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Walmart to sell cannabis products by this Toronto company 

Jan 7, 2022 | Media Partners, The GrowthOp

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Week in Weed: List of most trusted brands, MJBiz’s million-dollar acquisition, and stories that went viral

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The GrowthOp team would like to wish its readers a Happy New Year. Thank you for following along as we navigate the ups and downs of cannabis legalization. Hope you enjoy this week’s list of stories that made us sit up. 

2021 lookback: Cannabis stories that went viral

Weekend Dispensary  by  TGO’s Sam Riche s  was launched on January 16 last year. A weekly newsletter,  WD is dedicated to newsmakers and trendsetters in the recreational cannabis and psychedelics space — like this cannabis advocacy group partnering with  one of Canada’s leading HIV/AIDS centers ; and this  former NFL linebacker  who became a leading cannabis physician for athletes.

As of Dec. 29, 41 editions of the newsletter have been sent out. Riches rounds up the  top five stories of 2021.  

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  1. Anna-Sophia Kouparanis, 28, wears many hats; being on the Forbes 30 under 30 list this year is one of them. PHOTO PROVIDED

    She’s 28, a serial cannabis entrepreneur, and on Forbes 30 under 30 list


  2. He lost his company, filed for bankruptcy and now this famous Canadian chocolatier is making a comeback with cannabis

  3. The data also indicated the link between cannabis use and heart attack “was stronger in frequent users.” / PHOTO BY VICHIE81 / ISTOCK / GETTY IMAGES PLUS

    Canadian study: Recent cannabis use linked to doubling of heart attack risk in those under 45

Buy weed at Walmart, at least in Mexico

Flora Growth Corp. will launch 12 cannabis skincare products on  Walmart.com and Coppel  “initially on e-commerce with plans to sell in brick-and-mortar retail locations,” the Toronto-based company announced earlier this week.

While Walmart is one of the leading retail chains in Central America, Coppel, a nationwide department chain, has 1,253 stores in Mexico.

The launch takes place through the company’s  Mind Naturals portfolio . “We are excited to begin bringing high-quality, sustainable CBD skincare products to Mexico,” Luis Merchan, CEO of Flora Growth Corp, was quoted saying.

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Founded in 2019, this is the company’s first entry into the Mexican market.

Brands that topped budtenders’ most trusted list

Recent results show a majority of the consumers buy products recommended by a budtender. And what a budtender recommends is based on what they trust, use, and have had a good experience with.

The findings are part of an online survey conducted by Brightfield Group, in collaboration with Spiffy network, where 406 Canadian budtenders were interviewed from October 25 to November 16 last year. Participants were mostly from Ontario, with representation also from Alberta, New Brunswick, British Columbia, and Saskatchewan.

Canadian budtenders on brands they use the most

From the copy of the report obtained by TGO, here are some key takeaways:

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  • Budtenders gravitate towards smaller or craft brands
  • Budtenders recommend brands for their quality, consistency, and value
  • Instagram and Reddit are the most used social sources for learning about new products

“Budtenders are the missing piece of the puzzle, and they have considerable power over shopper decisions,” reads the report. “And they are more likely to recommend if they had access to samples/free products, training on the brand, or swag.”

DEA’s cheatsheet to decode drug-related emojis

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has a  guide for parents to help them figure out if their kids are buying weed . And the cheatsheet features a Canadian symbol.

Titled  Emoji Drug Code: Decoded , the reference guide is part of the DEA’s One Pill Can Kill campaign. Read TGO’s Angela Stelmakovich on how the guide aims to help parents and caregivers understand emojis when used in connection with illegal drugs.

$152 million-plus

That’s the price tag on the acquisition of MJBiz, a Colorado-based cannabis news and event company by Emerald Holding, Inc.

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Historic marijuana shipments

New Year kickstarted with a bang for Edmonton-based Aurora Cannabis. The company, which was founded in 2013, announced its largest-ever delivery of medical cannabis worth $10 million to Israel.

“It’s an exciting time for the global cannabis industry, as we’re seeing growing acceptance and thoughtful regulation of both medical and adult-use cannabis across Europe and in key markets like Israel,” says Miguel Martin, Chief Executive Officer of Aurora.

Another delivery, believed to be the largest ever  internationally , was undertaken by Virginia-based Instadose Pharma Corp. At 2,125 kilograms, the shipment made its way from South Africa to North Macedonia.

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