The federal government is looking to contract a small business to grow, test, store and ship thousands of kilograms of marijuana of varying potencies and concentrations.
No, really. The contract notice was published on the site Federal Business Opportunities last week—not long after a similar listing called for applications from prospective federal joint rollers. The new posting seems quite a bit more comprehensive, though.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is soliciting “capability statements” from businesses with the space and technology to produce, analyze and distribute cannabis and cannabis products “for research purposes.”
That’s probably in the agency’s best interest. After all, the government has been roundly criticized for failing to expand its marijuana production to meet demand. Since 1968, just one farm at the University of Mississippi has been federally authorized to cultivate cannabis for research purposes—a monopoly the government has taken some steps toward breaking, although it has faced resistance from now-former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
Experts have also raised questions about the quality of the “research-grade” cannabisproduced for federal research, as it seems to be significantly less potent and chemically diverse than the flower consumers are getting in legal states.
The listing makes clear that NIDA wants a decently large cultivation operation, including both indoor and outdoor grows. It also emphasized the need to develop marijuana with varying concentrations of THC, CBD and other cannabinoids. Whatever business receives the contract will also be tasked with developing cannabis extracts like oils, capsules and “vaping fluids.”
Here are the full job responsibilities listed on the notice:
-Grow, harvest, process, analyze, and store marijuana for research purposes or procure marijuana and marijuana products from existing commercial enterprises, including from qualified foreign sources, as required by the Contracting Officer’s Representative (COR) to meet program needs.
-Process marijuana to produce a range of standardized and pure extracts containing varying ratios (high, low and equal ratios) of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) including pure (>99%) delta-9-THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids.
-Store and maintain quality of products, including periodic analyses required to obtain and maintain Food and Drug Administration (FDA) quality requirements for Investigational New Drug (IND) research.
-Develop new methods for growing marijuana plants containing high THC and low CBD; high CBD and low THC; equal ratios of CBD and THC; and placebos as directed by the COR.
-Manufacture standardized marijuana cigarettes.
-Manufacture Current Good Manufacturing Practice (CGMP) human-use marijuana extracts and dosage forms of marijuana extracts (including but not limited to oral solutions, oils, vaping fluids, capsules/tablets) within a range of varying concentrations of delta-9-THC and CBD, and analyze their strength and stability at various intervals.
-Maintain a secure shipping facility, ship marijuana and marijuana products, and establish billing and accounting procedures to allow the collection of fees from product recipients as authorized by NIDA.
There are some basic requirements that applicants have to meet in order to be selected for the job, though. For example, they must prove that they can obtain the necessary licenses to work with controlled substances and also be able to maintain a facility capable of supporting “production of up to 2000 kg of marijuana” and storing “approximately 5000 kg of marijuana stock.”
That’s a lot of federal ganja…
If this sounds like the kind of project your business is willing and able to handle, the deadline to respond to the notice is December 10.
See the original article published on Marijuana Moment below:
Feds Seek New Growers To Produce Thousands Of Kilograms Of Marijuana
The federal government is hiring professional joint rollers, according to a recent notice published by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).
OK, that’s oversimplifying the job quite a bit. But twisting up “standardized marijuana cigarettes” with strains of various potencies will be one of the responsibilities of whatever small business lands a contract with NIDA to prepare and distribute research drug products.
If your business is capable of analyzing cannabinoids and research chemicals, creating “drug dosage forms” for compounds like THC and producing marijuana and nicotine research cigarettes “of varying strengths and specifications,” this could be the gig for you. Applicants must also obtain licenses to manufacture, research, distribute and export and import Schedule I and II drugs before the time of the contract award, which is estimated to be July 2019.
Here’s the full description of the job responsibilities:
-Acquire hard-to-find controlled and uncontrolled drug compounds and/or drug dosage forms and analyze purity, authenticity, and stability of these compounds while storing them in a secure and DEA-approved facility and having the capability to ship these compounds to research investigators.
-Manufacture standardized marijuana cigarettes within a range of varying concentrations of delta-9-THC and analyze strength and stability of them at various intervals while having the capability to maintain a secure shipping facility and to ship marijuana cigarettes to research investigators.
-Manufacture nicotine research cigarettes and analyze them for required chemical constituents at various intervals while having the capability to store and ship securely these nicotine research cigarettes to research investigators.
The successful applicant must be able to demonstrate “extensive experience with and the ability to perform the above tasks,” NIDA’s notice says.
There’s no information available in the federal posting about how much the contract award is worth—but the pay is presumably higher than what rapper Waka Flocka Flame offered for a full-time blunt roller position in 2015.
See the original article published on Marijuana Moment below:
The Feds Are Hiring Professional Marijuana Joint Rollers…Kind Of
Mailing numerous cannabinoid samples to U.S. courts and the Department of Justice was a key part of one man’s convoluted lawsuit strategy against the federal government that relied on an obscure Confederate-era statute, court filings show.
