"Cannabis-mania" is sweeping the United States, as all sorts of businesses smartly look for ways to profit off of the growing cannabis industry driven by increasing state legalization/decriminalization of medical and/or adult-use cannabis. Universities are no different. Many public and private institutions across the United States are, for example, introducing cannabis-related courses, programs, and certificates. They are hosting or considering holding conferences. Washington State University's recent announcement is yet another example of a university joining the "green rush" and exploring how it too can participate in this hot, growing industry. As universities move into this space, they must thoughtfully consider and weigh the legal risks associated with doing so -- including, for example, any risk of potential application of the U.S. Controlled Substances Act and/or aiding and abetting liability.
Washington State University has made a deal with a California-based company in hopes of attaining pharmacy-grade marijuana for future study. The school’s Collaborative for Cannabis Policy, Research and Outreach announced the partnership with Biopharmaceutical Research Co. in a news release last week.