Better Business Bureau Exposing Fake Online Weed Companies

The Better Business Bureau (BBB), founded in 1912 to provide consumer protection and industry self-regulation, was a reaction to “medical quackery and the promotion of nostrums and worthless drugs,” according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI).

So here we are, 105 years later, and the BBB has gone back to its original motivating objective.

Having received a tip through its own ScamTracker, the BBB stepped up to the plate and warned it was investigating two web-based businesses—Denver Marijuana and Denver Smoke Buds.

Read more at High Times

Cannabis Investing Is a Moral Imperative

Last Thursday, a new bill was introduced that would effectively end the federal prohibition on medical cannabis.

While I was certainly happy to see this bipartisan effort created, I was also reminded of how frustrating it is that such a bill needs to be introduced in the first place.

Why do we have to ask permission to treat our own illnesses as we see fit?

Read more at High Times

Why Hemp Could Be The Future Of Plastics

This article was originally published on Benzinga, and updated for exclusive re-publication on HIGH TIMES.

Leslie Bocskor, investment banker and president of cannabis advisory firm Electrum Partners, is one of the most passionate people in the cannabis industry that Benzinga has come across. In a recent chat, the site’s Javier Hasse asked him to discuss a topic he was passionate about, an issue he found particularly interesting.

Bocskor recently became fascinated with hemp. Not cannabis, but good old-fashioned hemp, the kind that was used to make fabrics in the 19th century.

Read more at High Times

PNC Bank Starts Closing Marijuana Accounts—Advocates Blame Sessions

Fearing that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions will make good on his threat to impose a crackdown on the legal cannabis trade, PNC Bank, one of the largest financial institutions in the United States, has decided to sever all ties with any organization connected to marijuana.

According to the Washington Post, PNC recently told national marijuana advocacy group, the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), that it was permanently terminating its accounts because an internal audit showed the group distributes funds to assist in efforts to legalize marijuana.

‘‘They told me it is too risky. The bank can’t assume the risk,’’ said Nick Field, MPP’s chief operating officer.

Read more at High Times

So You Want to Be a (Legal) Cannabis Entrepreneur?

It’s an exciting time to be in the burgeoning cannabis industry, where timing and positioning are key and the establishment of a brand can be essential for long-term survival and success. Sharing some similarities with both the repeal of alcohol prohibition in 1933 and the Internet boom of two decades ago, the cannabis industry is nevertheless unique unto itself—inviting comparisons to the spirit (and risks) of the Wild, Wild West, yet also demanding an aptitude and appreciation for technical complexity. It is a place for neither fools nor the faint of heart to tread.

The fact is that, as the cannabis industry moves fully out of the shadows, it is establishing itself among the most highly regulated business environments in the world, on a par with financial services, gaming, and health care in terms of depth and complexity within the regulatory framework.

Not only are cannabis businesses subject to state licensing and regulatory requirements, but their stakeholders must adhere to city, county, and federal regulations and authorities as well. Cannabis compliance can be a highly complex endeavor, subject to many pitfalls. If a business is noncompliant from a regulatory perspective, it risks losing its hard-earned privilege to operate, while facing stiff fines, penalties and probationary actions that threaten to handicap it at the very time that it seeks to bloom in the marketplace.

Read more at High Times

Cultivating Business with Women Grow

Women Grow, a group that was started in Denver in 2014, empowers female entrepreneurship in the cannabis industry. Monthly meetings allow members an opportunity to meet each other and learn about emerging business trends. Industry experts share their knowledge during a panel discussion and attendees are encouraged to swap business cards and do some serious networking during the social time that is built into each meeting’s agenda.

I attended a recent meeting of the San Diego chapter of Women Grow, which was founded two years ago. I arrived in time for the pre-meeting mixer and quickly found members eager to share their experiences with the organization.

Best friends Katie Moodie and Brooke Brun are partners in KB Pure Essentials, a San Diego company that offers a line of CBD wellness products. Brooke suffers from a severe form of epilepsy that, untreated, subjects her to an average of three grand mal seizures daily. Traditional pharmaceutical treatments were effective, but the high doses she required left her with depression and other side effects.

Read more at High Times

Pot Industry Joins the Club and Establishes Voluntary National Standards

On Thursday, the National Association of Cannabis Businesses (NACB) announced its launch, making it the cannabis industry’s first self-regulatory organization. According to the NACB, their mission is to “support the compliance, transparency and growth of legal cannabis businesses in the U.S.” and to “establish voluntary national standards that address critical issues such as advertising and financial integrity.”

The NACB will be led by President Andrew Kline, who brings with him a long career that includes time as an Assistant United States Attorney and senior advisor to Joseph Biden. He’ll work closely with CEO Joshua Laterman, a veteran of global financial and investment institutions, who started developing the NACB three years ago.

One of the goals is that the standards, while voluntary, will do much to improve the overall business reputation of marijuana by working with members to understand laws that are always changing.

Read more at High Times

Al Sharpton Calls for More Diversity in Pot Industry

In the lead-up to the fourth annual Cannabis World Congress Business (CWCB) Exposition in New York City on Friday, Rev. Al Sharpton had strong words for the cannabis industry.

Sharpton, a famous civil rights activist and political commentator known for (and sometimes criticized for) his left-leaning views on race, said that people of color need to do more to break into the industry.

According to the Huffington Post, Sharpton said that “Just because I don’t use marijuana as a minister, does not mean I have the right to impose my moral values on others. However, I will challenge the cannabis industry and its distributors in states where it is legal to support civil rights movements and ensure that we are not disproportionately excluded from business opportunities.”

Read more at High Times


If a business is created with the honest purpose of healing others, success often follows. Those who seek wellness intuitively sense the purity and reliability of Papa & Barkley’s fine selection of medicinal products.

The company produces soothing and pain-relieving products made from pure cannabinoids and cannabis terpenes, including topicals, massage oils, balms and Releaf™ Soak bath salts. Their highly popular patches are particularly impressive, providing incremental amounts of cannabinoids to the wearer during a 12-hour period.

The meaning behind the company can be found in the name. “Papa” explains a lot. While caring for his father, who was suffering from a debilitating disease, Papa & Barkley CEO Adam Grossman created a homemade, THC-based pain balm. After witnessing its powerful healing effects, Grossman was driven to create a retail product. Then he met Guy Rocourt, Papa & Barkley’s Chief Product Officer, and the rest is history. They tirelessly worked together to create their Releaf™ line of products.

Read more at Dope Magazine

Legal Pot to Boost California Economy by $5 Billion

California is preparing to launch a fully legal cannabis trade that stands to boost the state’s economy to the tune of $5 billion, according to a report from the Los Angeles Times.

The piece, which is based on a new study from the University of California Agricultural Issues Center, says that, while the state’s newest version of a cannabis industry will undoubtedly generate impressive revenues, it will likely take some time before the entire scope of the cannabis community gets onboard with a fully legal system.

The study shows that around 30 percent of the state’s pot buyers will still frequent the black market in order to avoid paying taxes and other aspects of the legal trade.

Read more at High Times