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Wednesday, May 19, 2021

DEA Finally Ends Federal Monopoly on Poor Quality Research-Grade Cannabis

"Socalj" For Borderland Beat

Since 1968, only one marijuana grower, with a reputation of producing poor-quality ~8% THC cannabis has been allowed to grow for scientific research purposes.

Late last week, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) quietly made an announcement that’s expected to have a profound and long-lasting impact on cannabis research and development in the United States and big step towards federal legalization.

In its statement, the DEA said it was “nearing the end of its review of certain marijuana grower applications, thereby allowing it to soon register additional entities authorized to produce marijuana for research purposes.”

In other words, the feds are ending their monopoly on cannabis grown for scientific purposes. And that means American researchers can, for the first time ever, conduct studies using real-world cannabis instead of the terrible low-THC schwag they’ve been forced to use for decades.

There are several reasons why this is a big deal. Since 1968, the only federally approved supplier of cannabis for research purposes in the United States has been a 12-acre farm run by the National Center for the Development of Natural Products at the University of Mississippi. That production has been exclusively for the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), which maintains control over the production and distribution of research-grade cannabis in the United States.

Over the years, the Mississippi weed farm has earned a notorious reputation for growing some of the worst cannabis in the world. Leafly’s Ben Adlin documented the shockingly poor quality.

Smoking 25+% THC, Studying 8% THC

The poor quality and low potency of government-grown cannabis has been an ongoing issue for U.S. cannabis researchers. The inadequacy of NIDA cannabis has led to some high-profile academic disputes, lawsuits and national headlines, as well as well-founded accusations that the DEA was dragging its feet on the issue. In 2017 Rick Doblin, founder and executive director of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) declared that NIDA was “completely inadequate as a source of marijuana for drug development research.”

For years, NIDA and the DEA have promised to open up the sourcing of federally-approved research cannabis. But nothing happened. On May 14, however, the DEA announced that “a number of manufacturers’ applications to cultivate marijuana for research needs in the United States appears to be consistent with applicable legal standards and relevant laws.”

As a result, and pending final approval, the agency has given preliminary approval to several organizations to grow cannabis for research. At the moment only three organizations have been publicly named as approved new growers for research: Pennsylvania-based Groff North America, the Scottsdale Research Institute (SRI) in Arizona, and Biopharmaceutical Research Company (BRC) in California.

For George Hodgin, a former Navy SEAL who is the founder and CEO of BRC, the DEA’s announcement is nothing but good news. “Up until now, research institutions, biotech firms and other private companies had few, if any, options for federally legal cannabis R&D,” he said in an email to Leafly. “This monumental step from the DEA means that BRC can now position itself as that all-in-one source for reliable and safe research and cultivation.”

Hodgin noted that companies like his also want research organizations to have more choices in the marketplace; ensuring that “the quality of the product is comparable to the supply used by cannabis patients as well as recreational users.”

The DEA announcement, he added, will “unleash a new wave of job creation in the cannabis sector and at the same time begin to develop valuable American IP [intellectual property]. This just wasn’t really possible before this decision.”

For his part BRC’s George Hodgin sees the start of a new era of cannabis research and development, fueled in part by new players in the marketplace.

“Now there’s competition, which this space has needed so badly for such a long time,” he said. “We’re ready to compete, that’s what we’ve been waiting for years to do. The decision to issue these licenses, in my view, will lead to an incredible rush of innovation in the healthcare space.”

But according to Hodgin, these developments will depend on more than rapid change. “Quality is just as important,” he said. “You can have the best research institutions in the world researching cannabis, but if the quality of the samples does not match what is actually in use, the research isn’t all that helpful. So, I think the competition will increase the speed, there’s not a doubt about that, but I also think the quality is going to be a crucial part of driving the innovation as well.”

Source: Leafly & DEA


  1. About fucking time. The DEA and the bureaucracy behind it is a big problem in this war on drugs. If only they were more progressive and less focused on increasing their federal funds, we’d have different outcomes. So far they have FAILED in stopping drug trafficking since their conception. Imagine creating a company that has never solved the underlying problem. That’s the DEA.

    1. Better medical grifa is Ok, but for "recreational purposes" with the idea of making coin will require recruitment of perfectly healthy 'endeviduals', same as it is now, but they will get addicted sooner, faster and worse, after they spend their whole paycheck dampling the very best grifa available, due to their addiction to terrible low quality shit, imagine they will be killing their grannies for the gold in their dentures to buy more recreational shit.
      Just day no to the "War For Your Centavos", fack grifa.

  2. Yes, about of the main things that is a clear error is marijuana being on Schedule I having no medicinal benefits which we all know is false. If the testing to determine that is low grade, poor quality schwag of course it wont work. Its like testing an extremely diluted soap to see if helps clean.

  3. they study with low grade.. thats ok.

    they study high grade.. "wow this stuff is way too strong" "let's never de-classify/or legalize on a federal level".

  4. if only they had a branch that focused on doing research on drugs and how to solve addiction or deal with it. but they just smell the money from seizures...

    1. 4:39 approval is of the essence, narcopoliticians have already spent the prognosticated taxes they dream of collecting from more and more grifa sales.
      That is how the chinese got swindled by the british in the 1700s and submitted at gun point
      and port closings later when the chinese tried to correct course,
      Drug yrafficking uses too much low grade Bullshit and they keep trying to enhance it...

  5. schwag im guessing someone familiar with canabis wrote this jaja

  6. Those sticks and stems remind me of the mid-summer bags we’d score growing up in Texas b/f the September harvests started in Chihuahua and Sinaloa!
    Comandante Nostalgica

    1. Excuse me mi Comandante do you work with the baddest keyboard gangster Sicario 006? Yeah, I heard u vatos were getting stuffed all over the sierra.

    2. I knew Panama Red, all other low grade mophakas are no Pamaná Reds, and never will.

  7. Entonces que mis Tres Letras si era de la buena bola de gueyes!

    1. 5:51 usté callese losico,
      Pinche Comandante Harinas!
      O le caigo a macanazos.

  8. If you don’t know “2 finger dimes” then you probably aren’t an old school stoner...

    -Holden D. Cash

    1. Burnt nails from smoking roaches is all most old timers remember.

    2. I remember some Zacatecas purple . Shit was alll over high times mag

  9. Medical marijuana is a joke. You go into these stores and hear them talking about this strain for pain and this one for I've smoked a lot of weed in my days and never has it helped with pain. It will help to relax that's about it.


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