Oh, right. This requires some explanation. So, it’s not entirely clear what the end-game in this case was meant to be, but the essential facts are as follows: a man named Jeffrey Nathan Schirripa filed suit in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, alleging that the government failed to hold up its end of a contract that, in a roundabout way, he attempted to force upon it.
Schirripa first sent cannabinoid samples to the Justice Department and a U.S. district court in 2015 to lay the groundwork for a theoretical “contract” between himself and the government, according to the filings. But the court “dismissed the complaint for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction and for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.”
Then, in an apparent effort to “prove the existence” of a contract, Schirripa attached unspecified parts of marijuana to 18 copies of a confidential petition for rehearing this year. Schirripa seemed to believe that he was creating “subject matter jurisdiction,” a necessary component of an implied unilateral contract that he said the government violated.
The court did not agree that unsolicited mailings of controlled substances constituted the relevant subject matter in an implied contract, though. On Monday, it filed this order:
“The Clerk of Court is directed to transmit these 18 documents to the U.S. Marshals Service for appropriate disposition or alternate action within the purview of the U.S. Department of Justice.”
The judges explained that the specific U.S. statute that Schirripa used as the basis of his subject matter claim was enacted in 1861, and it was exclusively designed to “weaken the Confederate States by authorizing the President to seize property aiding the Confederacy in its insurrection.” In other words, it didn’t apply here.
In his petition for rehearing, Schirripa included a flow chart visualizing of his intended logic.
It starts with the fact that he sent prototypes of “neuroprotecting antioxidants” to members of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Schirripa admits that sending the “gifted” substances directly violated the Controlled Substances Act. So far, so good.
But from there, the petitioner seems to suggest that in both possible scenarios he presents—that the law can be enforced against him for mailing a controlled substance or that it can’t and so the cannabinoids are therefore “subject to prize/capture”—he’s proven to be an “interested party,” thereby validating his claim that the government breached an implied unilateral contract.
“I don’t fully understand the Schirripa’s flow chart, but it appears to be a boot-strap version a catch-22 for the court—the type of argument that you might figure out while high,” Dennis Crouch, a law professor at the University of Missouri School of Law, wrote in a blog post about the case.
The court seemed to agree. The statutes upon which Schirripa rested his contract theory “have no relation to any contract theory or any government bid or procurement practice,” the judges ruled in their denial of his rehearing. “The Court of Federal Claims thoroughly considered Mr. Schirripa’s arguments and theories, and fully explained their inapplicability.”
The appeals process might not have worked out, but it’s hard to imagine that Schirripa will be totally deterred. This marks his third appeal on “related actions” since 2014, court documents show. The legal logic of an implied unilateral contract didn’t hold up this time, but Schirripa—who has described himself as “the world’s most qualified expert in the realm of Cannabinoid Reform”—seems to be nothing if not tenacious.
Thousands Respond To FDA’s Marijuana Rescheduling Comment Request
See the original article published on Marijuana Moment below:
Man Sends Marijuana Samples To Feds… To Make A Legal Point
The government issued a warning to federal employees that the use of legal cannabis is not sanctioned activity under any circumstance. Regardless of whether employees live in states where cannabis use has been legalized or not, in the eyes of a federal employer, marijuana is still an illegal substance.
The federal government issued a formal, written guidance to all 4.1 million federal workers all across the globe to make its warning loud and clear. The warning came straight from Katherine Archuleta, director of the United States Office of Personnel Management (OPM).
In the guidance, the fact that cannabis remains illegal under federal law was clearly communicated. The plant is still classified as a Schedule I controlled substance under the Controlled Substances Act. Any employee that knowingly or intentionally engages in the possession of cannabis, regardless of intent is breaking the law and the rules regarding their employment. Any employee caught in possession of the plant is subject to be prosecuted, even in states where it has been legalized.
All federal employees are subject to a higher standard that supersedes recent legislative changes regarding marijuana, according to the issued statement. Federal law regarding the use of marijuana or any illegal substance or drug remains in effect. Many federal workers have sensitive jobs in law enforcement, security and other areas of safety, and therefore they are prohibited from using cannabis even when off the clock.
This is an interesting development considering that several states, including Colorado, Oregon, Washington and Alaska have all recently legalized the recreational use and retail sale of cannabis. Voters in Washington D.C. also legalized possession and cultivation of cannabis, but retail sales are not permitted. Nearly half of the United States have legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes, and several others have enacted very limited and restrictive cannabinoid specific legislation.
In terms of federal employees, the message cannot be any clearer or more disheartening. Even a single use or exposure to the substance can linger in the body in traceable amounts for several weeks. This could be problematic for many federal workers who are required to undergo routine drug testing.
It has been scientifically proven that the effects of alcohol, certain prescription medications and other drugs last longer and are more harmful to the human body than the effects of cannabis. Many supporters of legal cannabis feel that this issued waring is just the beginning of a long battle that will be used to keep the marijuana industry under strict control.
As long as the federal government continues to turn a blind eye to the many benefits of cannabis, it can continue to profit off the industry by taxing and penalizing users, growers and other key players while simultaneously benefiting from partnerships with large pharmaceutical companies.
Photo credit: K. Archuleta Facebook