Welcome to Artists with MCS
an international network of artists with Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS).
The network was founded by German author and painter Moon in 2001. After being diagnosed with MCS in 2000, Moon wanted to return to the artistic work she had enjoyed in former times – but she did not find any painting medium she was able to tolerate. Even scanning of internet resources did not produce any help. German MCS-networks and support groups did not know anything of value. Soon after founding the network, Moon stumbled into the homepage of the American MCS-musician who replied she would be interested to join an MCS-artists network if there was any. This was the official birth of the international network Artists with MCS, the way it is existing now.
When she planted hemp to make extra money for her family farm, Susan Corbett did not imagine thieves would find their way to her rural plot in Virginia to steal the plants.
And yet they did — one of many bends in the wild and sometimes bumpy ride hemp farmers have had since the crop was legalized in the United States in 2018.
Two security cameras now watch over a portion of Corbett’s crop, which looks and smells like marijuana but contains very little tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is what gets users high.
Also warning would-be pilferers is a sign whose bold black letters read: “This is not marijuana.”
“I don’t know what they were doing with it,” Corbett said of her looted plants. “There’s no THC in it.”
Hemp is in demand for its seeds, fiber and oil containing the relaxing cannabinoid CBD — but it’s also the same plant as marijuana, which remains illegal federally and under varying restrictions in most American states.
Besides an oversaturated market and laborious cultivation process, hemp farmers hoping to profit from the newly legitimized plant say they have had to navigate suspicious police, a legal mandate to burn crops that exceed THC limits and the problem of theft.
“Everybody plants it and goes ‘This is wonderful,'” said Corbett. “I said ‘Just wait.'”
– It’s not easy –
One of the world’s oldest cultivated plants, the US banned hemp during the 20th century before allowing its growing for research starting in 2014, then legalizing it nationwide four years later.
Forty-six states have since passed laws regulating its cultivation, with hemp licenses in 34 states growing 455 percent last year over 2018, according to Vote Hemp, an advocacy group.
CBD, whether sold as a supplement or mixed into food or drinks, has also grown popular, and financial services firm Canaccord Genuity predicts CBD sales will jump 45 percent to $18 billion by 2024.
Those who grow hemp describe a demanding crop that must be harvested by hand, maintained with a rigorous spraying schedule to keep away pests then dried out before it can be sold.
With so much of the plant hitting the market, and a shortage of processors, many farmers are seeing buyers back out of agreements.
“When we go to the CBD market, it’s ‘We’ll pay you when we get paid,’ which puts us in a problem with our creditors,” said David Turner of DC Hemp, who farms in rural Dinwiddie county, Virginia.
Another peculiarity is the presence of THC in the plant. Farmers must constantly test hemp to ensure the level doesn’t get too high, otherwise they have to burn it.
“If I get the wrong situation where I have a crop out there, I’m a drug lord,” Turner said.
Local media has reported cases of police around the United States seizing hemp shipments on suspicion of being marijuana, so growers have started carrying around a pile of documentation when transporting their harvest.
– Who steals hemp? –
And then there are the thieves.
The brigands traipsed into Turner’s fields and yanked plants out of the ground repeatedly when he was growing it last year, while at Corbett’s farm they chopped off the tops of the plants where the buds grow.
Was it to smoke the plant thinking it’s marijuana? Or sell it to unsuspecting buyers? Turner’s not sure, but said local police arrested multiple suspects for the thefts.
Farmers say their real challenge is getting their oil sold. Turner and Corbett both are sitting on gallons of CBD oil, waiting for someone to buy it.
“There definitely was a bit of an oversaturation of the market last year, and in conjunction with that market prices have dropped significantly,” said Erica Stark, executive director of the National Hemp Association.
“It’s still profitable if you can find a buyer, but it’s a big if,” she said, adding that the market situation will improve once processing capacity for hemp fiber grows, and the government passes regulations on CBD’s use as a supplement.
