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From qz.com 1/14/16:  The US may be on the cusp of creating a home-grown industry from a long-demonized plant. The US hemp industry is pushing hard for a measure that would make it legal for US businesses to produce the substance, and if lawmakers approve it, consumers could soon find US-grown hemp in their food, baby products, fabric, fuel, paint, body-care products, paper, carpet, and even auto parts.  The National Hemp Association (NHA) on Wednesday (Jan.

From Marijuana Business Daily, 1/14/16:  Following an anti-climactic launch to New York’s medical marijuana program last week in which some dispensaries did not see a single patient, the state’s marijuana business license holders say they expected a slow start and will be able to survive until patient numbers pick-up.

From Marijuana Business Daily, 12/29/15:  If R. Brooke Jackson was a congressman, he would rule in favor of banks that want to open accounts for marijuana businesses.  But at a hearing on Monday, Jackson told lawyers for the Fourth Corner Credit Union that he is a U.S. district court judge who must uphold existing federal laws that make it illegal for banks to serve cannabis-related clients.  Read entire article here.

From Marijuana Business Daily 12/17/15:  A single company is about to dominate Canada’s thriving hemp-based foods industry.  Manitoba Harvest this week acquired Hemp Oil Canada for $42 million, which will give the combined company an edge in two industries: hemp foods and hemp ingredients, according to the Winnipeg Free Press.  Read entire Marijuana Business Daily article here.

From City Pages, 12/15/15:  Everyone loved longtime Menards pitchman Ray Szmanda, the grandfatherly face of the home improvement store until the late '90s. But not everyone is a fan of the kitchen sink emporium’s labor practices.  Last week a New York labor group filed charges with the National Labor Relations Board against the Eau Claire, Wisconsin, company. The Office and Professional Employees International Union Local 153 is accusing the company of trying to keep any prospects of employees organizing under its work boot.

From ufcw.org 12/4/15:  Several major deficiencies in the Trans-Pacific Partnership pact (TPP) – including failure to address currency manipulation or set in place adequate labor and environmental standards – are clear evidence that passage of this pact would hurt American food processors, family farmers and ranchers, while also posing serious threats to U.S. domestic beef production and prices, according to two advisory reports submitted today to the USTR.

Making Change at Walmart’s national “Are You With Us?” tour will include rallies at Walmart stores and other retail locations in cities in all 50 states across the country in the coming weeks. The kick-off is in Quincy, Mass., on Wednesday, Dec. 2. The tour and campaign are meant to showcase and highlight the negative impact that the country’s largest employer has on all American retail workers, which includes paying employees poverty-level wages, cutting hours and schedules to force workers into part-time jobs and salaries, and insufficient benefit offers.

From Marijuana Business Daily 12/3/15:  A new day has dawned for Minnesota’s medical marijuana industry.  The two companies licensed to cultivate and sell marijuana in the state – LeafLine Labs and Minnesota Medical Solutions (MinnMed) – will benefit immensely from Wednesday’s decision to add intractable pain to the program’s list of qualifying medical conditions.