Medical cannabis businesses working together to provide relief

Published 2:00 pm Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Mississippi’s first medical cannabis patient seminar was held at the Hampton Inn at the Oxford Conference center on Sept. 19.

The seminar provided educational resources and awareness from MSDH-approved practitioners. Businesses and organizations in attendance included Good Day Farms, Hilltop Brands, Hybrid Relief, Kelly’s Green, Kudzu Cannabis, Magnolia Cannabis, Magnolia Tech, Mockingbird, Pause Pain and Wellness, Southern Crop, Southern Sky, MS Sickle Cell Foundation, and Steep Hill Mississippi.

“The medical cannabis industry in Mississippi is moving quickly, as numerous cultivation, testing, and dispensary facilities are in the process of obtaining their proper licensing and certifications,” said Angie Calhoun, Founder/CEO of the Mississippi Cannabis Patients Alliance. “Once the testing facilities are ready to begin testing, we should see dispensaries begin to open their doors as they recieve MDOR approval. MCPA has a new page on our website listing approved medical cannabis practitioners and licensed dispensaries across the state.”

Kelly’s Green, a medical marijuana company dedicated to providing services to Mississippians, provided a list of debilitating medical conditions that qualify for the use of medical marijuana.

The list includes cancer, Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, muscular dystrophy, glaucoma, spastic quadriplegia, HIV, AIDS, hepatitis, ALS, Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis, sickle-cell anemia, Alzheimer’s, agitation of dementia, PTSD, autism, pain refractory to appropriate opiod management, diabetic/peripheral neuropathy, spinal cord injuries, cachexia, chronic pain, severe or intractable nausea, seizures, and severe muscle spasms.

Microdosing is recommended until finding the lowest dosage that treats the condition. It is against the law to consume medical marijuana in public. Currently, testing positive for medical marijuana is a fireable offense for some places of employment.

Smoking cannabis can lead to short-term side effects and cause damage to respiratory health. Mockingbird Cannabis offered a comparison of the methods of administering medical marijuana.

Smokable products are minimally processed and offer instant relief with easily regulated doses. However, this method is harmful to the lungs, and not a good option for patients with asthma or other lung conditions. Vaping is less harsh on the lungs and delivers the same instant relief.

Edible products provide long-lasting relief as an alternative for patients adverse to inhaling. Relief takes longer to achieve than through smoking products, but doses are more precise. Topical products provide minimal to low psychoactive effects. While the doses are not strong enough for more severe conditions, pain relief is localized and can better address skin issues.

Effects of medical marijuana can vary between the different types of strains. Indica strains often provide a sedative effect, while sativa strains are associated with higher energy results.

With a lack of established infrastructure in Mississippi’s medical marijuana industry, local businesses are working together to build relationships that share the goal of providing relief to patients.

“We are all working together on this,” said Michael Watkins, COO and Co-Founder of Hilltop Brands.  “Testing, research, cultivation, processing, transportation, and dispensaries all have a common goal.”