Tag: Canada

Dear Justin: I Beg Your Pardons

Hello Justin! The holiday season is just a few weeks away, which means it’s time for kindness, love, and most importantly, forgiveness. Ah forgiveness, a healing exchange that dissolves contempt and resentment, unburdening us from the wrongdoing of others.

Your office’s silence on pardons and amnesty for ‘cannabis criminals’ is an action unworthy of your family legacy.

You’ve shown you understand forgiveness, Justin. You’ve begged forgiveness of our Indigenous Peoples, and apologized for Canada’s conviction of those found guilty of gross indecency for committing homosexual acts—a law loosened in 1969 by your father, Pierre Elliot Trudeau, who historically said, “I think the view we take here is that there’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation.”

And yet, despite your understanding of forgiveness, I’m worried you lack the ability to practice it meaningfully. Your office’s silence and side-stepping concerning pardons for cannabis charges and amnesty for those currently convicted or incarcerated for soon-to-be-legal cannabis crimes is an action unworthy of your family legacy.

Earlier this year, Public Safety Minister, Ralph Goodale said, “The Trudeau government is not considering a blanket pardon for people with criminal records for possessing small amounts of the drug [marijuana]…It is important to note that as the bill moves through the legislative process, existing laws prohibiting possession and use of cannabis remain in place, and they need to be respected.”

RELATED STORY

Leafly List: The Top Cannabis Dispensaries in British Columbia, Fall 2017

I realize there’s concern of a cannabis free-for-all gripping our society as we approach July 1, but this is about logic: If a person is arrested in possession of 30 grams of cannabis or less sometime in the next six months, is it really reasonable for that person to be charged? Is ethical or even practical to entangle them in the legal system? And should those convicted and/or currently imprisoned for such a crime—one that will soon be totally legal—really continue to live in a criminalized world? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, I’d sure love to know why.

While I’m chasing down explanations, brace yourself for a future interrogation on the newly announced excise tax—a one dollar per gram tax that’ll apply not just to recreational sales but also medical cannabis. Do you seriously want to make it more expensive for people with cancer, HIV/AIDS, or chronic pain to access their medicine? Are we really that worried about healthy people faking sick to access a legal drug?

62% of Canadians would support a blanket pardon for cannabis possession offences.

Just for fun, let’s project ourselves into the future: The year is 2045, your own child serves as Prime Minister because this is how we choose leaders now. They stand before a media scrum to deliver a heartfelt apology to Canadians whose lives were derailed by cannabis offences, before the drug became legal. I suspect this vision is not Pierre-approved.

Your government’s reluctance to face this issue makes me think they haven’t read the recent Nanos Research poll indicating that 62% of Canadians would support a blanket pardon for cannabis possession offences. That’s 10% higher than your latest approval rating, by the way. So how do you put into practice what we, the people want? Simple, blame it on the scientists.

RELATED STORY

Cannabis and Arthritis

Researchers at the C.D Howe Institute released a report asking the government to consider pardons as well as dropping outstanding charges to achieve a practical, sensible goal: to free resources for the legalization process itself. And while we’re at it, C.D Howe also wants you to consider pardoning people who have been convicted for illegal possession of cannabis but have no other convictions, and have not been charged with any other Criminal Code offence. Humane, practical, forward thinking, modern and it saves money? Our next Prime Minister Trudeau would be proud.

Now I’m not a fancy, non-profit think tank, but I would ask that you add streamlining the pardon process to your list of things to consider. As it stands, this is a rigorous (and confusing) application process that can begin only five years after a sentence is completed. This time-served, half-decade hangover effectively makes the road back to employment in our desperate job economy all the more difficult to survive.

The charges are piling up, the legal system continues to bloat beyond its capacity, the law is indeed erroneous, and the time to fix it is now.

I will give you half marks for hinting that your government would look into changing the laws. But you only did it when pressed by a constituent who challenged you face-to-face at an event.

“We will change the law,” you replied. “We are taking the time necessary to get it right. Then we will move forward in a thoughtful way on fixing past wrongs that happened because of this erroneous law that I didn’t put in place and that I’m working hard to fix.”

Justin, the charges are piling up, the legal system continues to bloat beyond its capacity, the law is indeed erroneous, and the time to fix it is now.

