A Message from Bridget: April 2021

 In A Message from Bridget, Legalization

Image: In loving memory of Charlotte Figi (October 18, 2006 – April, 7, 2020). Courtesy Charlotte’s Web.

 

Greetings from CeresMED,

April is always a big month for the cannabis industry. This year is extra special because it is the 50th Anniversary of the phenomenon known as “420.” mThe origin story of 420 has varied throughout the years, but the theme remains consistent: it is a celebration of the cannabis plant and the culture that has grown up around it. 

Cannabis means different things to different people. At CeresMED, our focus has always been on creating awareness about its therapeutic benefits and expanding legal access. Education has been our primary tool to achieve this. Maintaining an open mind and a collaborative spirit has been critical to our success. The legalization of cannabis in Vermont for both medical and adult-use required the engagement of multiple stakeholders: lawmakers, law enforcement, healthcare professionals, registered patients, cannabis reform advocates and the citizenry at large. Each came to the table with a different agenda. Compromise has been the lubricant for progress and will continue to be so as we move forward. We celebrate our community’s flexibility and commitment to the dismantling of cannabis prohibition today and every day.

The first Ceres store at SVW in Brattleboro.

This week, Governor Scott nominated three Vermonters to sit on our state’s inaugural Cannabis Control Board (CCB). Once confirmed by the state Senate, they will start building the framework for the adult-use market. This will include setting fee structures and developing the application process for the different licenses and proposing rules and regulations to define compliance. Recommendations by the CCB will require confirmation by the legislature. The CCB will also assume regulation of the Vermont Marijuana Registry (VMR), removing it from the Department of Public Safety. Depending on the passage of bill S.25 this legislative session, the transition could happen as soon as June of this year.

We support this accelerated transition schedule in S.25 for two primary reasons; 1) We feel that the CCB will benefit from the knowledge housed within the VMR, which has been generated over the course of 8 years of operation. This includes the experience of registered patients, licensed operators and the administrative staff at the VMR. 2) Act 164 contains language that states that the CCB “shall strive for consistency with rules adopted for cannabis establishments.” We believe that there is an opportunity here for the rules in the VMR to become less restrictive. We look forward to working with the CCB to expand access to the medical program.

Charlotte Figi in 2014. (Courtesy Associated Press)

This month we are also celebrating the life of Charlotte Figi, the brave little girl whose story of success using high CBD medical cannabis to minimize seizures and other symptoms associated with Dravet’s syndrome took the nation by storm. We first learned of Charlotte in Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s 2013 documentary, Weed. It was a turning point, leading to the broader acceptance of medical cannabis and the eventual legalization of industrial hemp. For us, it led to the birth of Ceres Natural Remedies. Read more about that here. Charlotte tragically passed away on April 7th, 2020, due to complications associated with COVID-19. Ceres is a proud sponsor of the event to honor her memory. Tickets are free, but the Realm of Caring is accepting donations to support the good work that they do. Please consider a small donation as part of your 420 celebrations.

In Good Health,

Bridget Conry

Director of Brand Experience CeresMED and Ceres Natural Remedies

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