Turner has decided to sit out the 2020 planting season, and Vote Hemp estimates the actual harvest in 2019 was much lower than what farmers were licensed for due to crop failure and non-compliant plants.
“I haven’t gotten rich doing it,” concedes Corbett, who also rents out land to cattle ranchers and hosts guests at her riverside acreage in the town of Stanley.
“I believe in CBD and so, if I do OK this year, I’ll probably commit to five more years.”
Mine Naturals Skincare Brand
A look at Mind Naturals relax Hydrating Mask.
TORONTO, Aug. 10, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Flora Growth Corp. (“Flora”, “Flora Growth”, or the “Company”) is pleased to announce the official launch of sales of Flora Beauty products in the United States. These early sales are being generated exclusively through e-commerce channels and serve as a soft launch of Flora Beauty.
“Today marks an exciting day for Flora Growth as we generate our first revenues from the sale of CBD products,” commented Flora Growth’s CEO, Damian Lopez. “We promised investors we would generate revenue in 2020 and we have now officially delivered on our commitment.”
About Flora Beauty Launch
As of today, Flora Growth’s beauty division, Flora Beauty, has commenced sales of its skincare brand, Mind Naturals, through the e-commerce platform www.mindskincare.com.
Mind Naturals is a Colombian skincare line that uses premium CBD as the base for its inaugural collection. The brand was created to celebrate nature and mindfulness and reinforces the importance of celebrating small moments in our daily routine.
The first collection of the brand launches with four products:
Unwind Moisturizer – US$22 per unit
Refresh Cleanser – US$12 per unit
Decompress Eye Cream – US$18 per unit
Relax Hydrating Mask – US$14 per unit
“The skincare market in the U.S generates US$17 billion in annual revenue and is one of the best performing categories in beauty,” commented Flora Growth’s President of Consumer Goods, Luis Merchan. “Consumers today are looking for products to help them relieve burnout and manage an increasingly complex life. At Flora Beauty, we believe healthy skin is the foundation of well-being and balance. The launch of Mind Naturals is the first step to help our consumers find a healthier, well-balanced life.”
Mind Naturals inaugural line exemplifies Flora Growth’s socially conscious approach to the industry by creating products that are paraben and phthalate free, vegan, and absent any ingredients that utilize animal-testing. Further, all packaging is designed to be sustainable – for example utilizing sugar cane tubing – to help reduce the environmental impact and support our sustainability goals.
The grand launch marketing campaign for Mind Naturals is scheduled for September of 2020 and will target top-designated market areas in the U.S., including New York, Miami, and Los Angeles. The brand will continue to expand its portfolio with the launch of lip balm and rose water in time for the 2020 holiday season.
We expect that Mind Naturals will expand the distribution of its product portfolio into marketplace retail partners and through brick and mortar retail locations in 2021 in both U.S. and South American markets.
About Flora Beauty
Flora Beauty is Flora Growth’s beauty division. The division markets natural cosmetics and skincare products with CBD through two lifestyle brands focused on quality, transparency, and sustainability.
About Flora Growth Corp.
Flora Growth is a vertically integrated cannabis company striving to be a globally recognized cannabis brand by leveraging low-cost production of cannabis to supply CBD oil to its portfolio of consumer and medical brands.
This news release may contain forward-looking statements. These statements include statements regarding the Company’s operations, sales of Flora Beauty’s products in the United States, the grand launch marketing campaign for Mind Naturals, the expansion of Mind Naturals’ product portfolio into marketplace retail partners and through brick and mortar retail locations in 2021 in both U.S. and South American markets, and the Company’s future plans and objectives. These statements are based on current expectations and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially. We do not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, except as required by applicable laws.
A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/8be31c3f-e02f-41a6-9230-87f3b3ba916f
Over the last few years, hip-hop culture has actually become big in Latin America, after decades of being ignored.