RELATED STORY

The Best Dab Rig for You

And though cannabis-related offences have been on the decline for the past five years, there were still 55,000 offences in 2016 alone, and about 61,000 in 2015. Without a plan for amnesty and streamlined pardons, Canada faces a great risk: crippling citizens, many of whom are youth, who are simply victims of poor timing and government shortsightedness.

So, this holiday season, instead of dodging the question, you need only stop and ask yourself if you want to be remembered as a leader who will need forgiveness for his unfair actions, or one who applied reason, compassion, and practicality to allow many Canadians to avoid being meaninglessly embroiled in the legal system.

As they say over at C.D Howe, just “consider” it, okay?

Kate


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Alberta Will Sell Cannabis Through Private Retailers and a Government Website

The Alberta government has introduced legislation that, if passed, will see private retailers selling cannabis at brick-and-mortar stores and the province conducting online sales starting next July, when the federal government legalizes cannabis for recreational use.

The minimum age for cannabis consumption will be 18 years old.

The provincial government says this hybrid model of sales is a response to the wishes of people who took part in an online consultation and survey.

At a press conference, Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley said her government has been required to make “a major shift” in a short amount of time. She said the Trudeau government has set “an ambitious deadline” for legalizing recreational cannabis.

RELATED STORY

Leafly List: The Top Cannabis Dispensaries in British Columbia, Fall 2017

“At the end of the day, we had to choose between moving forward and anticipating that we’ll be ready or just leaving it to the federal government. We felt it would be better to move forward with a framework that reflects Albertans’ concerns and values,” she said.

Some other highlights of Bill 26, An Act to Control and Regulate Cannabis:

• The Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission will obtain and distribute legal cannabis to the private retailers as it now does with alcohol.

• The province has determined that cannabis will not be sold in places that sell tobacco, liquor or pharmaceuticals—but has yet to release details about how the private stores will operate.

RELATED STORY

The Best Cannabis Strains and Products for Every Situation

• Smoking or vaping cannabis will be banned in the same public places where smoking is currently banned, including bars and restaurants.

• Consumption of cannabis will also be banned on hospital grounds and in places where children gather, including schools, daycares, pools, playgrounds and sports fields.

• The minimum age for consumption will be 18 years old.

• Adults will be allowed to possess 30 grams of cannabis at any given time.

The government has the power to allow cannabis cafes and lounges to exist but there are no plans for that yet.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Quebec’s Cannabis Regulations: 8 Takeaways

On Thursday, Quebec’s Liberal government tabled Bill 157, the legislation outlining the system of sale and distribution for legal cannabis in the province. Though Public Health Minister Lucie Charlebois describes it as “an evolving plan” which is “not the end,” since “it is certain we will have to adapt,” some facts about it are now fixed.

A crown corporation will be created to sell cannabis products on behalf of the Government of Quebec.

The purpose of the legislation, reads the text of Bill 157, is “to prevent and reduce cannabis harm in order to protect the health and security of the public and of young persons in particular. The Act also aims to ensure the preservation of the cannabis market’s integrity.” Certainly the law’s ability to do that will be up for debate, as critics are already attacking what they see as the legislation’s faults.

Here are eight of the most important factors introduced by Bill 157.

1. The legal age for consumption of cannabis in Quebec will be 18, which was previously semi-confirmed by Liberal government sources in late September. This is in line with the recommendation of the Canadian Pediatric Society, which acknowledges that THC can be harmful to a child’s brain development, but underlines that the brain develops much less between the ages of 18 and 21.

RELATED STORY

Leafly List: The Top Cannabis Dispensaries in British Columbia, Fall 2017

2. A crown corporation, the Société Québécoise du Cannabis (SQC), will be created to sell cannabis products on behalf of the Government of Quebec. The SQS will be administered as a subsidiary of the Société des Alcohols du Québec (SAQ), which distributes alcohol in the province. However, SAQ storefront outlets primarily sell wine and spirits, since lower-alcohol content beverages (beer, wine, and malt liquor products) are legal for sale in grocery stores and dépanneurs. The SQS will be the sole body permitted to sell cannabis products under law. It will also be the only organization allowed to buy, transport, and store cannabis from licensed commercial producers. No forms of cannabis will be approved for sale privately.

