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Med-Tech World has compiled a list of 10 celebrities investing in the world of medical cannabis. Undeniably, these celebrities are helping cannabis move into the mainstream and unravelling the stigma surrounding the commodity.
Over the past few years, what was once shunned by society is now not only a highly coveted commodity, but also big business for investors and pharmacologists. In addition to it’s plethora of benefits including chronic pain and anxiety relief, it therefore isn’t surprising that celebrities have jumped on the cannabis rush by either investing in cannabis or becoming aptly named ‘cannapreneurs’.
Grease star and Grammy award-winning artist Olivia Newton-John has become an enthusiast for medical cannabis after her husband, John Easterling, had recommend it to her to alleviate the effects of her breast cancer. It was his wife’s cancer that brought a new passion to Easterling, creating products aimed to help patients overcome cancer related challenges with cannabis.
Together the pair grow cannabis at their ranch as part of their business, the Amazon Herb Company.
Speaking to Today, Newton-John shared how using medical cannabis products has helped her relieve discomfort during her cancer journey involving radiotherapy, chemotherapy and surgeries:
I have metastasised breast cancer; I’m going through my third bout with it, and medicinal cannabis has been so important for me. I absolutely believe all patients should have the right to try it. It is a matter of common-sense, and it is a compassionate thing to do for people,
The Law & Order creator Dick Wolf reportedly invested $1.5 million into DigiPath, a Las Vegas–based provider of lab-testing and cannabis-education services. This follows the growing need for cannabis labs year-on-year.
The Back to the Future star has been open about his use of CBD to help cope with Parkinson’s disease (PD), the illness he had been diagnosed with in 1991. His foundation, the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, has conducted extensive studies into the effects of cannabis and CBD against Parkinson’s.
The one half of the Cheech & Chong comedy duo from the cult classic Up in Smoke reveled a new line of cannabis goods in 2015 named Chong’s Choice. The products hit 25 California medical marijuana dispensaries during it’s first launch. The celebrated funnyman has claimed cannabis oil cured his prostate cancer in 2010 and, while sadly experiencing a relapse in 2015, still uses CBD to relieve negative symptoms.
In a 2020 interview with Medical Cannabis Network, the cannabis-advocate shared:
We’re going back to the future with cannabis
Grammy award winner Melissa Etheridge entered the medical cannabis industry after feeling disheartened towards the industry’s lack of representation for middle-aged women, as well as the personal benefits she experienced with medical cannabis during painful chemotherapy sessions for breast cancer in 2004. Etheridge is planning on launching Etheridge Farms spanning across 47 acres in California’s Santa Cruz Mountains after receiving its first cannabis manufacturing license issued by Santa Cruz County in 2019.
The man behind infamous roles such as Captain Picard in Star Trek, and Professor Charles Xavier in the X-Men saga reveled he is investing and has joined the board of Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies in England who look into the medical benefits of cannabis. More specifically, the company supports research into medical cannabis as an alternative treatment for a host of health issues including inflammatory diseases, cancer, pain management and neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s and MS.
His interest for the medical cannabis comes after becoming a daily cannabis user a few years ago, telling NME that he uses cannabis to help him relieve pain associated with his ortho-arthritis in both of his hands. He shared he “purchased an ointment, spray, and edibles” from a dispensary after securing his medical marijuana card.
TV personality and founder of the Montel Williams MS Foundation, Montel Williams launched Lenitiv Scientific, a line of medical cannabis and hemp products for patients and adult users, in 2017. In the recent EMERGE Virtual Cannabis Conference, Williams said that the company is set to release a new offering of CBD and THC products. He also stressed his goal of taking the products internationally. The award-winning media personality became an advocate for medical cannabis after being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) in 1999, and has used cannabis products ever since to help manage the disease’s symptoms.
Williams now produces a cannabis-focused podcast aiming to destigmatise cannabis for medical purposes:
I have a podcast that’s called Let’s Be Blunt with Montel where I have been very fortunate to able to interview some of the industry leaders, frontrunners, fore-thinkers in this industry,
The British billionaire and founder of Virgin Group, Sir Richard Branson, has fought the battle to legalise cannabis for medical use for years. According to Forbes, Virgin Group invested an undisclosed amount in Sidecar, a company that delivered medical marijuana to patients in San Francisco via a partnership with ‘Uber for weed’ startup Meadow, in 2019.
He is also a member of the Global Commission on Drug Policy, a group of international politicians and experts fighting to reduce the harm caused by drugs to people and societies.
During his keynote speech at the 2016 Sage Summit at McCormick Place in Chicago, the business mogul explained:
Together with countless other tireless advocates, I’ve for years argued that we should treat drug use as a health issue, not as a crime. While the vast majority of recreational drug users never experience any problems, people who struggle with drug addiction deserve access to treatment, not a prison cell.
Actress and The View co-Host Whoopi Goldberg is also the Co-Founder of Whoopi & Maya, a company that specialised in the legal distribution of medical marijuana. Co-Founder Maya Elisabeth is an industry veteran who pioneered the female perspective to cannabis by creating cannabis infused menstrual pain relief products with Om Edibles. According to their website, the brand aimed “to offer safe, natural relief for period pain through the miracle of medical cannabis”. The company however shut down towards the beginning of 2020.
Goldberg herself has spoken openly about the immense benefits she has experienced using marijuana for her glaucoma. In a column for The Cannabist, she shared the importance of her vaporised pen when it came to coping with the condition, affectionately referring to her vape pen as a “she”:
[H]er ability to help me live comfortably with glaucoma makes her one of the more important figures in my day to day,
The God’s plan rapper entered the cannabis industry with business venture “More Life Growth Co.”. The company is offering “Cannabis products and accessories, medical cannabis, THC and CBD”. In partnership with Canopy Growth, one of Canada’s premiere growers, the business venture opened in Drake’s hometown of Toronto. More Life Growth Co. is a fully licenced producer of cannabis pioneering “wellness, discovery and overall personal growth”.
Canopy Growth CEO Mark Zekulin said in a press release:
When we first began talks with Drake we were extremely inspired by and aligned with his vision to bring best-in-class cannabis products to the world,
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