Nowadays, rap artists and trappers from the area rack up actual billions of views on their YouTube videos, while freestyle rap competitors fill arenas with 40.000 people every week, all throughout the continent– prior to COVID-19, that is.
While still permeated by the American rap culture, the motion is quite autochthonous; it is primarily Spanish-speaking artists who are revered in the neighborhood.
Out of the objective to incentivize a two-way cultural crossover, DAMN! was born.
The hip hop program, developed by the people behind the very first viral freestyle battle competition of the Internet period, has numerous thousands mesmerized – their YouTube channel, boasting almost half a million customers.
Hosts Veeyam, Tata and Pluzito state they were inspired by the renowned 90 s program, “Stretch and Bobbito.” This becomes apparent when you see their show
Back for its third season, DAMN! promises to step up its game to an entire brand-new level, informing its audience on the whole hip hop culture, from graffiti to b-boying. The hosts share information on devices, tips on career structure, news and analyses, in addition to (of course) tons of music, live interviews with the biggest stars of the area, and freestyle.
Interested in learning more about what fuels this cannabis-infused phenomenon, I caught up with Veeyam, Tata and Pluzito and asked them about entrepreneurship, self-management, success, and how marijuana suits everything.
Flying High, On Air
” We’re typically ‘flying high’ when we’re on air,” jokes Pluzito, a popular rapper in the scene, displaying his expertise with words.
What does interest him is the business behind marijuana, which is still mainly foreign to the Latin American area. Whatever, from technology to packaging style, has Pluzito flipping out.
Tata is one of the OG freestyle rappers of Argentina. Nowadays, he’s a judge for the biggest competition in the Spanish-speaking world, the Freestyle Master Series. The tournament is held throughout eight Spanish-speaking countries and swaggers over 4 million customers on its YouTube channel, with some fights reaching a million views within hours.
For Tata, cannabis is a lifestyle. And he is a conscious consumer too.
” In my personal life, cannabis is necessary. Not only for all things creative, but also as a day-to-day medication,” he states. “And I feel like it makes me a better dad too. I’m a lot more patient and in touch with my kids.”
Veeyam has a different relationship with marijuana – it’s more of a social activity. Still, he is a strong advocate for safe access to medical cannabis, which is yet not easily available in Argentina, despite it having been legislated back in 2017.
The host shares a personal experience about how difficult it was to access CBD oil for a close relative with cancer. He needed to leap through limitless hoops simply to get poor quality, illegal products, which he feels should have never been prohibited in the first place.
” I attempted to get in touch with individuals who knew a lot about the topic, since I required assistance. Even connected to individuals in the U.S. and Europe. And I pertained to the realization that we’re rather behind in terms of safe access, which false information reigns in our area,” he voices.
” There are individuals who require marijuana now. Not in five years … We need immediate access to the health advantages of cannabis … These are truly serious conditions and individuals can’t get their medication in exceptionally crucial situations,” the music producer adds, requiring immediate policy of marijuana products throughout Latin America.
Living Off Your Enthusiasm
In timeless hip-hop fashion, Veeyam, Tata and Pluzito are making a living – and a killing- off their greatest enthusiasm.
” You have to take a leap, risk it,” says Tata when triggered about the practicality of developing a task out of the important things you enjoy most. “Everybody can prosper at this, however not everybody wants to take the danger and face the potential consequences.”
Of course, a great group is always basic, Tata adds, recognizing his manufacturers, Julo and Colo. Both his peers, nod in contract.
Pluzito, thoughtful and incredibly articulate, brings up a lesson he’s found out about entrepreneurship: if you put your energy into something, it grows.
” But you need energy and heart, determination.
Circling around back on love, Veeyam adds: “it’s all about individuals and union. Human capital and human quality.
” When you spend every day putting love, devotion, attention, and effort, into a project, it constantly bears fruit … That’s our secret sauce: love and commitment.