Quebec will begin by opening only 20 cannabis storefronts across the province.

3. Though Quebec has a population of 8.3-million, the SQC will begin by opening only 20 storefront locations across the province for the sale of cannabis. However, cannabis will also be available for sale online, provided that it is delivered by Canada Post and signed for by someone of legal age. By contrast, alcohol is available in 406 SAQ outlet locations across Quebec. Unlike SAQ outlets, the 20 SQC storefront locations will not allow minors to enter. No cannabis products in SQC will be accessible to customers without employees handing them over, and no cannabis products are to be made visible from outside the outlets. Each SQC outlet must install a sign on or close to its door including a warning from the Minister of Health “concerning the harmful effects of cannabis on health.”

RELATED STORY

The Best Dab Rig for You

4. While the law does not explicitly outlaw edible cannabis products (in fact acknowledging the possibility of “edible and non-edible” products being subject to government regulation), it does criminalize any attempt to modify the flavour, aroma, or colour of cannabis products. (Au revoir, flavored vape pens.)

5. Despite federal law allowing home-growing of up to four plants of no more than one metre in height, home-growing of cannabis for personal use will remain outlawed in Quebec, and all commercial growing of cannabis will remain illegal except in companies licensed by the government.

Smoking cannabis will be legal in palliative care hospices with designated smoking areas.

6. Smoking or vaping cannabis will be illegal wherever smoking tobacco is illegal under Quebec law, limiting cannabis consumption  more or less to private homes, as well as unenclosed public parks. Also off-limits are obvious locations such as schools and child-care facilities, as well as pubs, taverns, bars, bingo halls, and “enclosed spaces where sports, cultural or artistic activities, or similar activities are held.” However, smoking or vaping cannabis will be legal in palliative care hospices with designated smoking areas. Fines for smoking or vaping cannabis in “an enclosed space” other than a private residence will range from $500 to $1,500, while fines for those who do so in an enclosed space that is also an educational institution or child-care facility will range from $750 to $2,250.

RELATED STORY

Cannabis Strain Recommendations for Beginners and Low-Tolerance Consumers

7. There will be “zero tolerance” for driving under the influence of cannabis. Police will be able to take saliva samples from drivers and potentially impound vehicles for up to 90 days if any presence of cannabis or other drugs is detected in drivers’ saliva. However, there is no ready means available to measure blood-cannabis levels, and recent studies suggest no reliable means exist for exact measures of cannabis intoxication such as are available for alcohol.

Quebec repeated its demand to the federal government to delay the deadline for cannabis legislation at least one more year.

8. On Wednesday, in the leadup to tabling Quebec’s cannabis legislation, the Liberal government of Premier Philippe Couillard repeated its demand to the federal government to delay the deadline for cannabis legislation at least one more year. Health Minister Lucie Charlebois and Finance Minister Carlos Leitao declared that the provincial government would not accept a 50/50 split of cannabis tax revenues with the federal government, and Charlebois argued the two governments needed more time to figure out how to divide cannabis tax revenues. Ottawa previously ignored a similar request by the Quebec government in June.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Canada Wants to Tax Medical Cannabis. Get Ready for a Fight

The Trudeau government’s proposed cannabis tax plan has angered provincial governments—who don’t believe tax revenue should be split evenly between Ottawa and the provinces—but they’re not the only peeved parties.

Medical cannabis patients and producers feel strongly that Ottawa should not be applying an excise tax on medical cannabis — full stop. They say medical cannabis should be exempt from taxation just as most other prescription medications are.

“This proposal feels totally wrong and unfair to medical cannabis patients.”

Jonathan Zaid, Executive Director of CFAMM

 Jonathan Zaid, executive director of CFAMM

In an interview with Leafly, Jonathan Zaid, executive director of Canadians for Fair Access to Medical Marijuana (CFAMM), noted that the majority of Canadians can’t get reimbursed for the cost of medical cannabis because insurance companies don’t cover it as standard practice—and that creates a financial burden.

“Patients are struggling to afford their medicine and this tax would just compound the problem,” he said, adding that many people who rely on medical cannabis are on disability.

“The government’s stated rationale behind this proposal is that they don’t want people feigning illness to acquire cannabis or abusing the system in any way. But that isn’t a legitimate argument for creating an extra burden on the more than 200,000 medical cannabis patients in this country.”

