How Biotech Went From “No Way” to Payday with Cannabis

How Biotech Went From “No Way” to Payday with Cannabis

Genetic engineers want to make bio-pot, for fun and health, but their venture could backfire if they help create a public health menace.

Last fall John Melo, the CEO of the synthetic-biology company Amyris, traveled to Amsterdam to visit one of his company’s largest investors. During the long weekend, the former oil executive says, he took a side trip to hang out in the city’s famous “coffee shops.”

He wanted to interview pot smokers.

“What made you do this, how often do you do this?” Melo says he asked.  “I really wanted to understand the psyche here. What are they looking for, and what do they get?”

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