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Cannabis Research Center launches at UC Berkeley

Bethan Rose Jenkins, Cannabis News Writer/Editorial

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A freshly formed cannabis research center has officially opened at the University of California Berkeley.

According to the center’s co-director Van Butsic,  the center has the potential to become something magnanimous in regards to academia. Butsic, who holds a Ph.D. in forestry, will dedicate 2019 to studying cannabis farming and water use. He says that researchers at the university will be conducting, or at the very least, proposing, studies pertaining to the plant.

The cannabis research center plans to increase grant funding as findings emerge, of which the researchers hope to publish in leading academic journals.

This really opens things up. We really should be so much further ahead in our ability to gather data, analyze it, and get it out there,” said Ph.D Dominic Corva, founder and executive director of the Center for the Study of Cannabis and Social Policy.

Private reception for launch of cannabis research center featured all-star guests

The exclusive reception for the launch of UC Berkeley’s cannabis research center was held inside the Barrows science building. Hosted on the top floor, the event bestowed attendees with a view of the university’s iconic Campanile.

Included in the panel discussion were Richard Parrott of farming regulator CalCannabis, Joanna Cedar from bud producer CannaCraft, Kristin Nevedal of the Nevedal Group, founder of Oakland’s largest retailer Harborside Stephen DeAngelo and cannabis advisor for Alameda County Supervisor Nate Miley, Patricia Brooks.

More than 50 guests were present in the audience at UC Berkeley’s cannabis research center launch. They included Cal post-doctoral fellow Michael Polson, Dominic Corva from Washington state’s Center for the Study of Cannabis and Social Policy and a woman named Amanda Reiman, who holds a doctorate in social welfare.

During the initial year of operation, the research center will mold the industry’s entry avenues for cannabis farmers, as well as figure out farm water usage rates. Numerous grant applications are expected to ensue in the coming months.

“It’s great the UC system is coming along with this stuff,” said Corva. “This really opens things up. We really should be so much further ahead in our ability to gather data, analyze it, and get it out there. This will get us over the hump.”

Grant from UC Berkeley Social Science Matrix will fund science center in 2019

UC Berkeley’s cannabis research center was made possible thanks to a grant from the UC Berkeley Social Science Matrix. Funding from the flagship institute for social science research will ensure that the first year of Cal’s Cannabis Center is funded in its entirety.

Butsic says the funding indicates major changes in applying for cannabis research grant money within the space of a few short years. They said, ‘Don’t even bother to apply,’ and now, how things have changed,” said Butsic.

Cal’s Cannabis Research Center launched shortly after the school’s Botanical Garden produced and launched the Science of Cannabis public symposium in 2018.

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Cannabis Research Center launches at UC Berkeley