About Todd Scattini
Todd is the CEO of Harvest 360, a Strategic Advisor for Aphaea Capital Investments, and the European representative of Charlotte’s Web Botanicals.
He is an unconventional U.S. Army combat veteran and an experienced, multi-lingual military diplomat with over thirteen years of service in Europe. He is a versatile, focused, and highly skilled professional on a mission to captivate the emerging cannabis industry and help facilitate international trade of cannabis technologies and all the wonders the plant has to offer.
He began his study of cannabis while serving as a senior adviser to the Commander of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. He discovered very quickly the roots of American and global prohibition and set out to make a change on an international level. He also quickly learned that the medical use of cannabis has specific military applications that should be fully explored and made available for all.
His goal is to connect the rapidly maturing North American cannabis industry with the budding European market through cooperation and leveraging strategic partnerships. He speaks Czech, French, German, and Serbo-Croatian.
Is this your first time to Prague?
No. I have actually been to Prague many times. I learned Czech as a young soldier in 1990 and have had a long love affair with the Czech Republic and the Czech people. I actually lived in Brno (the 2nd largest city in the Czech Republic) while I attended the Czech military academy. Prague has such a rich history, and is filled with the most amazing people. I have always dreamed of working with Czechs after retiring from the military, so I’m here to start making that happen.
What message do you hope to get across for the cannabis industry?
I hope to deliver the message that the rapidly maturing North American cannabis industry can be a great partner and mentor for the Czech industry and the European market space, as a whole. We have learned a lot of hard lessons in N. America, and we are prepared to partner and share intellectual property through licensing agreements, and to advise on all aspects of the industry so that our European partners don’t have to “reinvent the wheel”.
Would you support the legalization of cannabis if it had no medical value?
Without a doubt I would support legalization. I have never been so fascinated by any one subject as I am with cannabis. I am so interested in all aspects from social justice, job creation, revenue for states and local governments, and many more. The fact that cannabis has proven to be so effective medically and provide relief for patients suffering from a broad range of ailments is just a bonus. No one should be put into a cage and have their lives ruined over their choice to use a non-toxic and non-addictive plant that might just save their lives. No longer should adults have to fear losing government entitlements, their livelihoods, or the respect of others by making the smarter choice to use cannabis instead of alcohol, tobacco, or pharmaceuticals which have caused significant devastation in the U.S. alone.
What’s the best medical cannabis story you have heard?
For me, I still cannot hold back tears when I watch the video of little Charlotte Figi who was treated by Charlotte’s Web full-spectrum hemp oil for her intractable epilepsy. I associate so much with this story, because Charlotte is a so-called ‘military brat’ like my own children. I saw the determination of a ‘military Mom’ in her mother, Page to save her child no matter what the cost or risk. I felt the family’s frustration and disbelief when an effective treatment for Charlotte was in reach the whole time, yet the government for which Charlotte’s father worked prohibits its use. Charlotte’s father is a soldier like me, and I am so happy for their family that Charlotte is not only surviving, but thriving today because of cannabis derived medication. I am also incredibly proud to be associated with CW Hemp and the Stanley Brothers. I look forward to forwarding their efforts in Europe and helping more patients gain access to this life-changing medicine.
What was your first experience with cannabis?
I am the kind of standard American who had a few experiences during high school, but once I entered into the military I was subjugated to regular urinalysis screenings. I have vowed that I will never again work for anyone that seeks to test the quality of my character by the content of my urine. I would like to have access to cannabis to treat many of the ailments that come with service to your nation in the military. I think that all adults (and children who need it) should be able to make that choice.
Has cannabis ever landed you in trouble?
No, but I recognize the sensitivity of the subject and the legal danger associated with its use and with the evolving cannabis industry. But, I’m a bit of a rebel in this sense. I believe so deeply in this plant, and I know that it can help so many patients who are suffering. I focus heavily on the veteran population in the U.S. and seek to increase access for our veterans to help prevent suicide (22 U.S. veterans a day take their own lives), and prevent veteran dependency on opioid medications. I was taught to take bold action while at West Point and throughout my military career. And, I will never back down from this fight.
If the global cannabis movement hadn’t begun, what would you be doing instead?
I would probably have stayed in the military. I love my job in the Army. I am what is known as a Foreign Area Officer. We are a select group of officers who focus on particular regions of the world. I was lucky enough to get Europe as my focus area. Our mission is to provide assistance to our senior military officers and diplomats to understand the region. We help forward U.S. goals and strategic objectives through security assistance and security cooperation. My goal is to forward the strategic objectives of U.S. and Canadian cannabis companies through engagement and representation in Europe. I hope to provide guidance, education, and training to European countries through licensing agreements, transfer of intellectual property, and continuous partnership. Today, the global cannabis market is evolving. I plan to be a part of it and I think the best way I can do it is to apply the languages, skills, and talents within the framework developed through my many years of military and diplomatic service.
Where do you see the industry in 10 years?
In 10 years the global cannabis industry will be incredibly mature. Big players are already starting to enter the space and it is poised to evolve rapidly. Soon, cannabis will be as big or bigger than alcohol. The only difference is that our industry will not be responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths globally. That is not meant to denigrate the alcohol industry, by the way. I don’t think that is what we should do. I enjoy a good beer. I love good wine. I would just like to have access to cannabis for adults without the threat of arrest and incarceration.
What are your plans outside of the convention, business or pleasure?
I am very fortunate to be reconnecting with so many of my friends living in Prague. I have great friends who are expats, fellow academy graduates, and members of the Czech Armed Forces.
How is your diary looking for the next six months?
My agenda is jam packed. I just retired from the U.S. Army after 27 years of service, and making the leap into the civilian world while building a company is incredibly time-consuming and stressful. It is, however, very personally rewarding. There is a certain satisfaction one feels when you finally figure out exactly why you have been placed on this planet. My company and I are hard at work increasing our network and providing consulting and management services to companies in the industry. Additionally, we are working hard on The Athena Protocol which is our effort to prevent and treat traumatic brain injury (TBI) chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).