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Research Uncovers Additional Potential Medicinal Benefits of Cannabis

NEW YORK, Aug. 22, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- In the past few years, cannabis has become a prominent talking point as more countries around the world give its citizens access to the plant. For instance, under international regulations cannabis is still considered a Schedule 1 Drug. In spite of this, however, several countries have already legalized the plant. Predominantly, most of these countries are legalizing cannabis for its medical benefits. However, several regions such as Canada and parts of the U.S. have legalized cannabis for recreational use as well. Nonetheless, the medical market currently accounts for the majority of the overall industry because of its global accessibility and availability. For instance, countries have legalized medical cannabis to treat chronic conditions such as severe pain, cancer, multiple sclerosis, and epilepsy. And while there are many other conditions that researchers believe cannabis can treat, due to the lack of large-scale clinical trials, regulators cannot approve the treatments. In response, researchers are constantly conducting innovative clinical trials to better understand the efficacy of cannabis and eventually intend to work towards implementing cannabis treatments into the medical marketplace. For example, Harvard University's Dana-Farber Cancer Institute recently released a study which suggested that cannabis can be an effective therapy for pancreatic cancer. To note, pancreatic cancer only accounts for 3% of all cancers in the U.S., but with a one-year survival rate of just 20%, it is projected to be the second leading cause of cancer deaths by 2020, according to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. The studies suggested that a chemical known as FBL-03G found within the cannabis plant can have "significant therapy potential." FBL-03G is a derivative of a cannabis flavonoid, which are also known to have anti-inflammatory benefits. The researchers concluded that by using the flavonoids as a tumor-targeted delivery therapy, it can possibly eradicate cancerous cells, increasing the rate of survivability. As more similar positive research continues to emerge, regulators could be more inclined to reevaluate the state of cannabis regulations. The global cannabis market is projected to grow from USD 10.3 Billion in 2018 to USD 39.4 Billion by 2023 at a CAGR of 30.7%, according to data compiled by MarketsandMarkets. Pasha Brands Ltd. (OTC: CRFTF) (CSE: CRFT), Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. (NYSE: IIPR), HEXO Corp. (NYSE: HEXO) (TSX: HEXO), Valens GroWorks Corp. (OTC: VGWCF) (TSX-V: VGW), Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. (OTC: HRVSF) (CSE: HARV)

Cannabis has become an increasingly popular alternative to treat patients suffering from cancer. Predominantly, cannabis is being used to suppress the pain caused by therapies such as chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Moreover, cannabis is also being used to treat nausea and stimulate appetite among patients. The versatile uses of the plant within the cancer market make it an appealing treatment option because it can eliminate the need for multiple drugs. For instance, a patient undergoing chemotherapy is likely to use opioids to alleviate his or her pain. Additionally, the patient may also use anti-nausea medications, such as Aprepitant and Dolasetron, and appetite stimulants like Dronabinol and Megestrol. With cannabis, it would reduce the number of substances that the patient is taking from three to just one. However, it would also mean that the patient would be frequently consuming cannabis, which can result in quicker tolerance development. And as the patient's tolerance develops, they would either need to consume more cannabis or ingest it more frequently. As a result, "craft cannabis" cultivators have dedicated their profession to providing consumers with more potent and premium products that are enjoyed by both medical and recreational consumers. Craft cultivators engage in a meticulous process which requires them to monitor each individual plant to ensure an organic and healthy growth. In addition, by individually examining each plant, cultivators can also assure high-quality cannabinoid content, which makes the strain much more potent than if it had been mass-produced. "Recreational cannabis will be huge but increasing interest in medicinal cannabis, global market growth and involvement from Big Pharma could make medical cannabis the larger of the two markets," said Scott McGovern, Founder of Blocklr and Growth Nuts. "One thing is for certain: The market for cannabis medications will continue to grow as baby boomers come of age, stigma decreases and continuing research confirms the effectiveness of cannabis for many common ailments."

Pasha Brands Ltd. (OTC: CRFTF) (CSE: CRFT) is also listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the ticker (CSE: CRFT). Earlier last week, the Company announced that "its wholly owned subsidiary, BC Craft Supply Co. Ltd ("BC Craft"), has signed a supply agreement with Canada's first licensed micro processor, North 40 Cannabis ("North 40").

Founded by Gord Nichol in Nipawin, Saskatchewan, North 40 Cannabis received its micro-cultivation and micro-processing licences from Health Canada on July 26, 2019. Under the agreement with Pasha, North 40 will supply BC Craft with North 40's annual production, to be sold as dried flower and other cannabis products in Canada.

'I'm absolutely thrilled to have signed an agreement with a company like Pasha,' said Gord Nichol, founder of North 40 Cannabis. 'They have shown micro cultivators like me that they are dedicated to ensuring craft producers in Canada will flourish under legalization. I'm excited to move ahead and looking forward to our first harvest this year.' North 40 Cannabis will plant its first legal crop in August 2019 and harvest later in the fall.

With Canada's current licensed cannabis producers only able to supply an estimated 15 per cent of what Canadians are consuming, Pasha is optimistic that, in addition to its previously established supply agreement with Hearst Organic, this new supply agreement with a licensed micro cultivator and micro processor will help correct the cannabis supply imbalance and bring exciting new products to market. Each micro cultivator in Canada will be able to produce approximately 500 kilograms of cannabis per year, while each micro processor can process up to 600 kilograms of cannabis per year. Canada has tens of thousands of craft producers operating in the illicit cannabis market and Pasha's wholly-owned subsidiary BC Craft Supply Co. is focused on helping as many small farmers transition into the regulated market as possible.

