Business News

Cannabis stocks look set to flourish thanks to Trump's 2018 Farm Bill

Key Points
  • The 2018 Farm Bill separated hemp from the legal definition of marijuana.
  • Non-psychoactive cannabidiol ("CBD") can be derived from hemp.
  • CBD is seen as a highly marketable product with possible medical benefits.
US President Donald Trump participates in a signing ceremony for the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 at the White House on December 20, 2019 in Washington, DC.
Brendan Smialowski | AFP | Getty Images

A non-psychoactive cannabis compound more commonly known as CBD is "poised to flourish" thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, signed into law by President Donald Trump.

That's according to analysts at Canaccord Genuity who have published a list of their favorite stocks as the cannabis industry takes off.

The 2018 Farm Bill has removed all cannabis fibre products with less than a 0.3 percent concentration of the psychoactive element tetrahydrocannabinol ("THC") from the Controlled Substances Act.

That means it is now legal to manufacture, distribute and sell hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) anywhere in the United States. CBD is viewed by many to have medical benefits, providing relief from everything from pain to depression and anxiety.

In a note Wednesday, Canaccord Genuity identified these stocks as plays for investors looking to take advantage of firms that market hemp-derived CBD products.

• Charlotte's Web Holdings, Inc. (CWEB-CSE | BUY; C$21.00 PT)

• Canopy Growth Corporation (WEED-TSE | SPECULATIVE BUY; C$50.00 PT)

• Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. (CURA-CSE | SPECULATIVE BUY; C$13.00 PT)

• Liberty Health Sciences Inc. (LHS-CSE | SPECULATIVE BUY, C$2.00 PT)

• 1933 Industries, Inc. (TGIF-CSE | SPECULATIVE BUY, C$0.70 PT)

• DionyMed Brands, Inc. (DYME-CSE | SPECULATIVE BUY, C$5.50 PT)

• KushCo. Holdings, Inc. (KSHB-OTC | SPECULATIVE BUY, US$7.50 PT)

• MJardin Group, Inc. (MJAR-CSE | SPECULATIVE BUY, C$9.00 PT)

Despite the passing of the Farm Bill, legal ambiguities have remained as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has maintained its stance that it is unlawful to sell CBD as a dietary supplement.

Canaccord's North American equity research team said despite this confusion it had noted products already being sold through Safeway in some U.S. states and that other retailers would likely follow this year.

"While the FDA's stance has added some initial caution by retailers looking to enter the CBD space, we believe this to be transient, and expect many mass market retailers to begin distributing CBD products over the course of 2019," the note read.

History of Hemp

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Why Amsterdam's jealous of America's weed industry

Hemp comes from the same cannabis plant that produces marijuana. But while marijuana has both cannabidiol (CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)), hemp, is produced with nearly 100 percent non-psychoactive CBD.

Canaccord say cultivation of hemp in the United States began in the early 1600s when English settlers grew the plant to produce rope, sails and clothes.

By the 1700s many American colonies legally required settlers to produce hemp as a raw material to build warships and trading vessels.

A number of restrictions were placed on Marijuana products throughout the first half of the twentieth century and in 1970, hemp became illegal as President Richard Nixon labelled it a Schedule 1 drug on the Controlled Substances Act.

CNBC 's Jim Cramer also expects to see cannabidiol related stocks grow in 2019, describing it as a "massive opportunity."

"That's going to give the CBD market a major boost," Cramer said noting that after the farm bill passed Canadian firm, Canopy Growth, announced it would be entering the United States market.

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