Cannabis has been illegal in Japan since 1948.
Under the current legislations defined by the Cannabis Control Law, its use and possession can be punished with five years of imprisonment on top of heavy financial penalties. In addition, anyone found involved in the cultivation, sale or transport of the drug can land in jail for about 7 to 10 years and made liable to pay a hefty fine to authorities.
These stringent policies have led to a lot of stigmatization of cannabis in Japan. According to some legalization advocates in the country, this stigma is so strong that it can be analogous to pillory surrounding criminals.
This criminalization of the plant has led to a complete shift in social attitudes towards it. Therefore, in order to bring about policy reforms in the industry, many advocates consider raising public awareness about the drug as the most vital course of action.
History of cannabis use in Japan
A historical review of cannabis use in Japan reveals that it was cultivated in the region since the pre-Neolithic period. This means that it was associated with the culture of the region since thousands of years.
If that period seems too ancient to consider, data from 1954 can be far more convincing. According to statistics reported in Medical Cannabis Network Quarterly, there were about 37,313 hemp farmers in Japan in 1954, compared to barely 37 in 2016.
Therefore, it can be established that cannabis was a popular agricultural product in the country back in the day.
Before its US influenced legal ban in 1948, the plant was widely used in the country. It was also considered sacred. The followers of the Shinto religious tradition believed that cannabis had the power of purification. They also respected it as a symbol of the sun, the inspiration for the Japanese flag.
In addition to this, cannabis was widely used in producing fiber and various other products. According to Junichiro Takayasu, director of Japan’s only cannabis museum, “The cannabis-fiber weaving technique used by Japanese craftsmen is very conscientious handwork, and I think it is important to carry on the tradition. The clothes from genuine cannabis fiber are cool in summer and warm in the winter, which is perfect for the Japanese climate.”
Struggling for cannabis acceptance and legalization
Despite of the strict laws surrounding the cannabis industry, groups of legalization advocates are emerging in the country. Green Zone Japan and Japanese Clinical Association of Cannabinoids are among the most prominent names that are striving to secure a legal status for cannabis in the country.
Aim of Green Zone Japan
Green Zone Japan is a medical cannabis advocacy group that came into being in 2017. The main aim of the founders Naoko Miki and Yuji Masakata is to bring up to date medical cannabis information to Japanese medical professionals and the general public in order to educate them on the subject.
In a recent move towards its legalizing efforts, Green Zone is adding subtitles to a documentary called CBD Nation. The documentary will be virtually screened for members all year long for maximum viewership.
Aim of Japanese Clinical Association of Cannabinoids
Japanese Clinical Association of Cannabinoids is the official partner of the International Association for Cannabinoid Medicines. It was established in 2015 to aid healthcare workers in conducting cannabinoid researches in Japan.
They are working to analyze and evaluate CBD clinical researches and the effects of foods infused with it.
Businesses using cannabis derivative, CBD
The lack of awareness about therapeutic benefits of CBD and the stringent laws have negatively affected businesses in the country.
It was among the most important agricultural crops when a complete ban was placed on it. The resulting outrage and disapproval by the most hard hit farmers forced the government to revise the laws. What we see today is the “revised” version due to the retaliation.
Today, cultivation of hemp is still possible, but under the strict control of the government. Growers have to obtain a cultivation license and permission before they can begin plantation. The bureaucratic process for obtaining and maintaining a license is so long and tiresome that agricultures are discouraged.
Despite of this, Japan is advancing small steps towards cannabis normalization. Entrepreneurs like Kota Shimomura, owner of CBD Coffee in Tokyo’s Meguro Ward, are giving new business ideas and clientele to the cannabis industry. Due to the increasing demand, he believes that the CBD market will surpass tobacco in the nest five years. He is also planning to open a second location in Shinjuku by the end of this year.
