With Memorial Day one week away in the United States, long term effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on global industries remain uncertain, though some businesses—like restaurants and live entertainment—are likely to sustain sea changes in their business models.
Restaurant industry analysts predict a $240 billion loss overall to restaurants in the U.S. for the year 2020, due to the pandemic. Media megalith Disney reports that it expects losses of $1.4 billion in the second quarter of 2020, caused by coronavirus closures.
In Canada, a non peer-reviewed, preclinical study conducted by the University of Lethbridge and published in peer journal Preprints found that high-CBD cannabis extract medical formulations might benefit patients suffering from COVID-19.
The study was conducted in partnership with Canadian medical cannabis research and development company Pathway Rx, and cannabinoid-based oral health company Swysh, Inc. Dr. Igor Kovalchuk is a study author, chief executive officer at Pathway Rx, and holder of a Health Canada License for cannabis research
“While our most successful extracts require further validation in a large-scale analysis and an animal model, our study is crucial for the future analysis of the effects of medical cannabis on COVID-19,” Dr. Kovalchuk told the ULeth News website.
Researchers speculated effects observed in the study might be related to reputed anti-inflammatory properties of high CBD extract. Tests were conducted on “artificial human 3D models of oral, airway, and intestinal tissues.”
“Given the current dire and rapidly developing epidemiological situation, every possible therapeutic opportunity and avenue needs to be considered,” Dr. Kovalchuk continued. “Our research team is actively pursuing partnerships to conduct clinical trials.”
Cultivator High Park Gardens, a subsidiary of Canadian medical cannabis producer Tilray, Inc. temporarily closed its facility last week in Leamington, Ontario, when a worker tested positive for the coronavirus. The facility was closed overnight while local public health response performed contact tracing, and cleaning and sanitation protocols were implemented. Production has since been resumed.
On May 11, Tilray also released results from its first quarter financial report for 2020, and noted that international sales of medicinal cannabis products exceeded the company’s domestic sales by 43 percent. The report indicated also that sales have experienced a rise overall, since pandemic protocols were implemented by many countries starting in mid-March.
Cannabis tech platform developer Akerna released an e-book, titled COVID-19 & Cannabis: Look to Data-Driven Intelligence to Sustain a Recession Resilient Business.
“During these uncertain times, business leaders have an opportunity to access a unique resource that shares how business intelligence and technology can help the cannabis industry thrive using a data-driven approach,” the company said in an announcement. The e-book “presents business intelligence and insights from Platform Insights, the industry’s largest, and most statistically-relevant business intelligence solution.”
Data analyzed for the report was compiled with point-of-sales, compliance, seed-to-sale tracking, and inventory control technologies including MJ Platform, Leaf Data Systems, solo sciences, and Trellis. The e-book is available at MJ Platform.
In separate Akerna news, the company disclosed to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in its 10-Q quarterly report ending March 31, 2020, that it received a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan in the amount of $2,204,600 under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
Despite Small Business Administration (SBA) rules excluding federally-illegal businesses from financial aid, Akerna is not the first publicly traded cannabis company to receive PPP funds. Denver-based MassRoots recently reported it had received a $50,000 loan under the program.
Chicago-based brand Starz and Stripes CBD is offering all military veterans, first responders, and active duty personnel its THC-free AmourCBD Pain Relief Cream formula free of charge, when code VETERANS2020 is used.