the lobsterpot< newswrap roundup 23'​

Welcome one and all to the lobsterpot< newswrap of 2023!

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Jamie Bonthron
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Welcome one and all to the lobsterpot< newswrap of 2023!

Welcome one and all to the lobsterpot< newswrap of 2023!

In lieu of there being flying cars, robot slaves, and global cannabis legalisation at the frighteningly futuristic-sounding juncture in time, we thought we get things moving with a look back at the last 12 months in cannabis – the highs, lows, and downright sideways stories that tickled the trade news headlines across 2023.

But before we do that – don’t forget you can SPONSOR THIS HERE NEWSLETTER – as well as our podcast-of-the-same-name

Want deets? Email dave.barton@thermidor.wtf  

Or DOWNLOAD OUR SPONSORSHIP PRICE LIST.

Janu-meh-ary

Ah yes, January. The most underwhelming month of the year – pretty much every year.  And in terms of news, yeah, that was very much the case in 2023. That said, the US Virgin Islands passed a cannabis legalisation bill, Afroman (remember him?) announced a bid for the US Presidential Race, and The Independent published a tell-all piece about the UK’s hiding-in-plain sight illicit dispensary.


Deez Nutz

February

Feb 23 was a mixed bag of nutty news. The month saw Hong Kong align with the rest of China and take a much tougher stance on cannabinoids by banning CBD (despite a flourishing industry), while the social media platform-formerly-known-as-Twitter loosened its laws around cannabis advertising.

But our fave piece to come out of month no. 2 of 2023 was Leafie’s guide to accessing medical cannabis in the UK.


March-ing forward

As spring stepped up, we learned the sad news that Dr Raphael Mechoulam, the ‘Godfather of THC’ died at age 92. But on a more positive note, the city of Barcelona once again revved into its greenest gear for Spannabis 2023.

Us thermidorks< weren’t just in attendance, we went to town quite literally – interviewing show attendees, stall holders, and the general public about their take on Catalan cannabis.

We also held a small select gathering at Barca’s swankiest social club – The Green Boutique – got high, and chewed the canna fat with the wicked and wise.

(Of course, we filmed the whole experience. Check out Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of our Green Boutique sessions.)


Germany's legalisation plans.

April

Shit got real in April, as Germany announced formal plans to actually-really-and-truly legalise cannabis. And then neighbouring Czechia did the same.

Further north up in Scandinavia however, Finland and Sweden decided to ban HHC (a hemp-derived compound) products. But much further south – down in Cape Town – it was announced that the World’s first hemp skyscraper was nearing completion.

Talk about getting ‘sky high’.


May Time: Play Time.

Switzerland – home to Toblerone, banking secrecy, and fondue – hit the headlines with a proposal to expand its rec use trial back in May ‘23. While closer to home thermidor< hit up London Town for Cannabis Europa 2023, in which we took it upon ourselves to truly question the idea of representation and inclusion in the cannabis industry – which makes all the right noises about embracing diversity.

Plus we got a nice two-part article placed in Fat Nugs magazine: check out 'Cannarchy In The UK'.

June

In the US, the state of Minnesota went rec, which was nice, while down in Latin America, Colombia narrowly missed the boat on legalisation owing to a final senate vote that went against.

Oh and us thermidorks< repped at Lift Toronto in Canada – speaking on panels, checking out the local cannabis scene, and generally loving the state of cannabis in Canada. We even visited and filmed a grow facility; seeing the magique up close and personal.


There were a coupla small canna wins in summer '23

Why July? (We didn’t)

Come summer last year, it began to feel like a lot of the big developments were coming out of the woodwork.

Exhibit A: Luxembourg legalised cannabis for personal use (yay for all 10 people living there!).

Exhibit B: Albania legalised medical cannabis

Exhibit C: Ghana went some way to legalise low-THC medical cannabis.

Exhibit D: Over in the US, Maryland went rec/adult use (which felt oddly significant)

And Germany laid bare its recreational roadmap (kinda).


Gummy glory

August

The world’s biggest THC gummy got some traction as high summer took hold. The 20000 mg edible, dubbed ‘The BFG’ maintains the legal limit of delta 9 THC by dry weight (0.3%) and can therefore be shipped to any state in the USA (apparently).

In other news, Thailand took the spotlight in this New York Times piece on the Asian nation’s anomalous stance on cannabis. And the great US state of Ohio made noises about upping the need for more workers in the cannabis sector (skip ahead to November for gasp more on that).

Septem-bruh

As Autumn arrived, there was speculation that Belgium could in fact be the next nation to legalise adult-use cannabis. While here in the UK, a BBC documentary highlighting the need for greater access to medical cannabis via the NHS debuted.

In another unanticipated move, Spotify made noises about permitting cannabis ads on the streaming service. And us thermidorks< hit the road again – this time to Dortmund (or 'Dorty') in Germany for CB Expo. And it was freaking awesome.


Oh Canna-da!

October

October marked the five year anniversary of legal weed in Canada as this article from The Peak explores. But as the UK geared up to do the same where medical weed was concerned, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) got all sheepish about CBD dosages.

And then… as if by magic (!) Dave penned a piece on marketing medical marijuana for Cannabis Health News. Which was nice.


Talking Gangsta (Bull)shit?

November (Remembered)

The least plausible news story to come out of November (or all of 2023, in fact) was that ganja icon, Snoop Dogg, was giving up ‘smoke’ (later revealed to be a PR stunt to promote a fire pit brand).

The best story, however, was that Ohio became the 24th US state to go rec. Why so significant? Because, with nearly half of all US states now adult-use markets, federal forces can’t deny a tipping point has been reached.


Good news from Ukraine.

December

With 2023 drawing to a close, it certainly did not go gently into the good night. The biggest news of the last month was that Ukraine voted to legalise medical cannabis – in what was lauded as a ‘historic decision’.

Similarly significant was news that the Netherlands' legal coffee shop trial finally went live, and that Britain’s medical cannabis clinical trials were now underway.

And then we all got drunk/stoned, over-ate, and wore shit jumpers for the last week of the year (aka celebrated the Holidays).


So that was the year that was, thermidorks<! What does 2024 hold? Who can say?

But we will say this: if the US hasn’t nixed 280E by the end of the year (or ahead of the next election) and if Germany still hasn’t gone full titty on decriminalisation (at the very least), one of us (probs Dave) will shave his head whilst singing ‘Tomorrow’ from the musical ‘Annie’ on a LinkedIn Live.

It’s all to play for…

Are you still drunk, stoned, and wearing a shit jumper? Then you should definitely DOWNLOAD OUR SPONSORSHIP PRICE LIST. Heck – inebriation and shit jumper not required!

thermidor< is a content-led, cannabis-focused, creative agency. We work with B2B, B2C, and D2C brands to develop messaging, brand, and tone of voice, as well as create written, audio, and visual content such as blogs, whitepapers, podcasts, and event films.

Blog Author
Jamie Bonthron
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