Then there is another line of beauty products launched by Priyanka Yoshikawa, a model and former Miss World Japan. “I wanted to have my own skin care line for a long time. And I saw that no one was really doing a good, CBD-based skin care line.” She also believes that CBD will provide the much needed relief to the workaholic population of Japan. It will allow them some “relaxation and one-on-one time”.
This industry is expected to bring in a lot of job opportunities for it agricultural revival. According to Masakata, a neurologist by profession and volunteer at Green Zone, this revival will bring young people to come back to the countryside.
Mayor To Cut the Ribbon on Cannabis ‘Cookies’ Inauguration
Michigan is seeing an increase in activities and businesses trading in marijuana. As the marijuana economy grows, Cookies is the newest store that opens its doors to Kalamazoo city. The Cookies cannabis store will be functional from Friday, Feb. 26.
The mayor for the city of Kalamazoo, David Anderson, is the chief guest for the ribbon-cutting ceremony. The store opening will be in the morning, according to the Cookies Cannabis Official press release. Also, the address for the store is 2712 Portage Street.
Medicinal Cannabis At The Curbside
The Cannabis Cookies store will not be offering curbside sales on its first day. For medicinal marijuana sales, curbside medical sales will be active from Saturday, Feb. 27, the press release further adds.
Cookies is an international cannabis lifestyle brand founded by California rapper and entrepreneur, Berner.
Cookies CEO Berner has high hopes for the Midwest. He thinks that stores like his will boost the marijuana economy and can support the economy even during slumps. Cookies has pinpointed the region as pivotal going forwards. The partnership with Gage Cannabis is also proving great for them as the demand for cannabis and medical marijuana is increasing day by day.
The expansion is driven by key partnerships and a high influx of consumers. Consumers are not only driving up demand in Kalamazoo but in the whole of Michigan. Cookies hopes to serve this rising demand as it strikes new partnerships throughout the region.
Texas Med Store Starts Selling Cannabis-Infused Gummies As Medical Marijuana
As more and more states legalize cannabis use, dispensaries are finding new ways to morph cannabis into daily-use things. The popularity of medical marijuana is undoubtedly off the charts. In another of such events, one of the state’s dispensaries now offers medical marijuana-infused gummies.
The Lone Star state is the second largest of all the states, falling behind Alaska. The fact that Elon Musk has set up his residence in the state has made it even more popular. Surterra Wellness, a well-known Florida-based marijuana company, is also operating in Texas. with a dispensary in Austin — launched its line of Surterra Wellness is bringing cannabis-infused lineup of edibles to cater to the needs of patients and cannabis consumers alike. This will provide patients with THC in a less intimidating form. The president of Surterra Wellness is positive about the impact this lineup of edibles can have.
Gummy Bears Carrying Marijuana
Mr. Ruark, the Surterra Wellness president, believes that the popularity of gummies makes them ideal to administer medicinal marijuana. Gummies are by far the most popular dosing form in medical markets across the United States. In addition to the popularity of gummies, they also contain terpenes. Terpenes provide a plethora of therapeutic properties and is an all natural extract.
They also give medical marijuana users a new way of ingesting THC. The many flavors that gummy bears are available, make it a great option to use for the deliverance of medical marijuana.
Medicinal marijuana, although legal in Texas, is under extreme regulation and restrictions. Residents must opt into the Texas Compassionate Use Program that allows subscribers to use cannabis products for medicinal purposes. This programme was created in 2015 and is caters to patients of medical conditions such as epilepsy, seizures, terminal cancer, multiple sclerosis, incurable neurological disorders, autism and ALS.
Now, with the advancements in the way marijuana is covering ground, cannabis advocates in Texas are pressuring legislators to expand the program. There are expectations that the expansion will include patients suffering from PTSD.
Ruark believes that people are largely unaware of the medicinal programme in Texas. Also, he believes these gummies will change this. He thinks that his company can raise awareness about the state’s medical marijuana program.
Increasing The Cannabis Family by 2 Million
Increased reach will allow two million patients to use it who qualify for it even now but don’t use it because they don’t know about the program.