The 2 previous seasons of the program were produced by one of the biggest radio and podcast stations in Latin America. The new season is self-produced, thanks to the assistance of Move Performances, the MAD music school and the DAMN! production group.
” One frequently attempts to accomplish in life what one would have wanted to have as a kid … If in the past, we [the hosts] had actually had an area like DAMN!, we would have grown much faster. That’s what we wish to accomplish now, for up and coming artists. We want to pass the torch,” Veeyam continues.
” DAMN!, like cannabis, needs care and love. It’s our medication, and we grow it ourselves,” he concludes.
Don’t like the taste or texture? We’ve got you covered
After coming from humble hippy-dippy beginnings, CBD has quite quickly taken over the beauty and wellness industry with Forbes reporting earlier this year that 8 million people in the UK are buying CBD products, spending over £150m in the first four months of 2020 alone.
While there are now more CBD brands than you could try in a lifetime, for some, the taste and texture of the oils (or tinctures as they’re also known) are off-putting. As COVID-19 still holds the world in its grip, whatever stage of lockdown you’re in – in, out, or returning – you’re likely still feeling the impact of being cooped up.
Fear not, we’ve got a round-up of CBD oil alternatives to help ease those aches and pains and bring you some peace.
FOR BODY ACHES
Cannaray’s Skin Cream is the perfect antidote to ease any aches you’ve got from a lack of exercise, or from working hunched over your laptop cramped in the corner of your kitchen. Infused with aloe, arnica, eucalyptus, shea butter, rosemary, and menthol, the light cream works immediately, cooling the area of your woes and relieving the muscles of all tension while also moisturising. Apply some to the shoulders and neck before going to bed for a restful, undisturbed night’s sleep.
FOR A PICK ME UP
Just feeling a bit down or glum? While we can’t blame you given the current circumstances of the world, we can offer some help. Pollen’s No Pressure gummies – flavoured with grapefruit, turmeric, and cayenne (they’re delicious) – give you a dose of 10mg CBD to promote a sense of restoration and balance. The range also includes Powerbank and Soothe You gummies to help you feel your best or achieve serenity respectively. They’re vegan too!
TO COMBAT DRY SKIN
If you’ve been having increased breakouts and dryness since lockdown, you’ll be pleased to hear you’re not alone – even Rihanna gets down about it. You can combat both of these problems with Chantecaille’s CBD 300 Face and Body cream, enhanced with eggplant stem cell extract to reduce redness, aggravation, and increase moisture and hydration.
TO GET YOU IN THE MOOD
While sex might be low on people’s priority lists right now – or impossible to achieve depending on where you are in the world – for those of you lucky enough to be getting it on, why not try something new? Mello’s Bottoms CBD suppositories – yes, that means to be taken vaginally or anally – increase sensitivity and sensation as well as aiding with dryness and lubrication. Their unique administration method also means that you’ll start to feel the effects within 10 minutes. If you’re not having sex, you can still use this to ease the effects of periods, IBS, and other lower body discomfort.
CBD oil alternatives IIII
FOR GLOWING SKIN
Without being able to hit the beach or catch some rays in Mykonos, your skin is likely begging for that I’ve-been-away glow. Revolution Skincare’s affordable CBD Essence Spray hydrates with just one spritz thanks to its calendula flower extract. The refreshing mist can also be used post-workout to reduce redness and calm you down.
TO HELP YOU SLEEP
Trouble sleeping? Can’t be helped when it feels like the world is ending. OTO’s Pillow Mist includes a unique blend of botanicals – such as lavender, chamomile, and vetiver – as well as 30 per cent CBD to help you relax and achieve deep sleep. Simply spray on to your pillow before going to bed and inhale throughout the night; the CBD being released from your pillow as you move about. Promoting homeostasis, the mist is unlike sleeping pills that might make you feel sluggish and more tired. You’ll wake up feeling balanced and refreshed the next day instead.