Patent and Trademark Issues

This is the final post in the blog series. Read part 1 and part 2.

While AK Futures LLC v. Boyd St. Distro, LLC (9th Cir. May 19, 2022) may seem like a golden opportunity for companies in the intoxicating hemp market, it is unlikely to be much of a windfall beyond the near future. Those relying on this decision to provide legitimacy to their business should proceed with extreme caution based on previous responses to loopholes and governmental eagerness to regulate intoxicants such as delta-8. To believe that these products will be held to a lesser standard than state-regulated (and soon enough, federally-regulated) marijuana products would be short-sighted and naïve.

Continue Reading That Ninth Circuit Delta-8 Opinion and What’s Followed – It’s Not a Green Light for Intoxicating Hemp, Part 3

As mentioned in the first post of this series, it is unlikely that AK Futures LLC v. Boyd St. Distro, LLC (9th Cir. May 19, 2022) will be viewed as the conclusive victory that some in the delta-8 THC arena are hoping for. In this post, we will explore what might be accomplished by (or more accurately, what backlash might come from) this and other similar decisions.

Continue Reading That Ninth Circuit Delta-8 Opinion and What’s Followed – It’s Not a Green Light for Intoxicating Hemp, Part 2

The debate surrounding delta-8 THC and the proper regulation of intoxicating hemp products has accelerated greatly over the last several months, fueled by multiple court decisions, federal policy actions, and new state laws. Not least of which is last May’s decision in AK Futures LLC v. Boyd St. Distro, LLC, No. 21-56133, 2022 WL 1574222 (9th Cir. May 19, 2022). This case provides a great deal of clarity for many seeking to enforce trademark protections for hemp products. It is a major win for intoxicating hemp maximalists, and in hindsight, it feels like the start of many that came this summer. However, it would be unwise to see these developments as a final green light to produce and sell delta-8, delta-10, hemp-derived delta-9, and other intoxicating hemp products across the country.

Continue Reading That Ninth Circuit Delta-8 Opinion and What’s Followed – It’s Not a Green Light for Intoxicating Hemp, Part 1

Husch Blackwell’s Matt Kamps and Andrea Shoffstall were recently published by Marijuana Ventures in an article where they review U.S. cannabis-centric patents and patent applications trends during the pandemic, which were granted and published at record numbers in 2021. However, early returns in 2022 suggest the numbers may take a dip for the first time

In an article published in Marijuana Venture, Husch Blackwell attorneys Nicole Bashor, Steve Levine and Matt Kamps analyze cannabis-centric patent data to see if patents and applications are continuing the rising trend. They also discuss how the current political landscape and the global health crisis could impact the cannabis industry. Read more in

In our previous post, we touched on some of the interesting issues related to the enforcement of cannabis patents through litigation. In this post, we turn to an alternative to litigation to discuss some of the unique cannabis-related issues that could arise before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“PTAB”) of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”).

Continue Reading Unique Issues with Cannabis-related Patents and Their Enforcement

The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”) reiterated once again that you cannot register marijuana marks at the federal level. The TTAB announced its decision on July 16, 2019, rejecting Canopy Growth Corporation’s, a Canadian corporation, trademark filings for marijuana vaporizers “Juju Rx” and “Juju Hybrid.” In re Canopy Growth Corporation by assignment from JJ206

Trademark practitioners, hemp producers, and hemp-derived product manufacturers have long struggled with the clash of federal and state law regarding protection of trademarks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Historically, the USPTO has refused registration of marks that include cannabis, hemp, CBD or derived products on the basis that these marks were unable to have lawful use in commerce under existing federal law. These waters became even murkier after the passage of the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018 (known as the 2018 Farm Bill), which removed “hemp” from the list of controlled substances under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). On May 2, 2019, the USPTO issued Examination Guide 1-19, outlining the USPTO’s policies with respect to trademarks including legal CBD and hemp-derived goods and services since passage of the 2018 Farm Bill. This appears to open the door for registration of marks that include legal CBD, hemp or hemp-derived products (such as hemp oil), or services such as the cultivation or production of hemp.

Continue Reading USPTO Issues Guidance on CBD and Hemp Trademarks After the 2018 Farm Bill