Is a thaw in the federal medical cannabis research freeze on the horizon…??

Since becoming US Attorney General earlier this year Jeff Sessions has established a reputation as a leading foe of cannabis in all forms – including medical – and the tone of his remarks has led many to believe he wants to deprive states with legal medical programs of the limited protection they have from federal interference and prosecution under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 and its follow-ons….

But in this story, apparently showing some flexibility on the matter, “…Sessions said he wants to see “more competition” among medical marijuana growers who supply the plant to researchers, in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch, [who has introduced another cannabis research bill known as ‘MEDS’], asked Sessions to ‘clarify’ the Justice Department’s position on applications from private companies and research institutions to supply researchers with medical-grade marijuana.

‘I think it would be healthy to have some more competition in the supply but I’m sure we don’t need 26 new suppliers,’ Sessions said.

Hatch, while maintaining that he is opposed to the ‘broad legalization,” of marijuana, said he believes “scientists need to study the potential benefits and risks of marijuana.’

The DEA — which dictates the legal status of controlled substances — announced last year that it planned to increase the supply of medical marijuana available to researchers, potentially paving the way for the FDA to approve a non-synthetic marijuana-based drug. [However, no official action has yet been taken on the 26 subsequent applications to become suppliers.]

Prior to the DEA’s ruling, the only supply of marijuana available to researchers was grown at a facility at the University of Mississippi, and many complained that the marijuana was low-quality.”

We’re not quite sure of all the motivations and dynamics involved in this apparent change of attitude, but within the purview of TRUCE’s organizational mission to provide education about medical cannabis, we’re in favor of any moves to “let more sunshine (i.e., proof) into the discussion of the topic.

#MMJ #USpol #Research #FDA #DEA #CSA #NIDA #UtahNext #TRUCE    

See full article – Jeff Sessions says it would be ‘healthy’ to have ‘more competition’ among medical marijuana growers for research