'Signing this agreement with Canada's first micro processor is very significant as it affirms BC Craft's business model with not only the micro-cultivation market but also now with processors,' said Jason Longden, CEO of Pasha Brands in reaction to the news. 'North 40 has established a state-of-the-art cultivation and processing facility and we are proud to work with such an innovative team. This is simply the next step in fulfilling our goal of becoming the biggest producer of craft cannabis products in Canada and I'm confident North 40 will help us bring Canadians more of the cannabis that they're looking for.'

About Pasha Brands: Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Pasha is a vertically integrated, prohibition-era brand house firmly rooted in BC's craft cannabis industry, which boasts an international reputation. With proven capabilities in cannabis cultivation, genetic research and development, product processing, and retail, Pasha is uniquely positioned in the new legal cannabis market through its network of hundreds of craft cannabis suppliers under the Pasha umbrella.

Pasha subsidiary, Medcann Health Products Ltd., is a Health Canada licensed cultivator and processor with a licence to sell medical cannabis products in Canada.

Pasha and BC Craft are also developing a craft cannabis campus, which is dedicated to bringing craft quality into the newly legal cannabis market in Canada. BC Craft is driven to assist craft growers in obtaining security clearance and licensing to grow as micro-cultivators, specializing in education and compliance to bring growers into the regulated cannabis supply market. Pasha's common shares trade on the CSE under the symbol "CRFT" and on the FSE under the symbol "ZZD". For more information, please visit"

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Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. (NYSE: IIPR) is a self-advised Maryland corporation focused on the acquisition, ownership and management of specialized industrial properties leased to experienced, state-licensed operators for their regulated medical-use cannabis facilities. Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. recently announced that it had closed on the acquisition of a property in Scott Township, Pennsylvania, and entered into a long-term lease and development agreement with a subsidiary of PharmaCann LLC for an approximately 23,000 sq. ft.industrial facility and an approximately 31,000 sq. ft. greenhouse facility on the property. "PharmaCann has demonstrated very clearly over time its dedication to patients in providing the highest quality products in a compassionate environment, and we are excited to partner with them again as they bring their program to the people of Pennsylvania," said Paul Smithers, President and Chief Executive Officer of IIP. "We look forward to working closely with the PharmaCann team in the development of this new facility that will provide them the highly controlled environment to meet their exacting product specifications."

HEXO Corp. (NYSE: HEXO) (TSX: HEXO) is an award-winning consumer packaged goods cannabis company that creates and distributes innovative products to serve the global cannabis market. HEXO Corp recently announced that its dried flower cannabis products are now available to Ontario consumers, after finalizing terms with the Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS). HEXO now adds nine of its dried flower offerings in both 3.5g and 15g SKUs to the OCS, including the Company's award-winning Helios dried flower, which was named Best Sativa at the O'Cannabiz 2019 Industry Awards. "We are thrilled to increase our offering at the OCS," said HEXO Corp Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, Sebastien St-Louis. "Apart from being our nation's most populous province with the highest demand for cannabis products, the Ontario marketplace is among the most competitive—and we are rolling out high quality products to which we believe Ontario consumers will strongly gravitate."

Valens GroWorks Corp. (OTCQB: VGWCF) (TSX-V: VGW) is a vertically integrated provider of Canadian cannabis products developed from our proprietary extraction techniques, with three wholly-owned subsidiaries located in and around Kelowna, BC. Valens GroWorks Corp. announced last year that it has signed a two-part, multi-year agreement with Tarukino Holdings, Inc. The agreement allows Valens to further expand on its product and service offerings to compliment the extraction market while also securing a strong foothold in the developing Canadian cannabis-infused beverage, edible and topical categories. Under the agreement, Tarukino grants Valens the exclusive Canadian rights to the production and distribution of its proprietary emulsion technology that transforms cannabis oil and oil-based terpenes into water-soluble forms for use in beverages, edibles, topicals and other consumer products. This technology, better known in the industry as SōRSE™, allows cannabis infused products to maintain potency when heated, chilled or frozen, and removes all cannabis taste and smell, enabling Valens to develop their own innovative self branded products while making SōRSE™ directly available to the Canadian market. "One of the many key benefits of utilizing "SōRSE™ technology in edibles and infused beverages includes being able to dramatically decrease the time for onset and how long it lasts after consumption. This will improve the experience for our consumers and ultimately paves the path for how we believe cannabis will be consumed in the future," said Tyler Robson, Chief Executive Officer, Valens GroWorks.

Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. (OTCQX: HRVSF) (CSE: HARV), headquartered in Tempe, Arizona, is a multi-state cannabis operator (MSO) and vertically-integrated cannabis company. Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. recently announced the opening of its sixth Florida medical marijuana dispensary. Harvest holds licenses in Florida for up to 35 medical dispensaries, one cultivation facility, one manufacturing facility, and has operational dispensaries in the Orlandoand Tallahassee markets. Nationwide, pending finalization of recent acquisitions, Harvest will have rights to more than 210 facilities, approximately 135 of which being retail locations, in 18 states and territories across the country. "We're thrilled to be bringing our high-quality cannabis products to patients in Gainesville as we continue to expand our footprint in Florida, the third most populous state in the country," said Executive Chairman, Jason Vedadi. "We're looking forward to opening many more of our award-winning dispensaries in order to bring premium cannabis experiences to all Floridians."

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