RELATED STORY

A Guide to Canada’s Medical Marijuana Program

The head of Toronto-based Apollo Cannabis Clinics, which provide medical cannabis prescriptions for people with chronic pain, depression, PTSD, and other conditions, says the proposed tax could contribute to a growing public health problem—the opioid crisis.

“Many of our patients are using medical cannabis as a tool to ween off opioids, or as an alternative to opioids altogether, which comes with a significant financial burden to the patient, considering most opioids are covered by insurance and medical cannabis is paid for out of pocket,”  said Bryan Hendin, founder and president of Apollo, to Leafly.

“Adding an additional tax for medical patients on top of the sales tax already charged, is not going to help patients switch to medical cannabis for their chronic pain or other conditions. In fact, it might drive patients back to using opioids entirely. With the opioid crisis in Canada, this is a step in the wrong direction.”

Taxing medical cannabis “is not in line with the taxation of medicine in Canada,” says John Fowler, CEO of Supreme Pharmaceuticals.

Many of the country’s licensed producers have also voiced objections to Ottawa’s proposal, which would add an excise tax of  $1 per gram of cannabis or 10 per cent of the final retail price, whichever is higher.

John Fowler, chief executive officer of Ontario-based Supreme Pharmaceuticals, told Leafly that Ottawa’s proposal to add roughly one dollar per gram to sales of cannabis for recreational use is “reasonable,” but believes taxing medical cannabis in the same way “is not in line with the taxation of medicine in Canada and presents a risk that certain patients may not have access to cannabis for financial reasons.”

Colette Rivet , executive director of the Cannabis Canada Association, which represents licensed cannabis producers across the country, believes medical cannabis should be exempt from excise tax and sales tax just as other prescription drugs are. She told Leafly she would like the federal and provincial governments to “ensure medical cannabis is affordable.”

RELATED STORY

Leafly List: The Top Cannabis Dispensaries in British Columbia, Fall 2017

“We support Ottawa’s efforts to bring forth a reasonable tax structure for the sale of adult-use recreational cannabis,” added Jordan Rodness, marketing manager at Emblem Cannabis, which is also based in Ontario, “but we strongly believe that medical cannabis should be zero-rated. We support groups like CFAMM that are championing this message, and will continue to do so.”

CFAMM has already mobilized in the fight against the proposal. It created an online petition that drew more than 600 signatures in just one day. “The overwhelming response from patients speaks volumes about their concerns over the government proposal,” said Zaid.

His organization is also bringing together several stakeholders—what he describes as a “coalition of voices”—to approach the government. Ottawa is holding consultations on the proposal and has asked interested individuals and organizations to submit written comments by December 7. CFAMM also plans to reach out to individual lawmakers.

Zaid’s conviction is unwavering. “This proposal feels totally wrong and unfair to medical cannabis patients,” he told Leafly. “Canadians have a fundamental right to have access to affordable medicine.”


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Recipe: Cannabis-Infused Nanaimo Bars

Named after Nanaimo, British Columbia, this classic Canadian dessert is a fan favorite in the north. Nanaimo bars are simple to make and require no baking, meaning you can get elevated without any extra steps. Mix in a bit of cannabis tincture and you’ll forget pot brownies are even a thing.

RELATED STORY

Dispensaries With the Largest Product Selections in Every Major Market

Cannabis-Infused Nanaimo Bars

(Courtesy of Tilray)

Start to Finish: 4 hours 20 minutes (active: 20 minutes)

Yields: 12 squares

Approximate Dosage: 8mg THC per square*

Ingredients

Base

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 5 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 ½ cups Graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 cup shredded coconut (unsweetened)
  • ⅔ cup finely chopped almonds
  • 1 egg

Filling

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 100mg of cannabis tincture*

Topping

  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 1 ⅔ cups dark chocolate, chopped

RELATED STORY

Cannabis Tinctures 101: What Are They, How to Make Them, and How to Use Them

Directions

  1. To create the base, heat butter, cocoa, and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat until melted and smooth. Stir in crumbs, coconut, almonds, and egg.
  2. Using a rubber spatula, transfer to a parchment paper-lined 8″x 8″ baking pan and press evenly into bottom. Set aside. 
  3. To create the filling, use an electric hand mixer to beat butter, confectioners’ sugar, cream, powdered milk, vanilla, and cannabis tincture thoroughly in a bowl on medium speed until smooth and fluffy. Spread over the bottom layer.
  4. For the topping, melt butter and chocolate in a saucepan over medium-low heat.
  5. Spread over filling layer. Chill until set, at least four hours.
  6. Cut into 12 even squares and serve.

