420 with CNW — Cannabis Legalization Caused Significant Decline in Illegal Cannabis Seizure Samples

October 22, 2021 16:25:41

Research led by a top cannabis investigator for the federal government revealed that state-level cannabis legalization has left the DEA with few samples of seized illicit marijuana to analyse. This finding supports the claim made by legalization advocates that consumer demand for unregulated marijuana from illicit channels will decrease as more legal markets are established.

The study, which was published in the “Biological Psychiatry” journal, was authored by Mahmoud ElSohly. ElSohly is in charge of the country’s sole federally authorized marijuana growing facility at the University of Mississippi. The study states that the number of samples received over the last five or so years has declined significantly because of the legalization of cannabis for either recreational or medical purposes in various states in the United States.

The decreasing number of seizures reported in the study provides the latest indication of the shrinkage of the unregulated market while the marijuana legalization movement spreads as more states legalize the plant for medical or recreational use.

Recent data released by the FBI also shows that cannabis arrests are also declining across the country, with numbers from last year showing significant decreases. An analysis from the U.S. Sentencing Commission that was released earlier this year found that federal cannabis trafficking cases also dropped last year as more states moved to legalize. A separate report released by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts found that while cases involving cannabis declined by roughly a quarter, federal prosecutions of drug-related crimes increased overall in 2019.

Another study released in 2018 by the Cato Institute discovered that state-level cannabis legalization had considerably undercut cannabis smuggling. A recent study published in “Biological Psychiatry” also found that even as the number of DEA illicit marijuana samples gradually declines as the legalization movement spreads, the more limited supply shows that THC potency grew over time.

The study discovered that the average THC potency in seized cannabis increased from about 9.7% in 2009 to 14.8% in 2018, then it decreased slightly in 2019 to 13.8%. In addition, the average CBD concentration in seized cannabis dropped to 0.14% in 2017 from 0.4% in 2009. In 2019, CBD concentration then increased to 0.6%.

Legislators, researchers and advocates have argued that research that relies on the government’s marijuana is compromised, given that it usually contains considerably lower cannabinoid levels in comparison with the products sold in state-legal dispensaries.

Legalization has also made it possible for massive growth to be registered in different sectors of the cannabis industry, and the continuing success of companies such as Simply Sonoma Inc. provides concrete proof of that growth.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Simply Sonoma Inc. are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/Sonoma

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