The president of the dispensaries wants everyone to benefit from the nature’s gift. He wants everyone to reap the benefits of cannabis. It may be of special benefit for veterans in dealing with PTSD after their return back to a normal life.
These lovely gummy treats come in a bottle that costs $60 and contains 200 milligrams of THC in total.
Cannabis Antibiotics Can Be Solution For Treating Drug-Resistant Diseases
The cannabis plant contains multiple components of varying benefits, of which some constituents are psychoactive while others are non-psychoactive and have other pharmacological impacts. Because of the pharmacological benefits, researchers are working to formulate cannabis antibiotics.
According to the research of The University of Queensland, CBD is a component present in marijuana, is non-psychoactive, and is capable of killing bacteria. It is useable in antibiotics due to its ability to kill bacteria responsible for gonorrhea, meningitis, and legionnaires.
Moreover, according to studies, there is a possibility that drug-resistance diseases can cause more than 10 million deaths per year by 2050. The UN warns that there is an urgent need to deal with drug-resistant illnesses. Furthermore, finding solutions to the problems of drug resistance must be of utmost priority.
Drug resistance is growing, leading to critical problems shortly. According to neurologists, within five years, the NHS will successfully develop effective cannabis-antibiotics. Moreover, the treatment of drug-resistant diseases will be possible with the use of this marijuana containing antibiotics.
Cannabis In Antibiotics
CBD is the cannabidiol, a major non-psychoactive and second-most prevalent component of the active ingredients of marijuana. Two institutions researched using cannabis in antibiotics. The institutions that collaborate for research are the University of Queensland and Botanix Pharmaceuticals Limited.
In their research, researchers examined how the CBD of cannabis penetrates through the protective membranes of multiple bacteria. Moreover, not only does the CBD enter the bacteria, but it also kills them.
Of the bacteria through which CBD penetrates are bacteria for meningitis, legionella, and Neisseria gonorrhea. The legionella bacteria cause legionnaire’s disease characterized by cough, shortness of breath, high fever, muscle pain, nausea, vomiting, and headache.
The researchers found that CBD was able to break down the biofilm of the bacteria. Biofilm is a slimy build-up of bacteria released by it to survive against antibiotic treatment. Moreover, the biofilm’s slimy layer is similar to a dental plaque on the surface.
What Is In The Future For Cannabis?
Cannabis-infused antibiotics may be available in the market. According to Professor Mike Barnes, pretty-soon general practitioners will start prescribing CBD pills to treat infectious diseases. Research on marijuana is progressing fast. Moreover, there are chances of formulating much better cannabis products for medicinal use.
According to Mike Barnes, it is high time that individuals understand the medical benefits of marijuana and take advantage of the plant to its full capacity. Moreover, the marijuana plant is useable in various ways to improve the condition of patients.
The new research led by the University of Queensland and Botanix Pharmaceutical Limited is helpful in the subject. However, further research is vital for developing much better, safer, and effective drugs containing CBD of marijuana.
More Studies Essential For A Better Future
According to Professor Mike Barnes, if CBD is placed next to bacteria in a plate, the cannabidiol will kill the bacteria right away. However, if a tablet containing CBD is on the same plate as the bacteria, the effect of CBD will be slower.
The professor is confident that with further research on the subject, better medicine formulation can occur for treating drug-resistant diseases. Moreover, UK regulators can formulate something that can fight against antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea. Furthermore, the formation of antibiotics for drug-resistant gonorrhea is the utmost priority of the World Health Organization.
Once the formulation of the cannabis-containing antibiotics is complete, the drugs will need the approval to conduct preclinical-trials and clinical trials. After completing the clinical trials and research investigations, the authorities will consider the drugs for approval after which they will be available in the market.
Deep studies and research investigations enable the formulation of a more effective formulation. The quicker the cannabis containing antibiotics gets approval, the sooner they will be in the market for treating drug-resistant bacterial diseases.
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