This recipe was developed in partnership with Tilray. Tilray and Leafly are both owned by Privateer Holdings. 

*Note: The amount of cannabis tincture specified in this recipe is a very loose suggestion; the actual amount you use should be modified based on the strength of your tincture and the potency you desire. Dosing homemade edibles can be tricky (click here to learn why), so the best way to test for potency is to start with one portion of a serving, wait one to two hours, then make an informed decision on whether to consume more. Always dose carefully and listen to your body, and never drive under the influence of cannabis.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

This Soldier Is Celebrating Veterans Day With Family, Reflection and a Big Coner

Cody Simpson wants fellow veterans to know that medicinal marijuana has changed his life for the better. While serving as a chef in the Canadian military, Simpson was deployed to Afghanistan. The experience left him constantly rattled, ready to snap under the smallest amount of pressure.

‘It helps when veterans talk about cannabis with one another.’

Cody Lindsay, The Wellness Soldier

Upon his return to Canada, he started using cannabis to help with his symptoms. A neighbor reported him to the military police and he was discharged for drug use. In an ironic twist, Simpson was eventually diagnosed with PTSD and now acquires his medicinal cannabis through Veterans Affairs.

He’s now committed to educating other vets about the benefits of medicinal marijuana. As the Wellness Soldier, Simpson authors cookbooks, speaks to veterans groups, and regularly puts on cooking demos at cannabis conventions, all with the goal of educating others on the best way to consume the herb through a healthy diet.

He spoke to Leafly about Remembrance Day (Veteran’s Day in the U.S.) and what veterans should know about using cannabis for their symptoms.

LEAFLY: How are you planning on commemorating Remembrance Day?

CODY LINDSAY: When I lived in Ottawa, I would bring my family to a bed and breakfast the night before Remembrance Day. There is this company called B&B for Vets that gives vets free stays at different B&B’s around the country. After a night of being away and relaxing we would go down to Parliament Hill in Ottawa.

Now that we are living in Victoria BC, we are continuing that tradition of going out for the night even though the B&B for Vets isn’t in Victoria. We’ll go to a B&B, relax, rejuvenate, and I’ll prepare myself for Remembrance Day. We will go to the Esquimalt cenotaph and watch the ceremonies there. Then I’ll bring the kids for a tour of the base and show them a little about my military career

After all that craziness is over, I’ll have a moment of silence by myself and smoke a big coner.

What is the biggest hindrance to military veterans getting honest information about medicinal cannabis?

Decades of prohibition. Years of fear-driven tactics. Thoughts that if you even mention the word ‘cannabis’ you could be kicked out of the military and lose your career.

Thankfully, veterans are starting to believe themselves and each other. It helps when we talk about cannabis with one another. Veterans are coming together more, helping each other more, talking more, setting up Facebook pages and websites, setting up not-for-profit organizations to do just that—help other vets see the benefits of cannabis.

We also tell the doctors here in Canada that cannabis is working and giving vets their life back. Often we are met with ‘Oh, that’s anecdotal!’

Well, to me, if someone tells me something about themselves, I tend to trust them. It’s their own body!

If you could instill one fact about cannabis into the brain of every veteran in North America, what would it be?

There’s nothing to be afraid of!

Cannabis does not interfere with other medications. The ‘stoner-isms’ of cannabis are what the medical properties are. With more and more research being done on cannabinoids, we see a lot of promise for naturally derived medications such as cannabis.

For more information about cannabis and cannabis recipes visit thewellnesssoldier.com


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

The Canadian Cannabis Act’s Final Hurdle: A Contentious Senate

Canadian cannabis producers, investors, and advocates are celebrating the impending legalization of recreational marijuana—but don’t be too quick to uncork the champagne. For the Cannabis Act to become law, it must pass the Senate—and there’s a chance that might not happen in time to meet the July 1st deadline set by the federal government.

