The Wonders of Weed

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Cannabis is being tipped as the next big thing in health and wellness and America, with its new liberal drug laws, is leading the way.

Stateside, the hash brownies are flying off the shelves while cannabis extract is being added to everything from gummy bears to beauty creams and health foods to dog treats. Fortunately for Fido, not all of these products make you high, as Belinda Beckett discovers.

Remember 2016’s New Year’s Eve prankster who changed the ‘o’s on the famous Hollywood sign to ‘e’s to read Hollyweed? It wasn’t an overstatement. California gave the green light to grass last November – becoming the 29th state to legalise medical marijuana and the ninth to permit recreational use for over 21s.

And across The Pond, the commercial world and his wife have been dreaming up innovative new ways to make money from weed that go way beyond roll-up papers, pipes and bongs.

Retailers have turned into dealers with a host of cannabis-infused products promising to treat everything from haemorrhoids to hair and images of the spiky green plant are popping up on packaging for cosmetics, food supplements and health drinks as well as pharmaceuticals.

Boutique marijuana farms are growing artisan crops and gearing up for tourists; fitness centres are starting yoga classes for medical marijuana card holders; and the dingy dispensaries where patients take their prescriptions are being reinvented as chic designer apothecaries.

We could see it happen in Europe. Catalonia legalised medical marijuana this June, as did Greece in July, following in the smoke rings of the Czech Republic, Finland, the Netherlands and Portugal.

Even celebrities are going potty about cannabis. Rock singer, Melissa Etheridge, brews weed wine tonic, Whoopi Goldberg merchandises marijuana salves for menstrual cramps and Bob Marley is selling medical bud from beyond the grave under the Natural Marley label…

Words Belinda Beckett

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