NEW laws will allow New South Wales farmers to grow cannabis crops for industrial use, the state government says. But the hemp plants will not be varieties containing any significant amount of the active substance in illicit cannabis.
The Hemp Industry Bill will allow farmers to grow hemp (cannabis sativa) for use in skin care products, paint, load-bearing masonry, insulation and as an additive to wool, Primary Industries Minister Ian Macdonald said. Such production is already permitted in Victoria, Tasmania, Queensland, the ACT, Victoria and Western Australia.
Author: Patrick Barkham
Growing your own was once the preserve of hobbyists and hippies with access to a greenhouse or remote allotment - organised crime didn't bother with marijuana plants. In the past five years, however, international drug gangs have abandoned cannabis smuggling and have started growing the drug in Britain. As a result, the UK has gone from producing 15% of its own cannabis in 2002 to up to around 90% today. What was a cottage industry is now a slick and secret network of factories and farms, many based in respectable suburbs.
This year alone, police have discovered cannabis factories in Portsmouth, Lincoln, Doncaster, Yeading, Peterborough, Swansea, Norwich, Swindon, Hertford, Hetton-le-Hole near Sunderland, Littleport in Cambridgeshire, Blackpool, Stewarton in Ayrshire and dozens of other towns and cities. After busting four operations in one day in April, Cardiff police were not surprised - they were uncovering, on average, one factory every week, they said. More than 300 cannabis were discovered in the West Midlands last year, while detectives estimated that a factory found near Scunthorpe in April contained plants worth £4m.
RANDOM drug and alcohol tests for aviation workers across the country are a step closer. The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) is on the verge of signing a three-year, $9 million deal with Symbion Health to undertake the testing, which would be a first for Australia's airports.
Tens of thousands of people working on the "air side" of an airport — including pilots, engineers and baggage handlers — will be subject to testing in a bid to stamp out substance abuse in aviation. Those caught with a blood-alcohol content of .02 or more, or anyone testing positive to a range of illicit drugs, including cocaine, cannabis and opioids, would face fines of up to $5500 and could lose their jobs.
Researchers at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC), McGill University and the University of British Columbia (UBC) determined that medical use of cannabinoids do not cause an increase in serious adverse events, but are associated with an increase in some non-serious adverse events.
Several drugs containing compounds derived from the cannabis plant, or cannibinoids, are available for medical purposes in Canada. As the use of cannabinoid medications increases, so do concerns about their potential to cause "adverse events," or negative side effects. Dr. Mark Ware, Dr. Stan Shapiro and PhD candidate Tongtong Wang of the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre and McGill University, and Dr. Jean-Paul Collet of the University of British Columbia examined the nature of these potential adverse events in a study which will be published June 16 in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ).
Few natural food sources have withered as much confusion, controversy and misinformation (and lack of information) as hemp – which is unfortunate, and even ironic, given that it is one of the world’s most perfect foods.
Actually, it goes far beyond food, as this super-plant has also been used for centuries as a wonderful source of fibers for clothing and accessories, soaps and oils, and much more. It's even rumored to be the world's "oldest food" consumed by modern man.
Have you been seeing more and more health foods, snacks, nutrition bars, oils, breads and other products on the shelves with the word “hemp!” on the packaging? Protein powder that “now includes hemp greens!”, cereals with hemp seeds, hemp drink mixes, hemp bathing oils and soaps? Thanks to a recent explosion of legal hemp growing largely based in Canada (hemp has been legal to grow in Canada since 1998), a version of this plant – and more specifically, the seeds of the plant, has become what many believe to be the next revolution in health foods, based on its rather staggering nutritional profile.
Source: The Sydney Morning Herald
Author: Arjun Ramachandran
·: 7.5 tonnes of drugs seized in 2006/07
·: drugs worth about $803.8 million
·: weight of cocaine detected up 600 per cent
·: heroin seized 392 times, up from 300 in previous year
Drug traffickers are increasingly using the mail system to post illicit drugs to Australia, as the number of heroin detections at the border reached the highest on record, a national crime report shows.
Australian Crime Commission chief executive Alastair Milroy said traffickers were resorting to "scatter" importations using air cargo and postal streams, "as law enforcement bodies continue to detect large quantities of cocaine and heroin at the border".
Source: The Advertiser
Author: Doug Robertson
AN Adelaide business is rebadging outlawed cannabis bongs to beat tough new laws making the sale of drug implements illegal. Attorney-General Michael Atkinson and a reformed cannabis addict say they saw illegal bongs on sale at Off Ya Tree in Hindley St, but they were labelled water-pourers.
"I'm advised that re-naming drug-use products does not protect a retailer from being subject to the new drug paraphernalia laws," Mr Atkinson said. He said he had alerted police to Off Ya Tree's alleged sale of illegal items.
Author: Tuoi Tre
The central police have aimed to press charges against members of a ring, including five foreigners, for allegedly trafficking 8.8 tons of cannabis resin from Hai Phong to Quang Ninh Province in May.
The five alleged foreign traffickers are Ieong Chi Kai, Chak Wok Kwong, Wang Hui Lan and Ngan Chi Nen from China and Lu Minh Cheng from Indonesia.
On May 12, the police seized the drugs, with an estimated value of US$90 million, at the Mong Cai border gate in the northern province of Quang Ninh.
Source: The Herald Sun
Author: Tamara McLean
HEAVY marijuana use over many years appears to shrink parts of the brain that control emotion and memory, an Australian study shows. Brain scans on 15 men who smoked at least five joints a day for more than a decade show for the first time that they have structural brain abnormalities not seen in non-smokers.
The researchers from the University of Melbourne say their findings should settle the historic controversy over the long-term effects of cannabis use with solid proof of the damage it causes.
"These findings challenge the widespread perception of cannabis as having limited or no consequences on the brain," said study leader Dr Murat Yucel, a clinical neuropsychologist at the Melbourne Neuropsychiatry Centre.
Source: Archives of General Psychiatry
Author: Multiple Doctors
To determine whether long-term heavy cannabis use is associated with gross anatomical abnormalities in 2 cannabinoid receptor–rich regions of the brain, the hippocampus and the amygdala.