed vote, ballot question. How much will New Jersey really make from taxing legal weed? New York and Connecticut governors talk marijuana legalization on fishing trip. Fate of legalized pot in Connecticut remains hazy.

High on pot taxes: Is there a revenue jackpot for states that legalize marijuana?

Elizabeth Warren’s plan for indigenous nations includes marijuana legalization. Bernie Sanders calls for legalizing marijuana and curtailing asset forfeiture in wide-ranging criminal justice plan. Congressman says marijuana could be legal sooner if Trump stops tweeting. Conservative group ALEC floats marijuana banking and CBD bills for states to consider.
What is the MORE Act, and how could it change marijuana policy forever?
How will cannabis legalization affect health, safety, and social equity outcomes? It largely depends on the 14 Ps. Recent progression in the legalization of marijuana has left employers dazed and confused. Here’s how many investors use pot as marijuana legalization gets broad support.

SAM leader questions most recent research on weed and opioid mortality. Federal data show youth marijuana use isn’t increasing under legalization. The FBI is probing the pot industry, but not for the reason you might expect. Weedmaps says it will ban advertisements from unlicensed cannabis sellers. Legal sellers applaud.

France’s cannabis legalization debate misses one crucial point.