The Broccoli Report
Monday, January 18, 2021
Time to read: 4 minutes, 38 seconds. 929 words.
Good morning, Report readers!
As we commence another work week during very distracting, very major national events, I urge everyone reading this to pause, take a deep breath, and relax those shoulders. You’ve got this. After a theatrical retreat to Bridgerton, this blessing from Missy Elliot, and a fresh eighth of GMO Cookies from Utokia Farms, I’m as ready as I can be. That said, we might as well keep things simple today with nothing but news.
Before we get started, a reminder that our ears and inbox are always open for brand launches and announcements, especially for novel, category-busting products. Send your breaking news to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For paid subscribers, I’ll see you Friday for a candid chat with an indie brand that takes vertical-integration to a new level. We’ll talk about what it takes to simultaneously navigate THC and CBD products, cultivation and topicals, regulated retail and hemp e-commerce, and much more. Subscribe here to receive every Broccoli Report.
"We must use time creatively, in the knowledge that the time is always ripe to do right."– Martin Luther King, Jr., in a letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963.
One-Hitters: Cannabis News at a Glance
Possibly the most contradictory reaction from a conservative state government to their constituents’ approval of cannabis continues to play out in South Dakota. Governor Kristi Noem—who filed a lawsuit almost immediately to get the ballot thrown out on a technicality—has issued an executive order to push her legal challenge forward. Following Noem’s lead, the State Bar of South Dakota recently published a formal statement warning attorneys that representing clients in the cannabis industry could risk their ability to practice law in the state.
On the other hand, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont announced that legalizing adult-use cannabis is a priority for the 2021 legislative session during his recent State of the State address.
Following the unsettling headlines about the lack of a single Illinois dispensary majority-owned by a person of color, lawmakers plan to double the number of retail licenses in the state, making room for 75 eligible spots for minority applicants. I imagine that the lawsuits from high-scoring minority applicants that followed the initial round of licensing will now be swapped by white owners suing for equal access to these sought-after slots. Governor J.B. Pritzker’s people are still hashing out the details, but it’s a sobering illustration of how costly and time-consuming it can be to amend the flaws of hasty roll-outs.
A new assessment of peer-reviewed research on cannabis cultivation and the environment highlights areas of concern for the industry. While researchers acknowledged limits to the data available, their analysis points to increased groundwater extraction since legalization and troubling discrepancies between federal and state regulation of certain pesticides. Most alarmingly, their energy consumption estimates imply that, as a whole, domestic cannabis grows emit as much CO2 as the rest of the entire U.S. agriculture industry combined.
Rose Delights collaborates with Aster Farms on their latest seasonal flavor: Autumn Bright Nectarine with Juniper Berry, infused with OG and Blood Orange Flower Rosin from Aster Farms and concocted by ChefVirgilio Martínez Véliz of Central Restaurant in Lima, Peru.
Chelsea Leyland, a DJ and leading medical cannabis activist who joined me on a panel at Broccoli’s In Bloom event in 2019, is about to launch a new brand, Looni. Leyland has served as a wealth of resources for those turning to cannabis for relief from epilepsy and endometriosis, so we can’t wait to see how these products work with bodies and monthly/life cycles.
A group of California cannabis brands join forces with the Keep A Breast nonprofit on a statewide breast cancer awareness campaign (and this super cute campaign video). In addition to a new passionfruit gummy from Kiva, collaborative marketing to support Keep a Breast’s efforts to educate and empower young people to advocate for their own health, Kiva has committed to donating $10,000 to the nonprofit.
Edie Parker Flower drops a new lineup of their luxury stash jars, rolling trays, and a lighter in a special colorway: white with little green flowers all over. Extremely cute, and—maybe because they remind me of clovers from afar—I imagine any sesh using buds stored in these will be extra lucky.
Although The Netherlands’ tolerant stance on cannabis cemented its popularity as a tourist destination, it also led to city centers congested with broke college students who don’t spend money outside of consumption-friendly coffee shops. Amsterdam city government is ready to change that, with a proposal designed to curb “low-budget tourism” and criminal activity by banning non-residents from Amsterdam coffee shops starting as soon as 2022.
Glass House Group CEO Kyle Kazan pens a letter to Trump urging him to pardon Parker Coleman Jr., who is currently serving a 60-year prison sentence for a nonviolent marijuana conspiracy offense. While Kazan edits the header to address President Biden, you can learn more about how you can help free Mr. Coleman here.
In attempts to legitimize the unregulated hemp industry, a California assemblywoman is calling on the Department of Food and Agriculture, the State Department of Public Health, and California’s Bureau of Cannabis Control to coordinate the implementation of a real, regulated hemp industry. The proposed bill asks for a testing framework, defined dosage limits, and a crackdown on inflated health claims. That all sounds great. The odd part is it only allows for hemp to be in food, beverages, and cosmetics—no smokables.
To a peaceful week,