Marijuana is now Legal in Canada (Oct 17, 2018)

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Post by Simmons on Fri 09 Nov 2018, 9:11 am

Gananoque may ban pot smoking in public

Nov 09, 2018

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Post by Powergunner on Mon 19 Nov 2018, 8:13 pm

Cannabis on credit? These are the privacy concerns

Colin Perkel, The Canadian Press
Published Sunday, November 18, 2018

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Post by Hammercore on Sun 25 Nov 2018, 8:54 pm

Former soldier finds new career in cannabis industry

CTVNews.ca Staff
Published Sunday, November 25, 2018


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Post by Jackson on Mon 17 Dec 2018, 12:29 pm

Cannabis report card: How's the legal pot regime working for Canadians?

Sonja Puzic, CTVNews.ca
Published Monday, December 17, 2018

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Two months after recreational cannabis was legalized, Canada’s new pot regime is still working out kinks in the supply chain and the enforcement of new rules.

Before the cannabis legislation came into force, the federal government listed its key objectives for the historic shift. Those goals include keeping cannabis “out of the hands of children and youth,” curbing illegal marijuana sales, and ensuring a safe supply of quality pot across the country.

More than 60 days after the first legal cannabis sales were made on Oct. 17, are those objectives being met? CTVNews.ca takes a look at how reality measures up against some of the government’s main promises.

Keep cannabis away from children

The Cannabis Act states that only adults aged 18 or older can legally purchase, possess and grow small amounts of weed. Provinces and territories were allowed to impose their own age restrictions, and the majority have set 19 as the legal age.

Quebec’s new Coalition Avenir Quebec government made good on its election campaign promise and tabled legislation that would raise the province’s legal cannabis consumption age to 21 – the highest in Canada.

Of course, those age restrictions don’t guarantee that younger teens and kids won’t be getting their hands on pot. It remains to be seen whether legalization will actually reduce cannabis consumption among minors.

Reduce number of Canadians with criminal records

One of the main pillars of the Cannabis Act is reducing the burden on the Canadian justice system by eliminating criminal charges for simple pot possession. But what about those who were charged or convicted of the crime before Oct. 17, 2018?

In October, the federal government announced its intention to issue pardons to Canadians who have criminal records for possession of 30 grams of cannabis or less.

The legislation “to make things fairer” was expected to be tabled before the end of 2018, but that did not happen before MPs wrapped things up in Ottawa for the holiday break. When it eventually becomes law, those eligible for pardons will be able to apply as soon as the law is in effect, with no waiting period or application fees.

The Liberal government, however, has been criticized for not opting to expunge the criminal records of Canadians convicted of simple possession. An expungement would remove any record of a criminal conviction, while a pardon seals the record but does not erase it.

Safe supply of cannabis

The federal government pledged to “establish and enforce a strict system of production, distribution and sales” of cannabis, with a focus on regulation of quality and safety.

But some Canadians have reported receiving mouldy cannabis.

One cannabis manufacturer, RedeCan, recalled its B.E.C. strain in November after receiving reports of mould in some products sold in Ontario and British Columbia.

Under federal regulations, cannabis producers have to keep a sample of every batch they send to market.

Eliminate illicit pot sales

This is another long-term objective of the Cannabis Act, but numerous hiccups in the legal cannabis supply chain have done little to curb distribution of illegal weed.

Despite numerous warnings to illegal cannabis stores – and police raids in several cities across the country – some illicit dispensaries say they’ve been busier than ever since Oct. 17.

Some consumers told The Canadian Press they continued to get their weed from illegal dispensaries or elsewhere because of delivery delays like the ones that plagued the Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) in the first month of legalization.

The OCS attributed delays to high demand for cannabis products, but the nationwide rotating strikes by Canada Post workers were also blamed for slow deliveries.

The online OCS is currently the only legal outlet for recreational cannabis in Ontario, with brick-and-mortar stores expected in 2019.

In the first few weeks of business, the office of the Ontarioombudsman received more than 1,000 complaints about the OCS, related to delivery delays, poor customer service and issues with billing.

By the third week of November, the provincial government said the OCS had eliminated its backlog and deliveries were “back on track.”

British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Quebec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick also reported varying degrees of cannabis shortages.

New Brunswick was forced to temporarily close more than half its stores in early November, and the Quebec Cannabis Corporation had to reduce its store opening hours due to shortages.

Access to medical cannabis

One of the government’s principal objectives in legalizing recreational pot was to provide “access to quality-controlled cannabis for medical purposes.”

But medical cannabis users have complained that, since Oct. 17, they’ve experienced persistent product shortages and shipment delays.

Users of medical cannabis can only buy products from specific licensed producers if they want their health insurance to cover the cost. When their preferred strain or product is not available, they either have to go without, or pay out of pocket for products from a recreational pot retailer.

Health Canada admitted last month that there have been localized shortages of medical cannabis since legalization, and said they are expected to continue for months.

Protecting public health and safety

The federal government has vowed to strengthen laws aimed at punishing “more serious cannabis offences,” including selling and distributing pot to children and youth, and driving under the influence of cannabis.

Legislation known as Bill C-46 sets prohibited blood drug concentrations of THC, the main psychoactive compound of cannabis, for drivers. It also outlines penalties for drug offences, which range from fines to imprisonment, depending on the severity and number of offences committed.