“There are too many unanswered questions, too many issues that have not been addressed, for us to rush into what is an historic change.”

Manitoba Premier Brian Palliste

At least one senator, André Pratte, has expressed the same concerns about Bill C-45 that have been voiced by other members of parliament, including the proposed age limit (18 years) being too low and police not yet being properly prepared to enforce the new law.

“It’s not a court that imposed that deadline [of July 2018]. It’s the government that set that deadline,” Pratte, who is not affiliated with any party, told the CBC. “We have to take it into account but we also have to do our job seriously and that’s what we’ll do.”

RELATED STORY

Leafly List: The Top Cannabis Dispensaries in British Columbia, Fall 2017

Tony Dean, an independent senator who is sponsoring the bill in the upper chamber, said he is prepared to dig in his heels to ensure the bill is passed in time to meet the deadline set by Prime Minister Trudeau’s government.

“We have to take (the July 1 deadline) into account but we also have to do our job seriously.”

Senator André Pratte

In an interview with Leafly, Dean said the concerns that Pratte cited are not new and were carefully considered by the Cannabis Legalization Task Force before it submitted its recommendations to the Trudeau government last year.

Dean doesn’t agree that the legal age proposed by the task force and included in the bill is too low. “The reality is that the higher in age you go, the further away you get from the largest group of cannabis users in this country,” he said.

Dean said the bill should be passed as soon as possible because the black market is thriving, which puts many young Canadians at risk of health and legal problems.

RELATED STORY

How Are Canadian Patients Using Medical Cannabis?

“The Prime Minister took steps to legalize cannabis because it’s a very serious problem in this country. We have to keep that in mind and I think a lot of people aren’t. This [bill] is about recognizing of harm of cannabis medically and criminally. [Prohibition] hasn’t worked and recreational cannabis is ubiquitous,” he said. “Legislators have looked the other way. Now someone has decided to tackle the problem.”

“The higher in age you go, the further you get from the largest group of cannabis users in this country.”

Senator Tony Dean, on setting minimum-age restrictions

Dean said he has been preparing for the bill’s arrival in the upper chamber for months. “My staff and I have been doing a lot of research on the various issues and I have shared that information with my fellow senators. To take that step before the arrival of the bill is unusual in the senate,” he said, adding that he would like the senate to set a calendar for the debate so the bill doesn’t languish in the upper chamber indefinitely.

His words are echoed by Colette Rivet, executive director of Cannabis Canada Association, which represents the majority of licensed producers of marijuana for medical purposes. “We think time is of the essence when it comes to legalization, especially if we want to remove the black market from the equation,” she told Leafly.

Senator Dean would like the senate to set a calendar for the debate so the bill doesn’t languish in the upper chamber indefinitely.

“In terms of age concerns, it’s a balancing act,” she added. “You have to consider health concerns and all the other issues experts have raised but you also have to take into consideration that young people are already consuming cannabis. They’re getting it on the black market. It would be better for them to consume cannabis that is clean and comes from reliable sources.”

But senator Pratte is not swayed by those arguments, at least not yet, and his reservations are shared by other lawmakers. One of the most vocal proponents of a delay, Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister, put it succinctly at a premiers meeting four months ago: “There are too many unanswered questions, too many issues that have not been addressed for us to rush into what is an historic change.”


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Hybrid Models and Lock-Boxes: Manitoba and New Brunswick Reveal Cannabis-Plan Details

The Manitoba government today introduced a hybrid model for the distribution and sale of recreational cannabis. Once legalization hits next July, the province will regulate the supply of the cannabis but private retailers will sell it.

Manitoba government will regulate the supply of cannabis but private retailers will sell it.

When he unveiled the plan at an afternoon press conference, Premier Brian Pallister stated that the goal was to take over 50% of the recreational cannabis market within a year of legalization and, ultimately, to wipe out the black market. When asked if that was feasible, Pallister responded by referring to Winnipeg’s NHL franchise: “The Jets would like to win every game but they don’t.”

Pallister, who has openly criticized the date Ottawa has set for legalization, repeated his belief that the legalization timeline is “too tight. A year from now we might be saying it would have been better if we had taken a bit longer.”

