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Connecticut Launches Loan Program for Cannabis Social Equity Businesses, Approximately Ten Fake Labor Organizations Found in California’s Marijuana Industry, and Fewer Kansas Farmers Are Growing Hemp Because of Decreased Demand for CBD

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Connecticut Launches Loan Program for Cannabis Social Equity Businesses

This week, Connecticut’s Social Equity Council (SEC) announced a new loan program to assist qualifying cannabis social equity applicants, local municipalities, and non-profit organizations in utilizing underdeveloped or unused properties to turn them into marijuana establishments. The program, known as the Canna-Business Revolving Loan Fund, offers fixed-rate loans at prime plus 3%. An interest rate discount of 1.5% will be available for applicants who complete the SEC accelerator program. The loans will require a minimum equity investment of 20%. There are specifications for what the loans can be used for. For instance, loans cannot be used for tax payments or licensing fees. Even if they hold multiple licenses, business owners will only be permitted to submit one application.  

Approximately Ten Fake Labor Organizations Found in California’s Marijuana Industry

The legal cannabis industry in California is seeing a growing issue with fake labor unions. In recent weeks, observers have flagged at least 10 labor organizations that appear suspicious and share many of the same features as a “union” that state cannabis regulators officially declared was a fake in July. The suspicious labor unions are entering into signed agreements with numerous cannabis businesses in California. State law mandates that cannabis businesses sign labor peace agreements with legitimate labor unions before they can be licensed. Many of the most notable cannabis brands in the state have signed these required agreements with “fake” labor organizations that appear to be business-friendly, but in reality, are cookie-cutter organizations that do not have any history with labor contracts or organizing workers in any industry. In total, 83 licenses for retail, manufacturing, and distribution are tied to suspicious labor unions. 

Fewer Kansas Farmers Are Growing Hemp Because of Decreased Demand for CBD

As the demand for CBD oil has decreased, fewer farmers in Kansas are growing hemp. But, according to a local news outlet, hemp advocates say that the demand for other types of hemp has increased. Other forms of industrial hemp are used for things like clothing and animal feed. While the exact cause is unknown, industry insiders speculate that the decreased demand for CBD oil may be due to cannabis reform in nearby states, such as Missouri. Data from the Kansas Department of Agriculture shows that 90% of the hemp grown in the state between 2019 and 2020 was used for CBD oil. However, thus far in 2023, less than 5% of hemp grown in Kansas has been used for CBD oil.