Open Cannabis Project (OCP) is closed as of May 31, 2019.

We are incredibly thankful to everyone who supported our work.

Here are some places you can go to find OCP’s remaining bits and pieces.

This website has been archived on the Wayback Machine at the Internet Archive. It will likely go out of service when our hosting service expires in September, 2019.

The database is available at ocpdb.pythonanywhere.com. We’re sorry, there is no API at this time. However, we encourage people to scrape this thing and make your own. 5/31 – our developer is working on some documentation. We’ll link to it here when he’s done.

Like we said in our sunset announcement, this organization may be done, but there is still a ton of work to do — including bringing more compassion into the situation.

The cannabis community still needs better documentation systems for legal, scientific, environmental and R&D reasons, as well as community-led frameworks to support it.

Growers and breeders still need legal resources to help them protect their work — and, really, legal resources in general.

There are still overbroad patents that could be countered, though they aren’t just on plants and likely require a new strategy.

We still have to figure out what our standards are for working together, because if we never do, we don’t stand a chance of surviving in this new era.

If you’re interested in staying in the loop about future projects related to these ideas, sign up below.


This goes to OCP’s old mailing list, which for now is managed by Beth Schechter.

In the meantime, if you have thoughts about data and IP, consider giving us your thoughts in these surveys.

They are hosted on Beth’s website, as this one will no longer be monitored.

We also invite you to watch these videos from our final public engagement: a Legal & Advocacy Clinic at the 2019 Cultivation Classic.

The workshop covered cannabis patents, cultivar licensing and registration, interstate commerce — including some of the groundbreaking work being done at the Craft Cannabis Alliance (CCA) — and concluded with FDA regulations for hemp. Many thanks to Carla Quisenberry (Miller Nash), Kristin Stankiewicz (Greenspoon Marder), Adam Smith (CCA), and Kamran Aryah (Kight Law) for your participation.

And now, here is what was on our homepage before we decided to close.

//

Thanks to nearly 80 years of prohibition, cannabis is suffering from a bad case of both misinformation and missing information.

Open cannabis data can fill the information gap.

Through aggregating cannabis lab results, and making this data publicly available, we can start to answer some important legal and scientific questions:

What are the chemical and genetic characteristics of all of the cannabis plants that exist? What does this reveal about the kinds of innovative and distinctive breeding opportunities that have yet to be explored?

What are the differences between varieties with the same name? Just how similar – or different – are 100 or 1000 unique samples of Blue Dream?

What are the differences between data sets from different labs, and how do those results play into the greater world of cannabis data? Are there opportunities for creating data standards?

These questions only begin to scratch the surface of what we might be able to learn this open data set.

Open cannabis data → Evidence of prior art & defensive documentation

One very important reason to create an open data set is to create evidence of prior art, which helps to ensure that patents are not issued on plants that already exist. This need became apparent in 2015, when the first utility patent on a whole category of cannabis plants was issued by the USPTO. The plant described in the claims resembles plants that people had grown before; evidence that could counter the patent has reportedly been rejected because it had not been published publicly.

We never want to see this happen again.

This is why creating prior art for cannabis is so important.

Path of a patent and the role of prior art

The USPTO and other patenting bodies internationally can’t legally grant patents that would cover existing varieties – but there has to be proof that these varieties DO exist. We can block this process by providing this proof: documenting genetic and chemical data for all of the cannabis varieties in existence today.

To ensure our work is viewed by the USPTO, we aim to publish it in a format listed as Prior Art per the Manual of Patent Examination Procedure – such as an academic article, a prior art database, or another technical publication.

If you have ideas for this kind of publication or would like to work together on such a project, please get in touch.