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Cannabis Tech

The future of cannabis patents lies in blockchain technology

  • The cannabis industry is looking to the ever-popular blockchain to begin revolutionizing the way entrepreneurs and business owners lay claim to their marijuana-based discoveries.
  • Standard pattening is becoming archaic, now that there are so many individuals seeking to diversify the Cannabis market, via innovative topicals, drinks, smokeables, and more. Blockchain technology could provide instantaneous, and verifiable receipts that are easier to obtain, cross-examen, and validate.
  • Robert Galarza, CEO of Canada-based BLOCKStrain Technology: ” “Growers don’t need to trust blockchain companies, or even one another. They just need to trust the technology.”

For consumers to have true product choices in the budding cannabis space, growers and breeders need to protect their intellectual property through a modernized system. As it stands, the patent application process is arduous and outdated, posing as a barrier to cannabis market entrants.

From cannabis-laced lozenges to plant-breeding techniques and recipes for pot-infused beverages, dozens of cannabis-related patents have been issued in the US ― despite the fact that cannabis is still listed as a Schedule 1 drug. Patent law is complicated, and the discrepancy between US state and federal legalization laws, as well as Canadian laws, causes problems for growers.

The cannabis industry is projected to reach $63 billion by 2024. That’s plenty of opportunity for companies to profit from patented strains. As the cannabis industry shifts towards legalization, developing new strains of cannabis is one of the most appealing ways to generate revenue for growers and licensed cannabis companies.

Protecting intellectual property

There are more than 1,400 individual strains of cannabis grown worldwide, and up to 500 known chemical compounds in a single cannabis plant, leaving a number of varieties still open to ‘discovery’.

For decades, growers of illegal cannabis strains have operated in a black market. Although patents are available for cannabis-based products, processes and techniques, growers can’t file a federal patent when they invent a new strain of cannabis since there is no federal legal basis to do so. Without a patent or a way to protect intellectual property, growers can’t prove ownership for a specific strain, and without a trusted record of the strain’s history, there is no way for consumers to verify what they are buying.

In Canada, as the regulated recreational market sits on the near horizon, regulators have stated their intention to establish an “efficient, accountable and transparent system for regulatory oversight of the supply chain.” Blockchain technology has proven that it can solve supply chain issues in other industries, and the same can be said about its impact on the cannabis industry.

“Growers don’t need to trust blockchain companies, or even one another. They just need to trust the technology,” says Robert Galarza, CEO of Canada-based BLOCKStrain Technology (TSXV:DNAX). “Blockchain is the prevailing technology that will provide protection of rights to growers and transparency to consumers.” BLOCKStrain is in the process of developing a blockchain-based platform…

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