As a result of Bill C-46, police can now demand a sample of saliva for roadside drug screening. However, the only device approved for roadside drug testing in Canada has been met with criticism, with some police forces even saying they will not be using it at all.

Critics say the Drager DrugTest 5000 doesn't work in sub-zero temperatures, is too bulky for roadside tests and takes too long to produce a sample. But the federal government has defended the device, saying its approval was based on scientific recommendations of the Drugs and Driving Committee.

Bill C-46 also amended Canada’s drunk-driving laws to allow police officers to conduct mandatory roadside alcohol breath tests without requiring a suspicion that the driver had been drinking.

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Post by Reggie on Mon 01 Apr 2019, 8:32 am

Ontario cannabis stores set to open today, but not all ready to go

The Canadian Press
Published Monday, April 1, 2019





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Post by RevForce on Wed 10 Apr 2019, 9:19 pm

Power Play: Pushing up the price of pot April 10, 2019

Ivan Ross Vrana of H+K Strategies talks about why the price of legal marijuana in Canada is so much higher than black market marijuana.



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Post by Phantom on Thu 09 May 2019, 8:33 am

Where's the party? Survey finds Canadians losing interest in legalized cannabis

Marijuana is now Legal in Canada (Oct 17, 2018)  - Page 9 Image

Published Thursday, May 9, 2019

Canadians appear to be sticking to pre-legalization methods of buying cannabis, while the stigma around the drug remains high and overall support for legalization seems to be fading, a new survey suggests.

The survey by researchers at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia and the University of Guelph in Ontario found that 50.1 per cent of surveyed Canadians agree with the federal government’s decision to legalize cannabis, down from 68.6 per cent in 2017. The percentage of people who say they neither agree nor disagree with legalization has nearly tripled, from just under seven per cent to more than 20 per cent.

Sylvain Charlebois, the Dalhousie professor who led the study, believes the government may have intentionally attempted to dampen the enthusiasm and excitement that surrounded legalization, leading to the current decline in enthusiasm.

“A few years ago, the Liberals invited Canada to a huge party with balloons, great music, great fun – only to end up in a very boring room with classical music,” Charlebois told CTVNews.ca.

Support for legalization was found to be highest in Atlantic Canada, at 56.3 per cent. B.C., which led the country in 2017 with 79.2 per cent support, showed the least zeal this time around, as 49.3 per cent of B.C. residents said they still agree legalization is a good idea.

The study was based on an online survey of 1,051 Canadians over four days in April. It has an estimated margin of error of 3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

PURCHASING PROBLEMS

Another factor behind the drop in support could be the supply shortages and slow retail roll-outs that have plagued parts of Canada since legalization.

The study found that a majority of Canadian cannabis consumers are still buying at least some of their cannabis from the same sources they used pre-legalization, with 31 per cent reporting no change in their points of purchase and 30 per cent saying they use new, legal means of procuring the drug only some of the time.

Price, quality and convenience were repeatedly cited as the biggest reasons behind Canadians’ decision to stick with their existing cannabis suppliers. Charlebois said privacy is another major factor.

“I’m not sure that people are willing to compromise that by just walking into a shop owned by a Crown corporation. There’s nothing private about that,” he said.

The stigma seems to persist beyond the point of purchase. More than one-third of people surveyed for the study said they would not want to work with someone who uses cannabis recreationally. There were also significant declines from 2017 in the percentage of people who expressed interested in purchasing cannabis-infused foods at restaurants and supermarkets, with 25 per cent of respondents going as far as to say they would stop frequenting a restaurant if it introduced cannabis-infused foods to its menu.

“We’re far, far away from seeing cannabis becoming socially normalized – we’re actually quite a few years away,” Charlebois said.

WHAT ABOUT EDIBLES?

Cannabis enthusiasm may ramp up this fall, as the government has set Oct. 17 as the latest possible date for edibles to be legally available to consumers.

While slightly more than six per cent of people surveyed for the study said they started using cannabis after it was legalized, 20 per cent said they would consider trying it once edibles – a category including foods, beverages, lotions and inhalable extracts – become available.

That might seem like a large potential market to be captured, but Charlebois said the cannabis industry is retreating from its initial optimism around edibles because of draft regulations released by Health Canada.

The draft regulations suggest that the government is looking to mandate plain packaging for all edibles intended to be sold, while not allowing any package to contain more than a single dose of the psychoactive cannabinoid THC.

No date has been given for the release of the finalized regulations for commercial producers of edibles, only that they will be made public no later than Oct. 17.

Four days after that is election day – something Charlebois expects is weighing heavily on the government’s mind as it attempts to live up to its promise of legalizing cannabis while also avoiding the appearance of celebrating it.

“They’re so obsessed with the idea of limiting risks,” he said.

“The last thing they want is some five-year-old kid who accidentally ingested a cannabis-infused chocolate bar and ended up in hospital in the middle of the campaign.”





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Post by Zapper-88 on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 6:12 pm

Legal pot price as much as 80 per cent more than illicit: StatCan

Armina Ligaya, The Canadian Press

Published Wednesday, July 10, 2019


Marijuana is now Legal in Canada (Oct 17, 2018)  - Page 9 Image
A still image from the Ontario Cannabis Store website is pictured. (Handout)





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