Flavored cannabis marketing is criticized for targeting teens

When New York State offered its first licensed recreational cannabis outlet opened last month, the chief of the New York States Office of Marijuana Management proudly hoisted a tin of cherry-flavor gummies above the crowd.

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A jar of dried cannabis strain flower called Grape Ape was displayed outside of the Manhattan shop.

Inside the store run by SoKO Cannabis, there are flavors of pineapple, grapefruit, and "cereal milk" written in a rainbow letter bubble. For 30 years, health advocates surprisingly have mentioned the tobacco industry for marketing harmful nicotine products to minors, resulting in more cities and states banning flavored tobacco-related products.

As more marijuana shops open across the United States, the same concerns are growing over the packaging and marketing of cannabis that could motivate children to partake of products labeled "Loud Orange," "loud lemon," and "peach dream."

According to a professor of epidemiology at Stanford University who has written extensively about the rise in cannabis use among young people, we should place similar concern on marijuana products in terms of their appealability to youth. She said that it's almost crazy how youth-oriented the packaging and the products are.

Keyes said that public health policymakers are trying to catch up with a cannabis industry that is rapidly evolving.

New York does not allow marketing, social media, and advertising designed to appeal to children or adolescents. New York's Office of Cannabis Management has not officially adopted cannabis rules on labeling, packaging, and marketing that could ban children's cartoons and neon colors and prohibit depictions of food, sweets, candy, Pop, drinks, and cookies or cereals on the packaging. 

OCM's deputy director of public health and campaigns said consumers need to be aware if they see products that look like other products that are advertised and marketed to children. She saw a cannabis product called "Stony Patch Kids" that looked similar to the popular candy "Sour Patch Kids." Similar effects are being sold by the dozens of illegal cannabis dispensaries operating in the open, and officials are concerned about selling unsafe products. 

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The cannabis marketplace will not comply with standards once they are established.

Until we are blue in the face, we can regulate. Hunt said it's a partnership between a compliant industry and strong regulations that are robust in their protections for youth. 

The civil penalty for a minor in possession of marijuana is not much. If a cannabis retailer sells to a minor, they will be fined and lose their licenses, but no jail time.

The addictive nature of nicotine and the health problems associated with smoking tobacco have been established by science.

Some children whose young bodies and internal organs have yet to fully develop are more at risk from the health consequences of Vaping. Smoking tobacco cigarettes have fallen among teens and young adults, but e-cigarettes have risen. California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island have all banned the sale of most flavors of tobacco products. New York City has a similar ban. Linda Richter with the Partnership to End Addiction said that the issue of marijuana needs to be addressed

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She said there is much more scrutiny on the tobacco industry and less on the cannabis industry.

She said that states hadn't changed rules on a single national standard because of the relatively young of legalized industries. Marijuana remains illegal on the state and federal levels even though many states look to the federal government to set those cannabis standards."That's a real issue where you don't have the pressure the federal government in terms of means of packaging and marketing to set parameters to best avoid appealing marketing and advertising to young people."The tobacco industry has been accused of using cartoon characters to market its products by anti-smoking groups. They've been against flavors of nicotine in the past.

The cannabis industry has not been put in its crossfire yet. 

There has been a steep rise in usage among young children, especially toddlers, who accidentally ate cannabis-laced treats.<

The number of states that allow the use of cannabis for medical marijuana or recreational purposes has increased. 

In the US, medical and recreational use of cannabis is both legal. It's challenging to argue that cookies-and-cream flavors are for older adults when you're talking about them. She said that people who consider themselves more like cannabis enthusiasts would say that smoking a flavored cannabis product is like putting sauce on your steak. There is a problem with unlicensed smoke shops. 

Keywords: Chris Alexander, Cannabis, products, marijuana outlet opened 

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A new education program at Onondaga Community College will help students find an affordable path into the cannabis industry in New York.

Cannabis cultivation, processing and sales will be offered by the CannabisHub. Students will be able to work at their own pace in the classes. This semester, registration is starting. The Cleveland School of Cannabis is located in Ohio.

A growing number of colleges and universities in New York offer programs related to cannabis. A few years ago, some of those started with programs that involved the use of a form of cannabis called hemp.

Since New York legalized recreational marijuana, the programs have expanded. New York has a marijuana program.
According to a report by economic policy and labor market researchers, the New York cannabis industry could eventually employ over 50,000 people who would make over $2 billion year by the year 2027.

New York's industry rollout began in the late 19th century with a limited number of growers and processors receiving licenses. The first dispensary opened in the past month.
Warren Hilton, who took over as OCC's president last year, said that the organization doesn't know how many students will enroll in the cannabis programs.
It's too early to make projections, but I think there will be early adopters. I think once everything is moving forward, we'll see it grow from there.
All aspects of cannabis will be covered in the curriculum of the program. There are certificate programs.

There is a science to cannabis cultivation. The science of the glandular trichome is one of the topics students learn about. A registration fee of $62.50 is included in the price.

There is cannabis dispensary training. This focuses on the history and operations of cannabis. The price is $675 and the fee is $42. 73.
The cannabis industry is growing. Students learn about various types of extractions. A registration fee of $59.46 is included in the price.
The overall mission of community colleges is to keep the program affordable. The courses cost $675 for dispensary/sales training to $950 for processing/extraction and $1,000 for cultivation.


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