RELATED STORY

Leafly List: The Top Cannabis Dispensaries in British Columbia, Fall 2017

Pallister also dismissed as “silly” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s proposal to split tax revenue from the sale of cannabis evenly between the provinces and the federal government, noting that the provinces alone will be required to foot the bill for many costs related to the legalization of cannabis.

Key points of Manitoba’s announcement:

  • The Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries Corporation, a government agency that regulates gambling and the distribution and sale of alcoholic beverages, will secure the cannabis supply and keep track of it but private retailers will sell it.
  • The province is now accepting applications from private retailers hoping to open one or more outlets to sell recreational cannabis. Bids must be submitted by Dec. 22.
  • Successful applicants will have to meet a “wide array” of government stipulations regarding matters such as distance from schools, insurance, and staffing.
  • The province is looking for retailers who will be able to expand as the need arises.

Ideally, 90% of Manitoba residents will be within a 30-minute drive of a retail cannabis outlet.

  • The province didn’t reveal how many retail outlets will open but did say that, ideally, 90% of Manitoba residents would be within a 30-minute drive of an outlet.
  • The province is open to online sales of recreational cannabis because officials would like to see a “broad range of coverage and availability.”
  • Cannabis and alcohol won’t be sold at the same outlets
  • The province didn’t reveal the age at which individuals will be able to purchase cannabis legally. The drinking age is 18.

RELATED STORY

The Best Dab Rig for You

New Brunswick Offers Details of Its ‘Cannabis Control Act”

Earlier in the day, New Brunswick introduced proposed legislation that touches on issues such as the legal age for consumption of recreational cannabis, possession, and impaired driving.

In New Brunswick, cannabis in private homes must be stored in a locked container or locked room.

“I think just the fact [the laws are] there, it creates awareness and just awareness in itself is a good step forward in order for people to understand we are serious about keeping children and youth safe and having those products out of their hands,” the province’s health minister, Benoit Bourque, said.

Key points of New Brunswick’s newly unveiled Cannabis Control Act:

  • A person must be at least 19 years old to purchase cannabis
  • Cannabis cannot be consumed in public places
  • In private homes, cannabis must be stored in a locked container or locked room
  • Individuals who grow their own cannabis on private property, whether indoors or outdoors, will be required to secure their plants
  • The Motor Vehicle Act will be amended to include immediate short-term roadside suspensions for drivers found to be drug impaired.
  • Police will conduct a three-step test to detect drug-impaired driving. It includes checking saliva for THC — a process that has been widely criticized as unreliable.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

New Brunswick Launches Canada’s First Cannabis Cultivation Course

A community college in New Brunswick will be the first in Canada to offer cannabis production classes to prospective students. The 12-week cannabis cultivation technician program through Collège Communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick (CCNB) will start on November 27.

Open to 25 students, the class will focus on entry-level production skills like plant biology, the cannabis life cycle, feeding, cutting, and hydration.

Open to 25 students, the class will focus on entry-level production skills like plant biology, the cannabis life cycle, feeding, cutting, and hydration.

“[The course] will provide the basic understanding to get into the business at a production level and work within a controlled environment,” says Michel Doucet, executive director of contract training and customized learning for the CCNB. “They’ll have a good understanding of the plant and its cycle, and the environmental issues around it.”

While students will have site visits to production facilities, most of the learning will happen in class. New Brunswick-based licensed producer Organigram, one of two LPs in the region, is on board to provide a one-week practicum in its facilities.

RELATED STORY

New Brunswick Announces $90 Million Cannabis Buy

“What makes this unique is that industry is coming to the table and we’re using their techniques and the training results in real jobs,” says Doucet. “The training cycle will continue in the industry but at least this program will provide basic level of understanding, so when you’re hired, you’ve able to hit the ground running.”

The course has been in development since 2015, when the province started attracting licensed producers to set up operations in the region. The New Brunswick government is investing more than $70,000 for the first batch of students to attend the program.

RELATED STORY

Leafly List: The Top Cannabis Dispensaries in British Columbia, Fall 2017

Doucet says since the course is so new, it will continue to be modified and evaluated. The curriculum was developed with industry officials, after analyzing what holes they’ll need to fill once business is up and running. The college also consulted with Quebec-based Dr. Richard Cote, who specializes in horticultural and biophysics.

The curriculum was developed with industry officials, after analyzing what holes they’ll need to fill once business is up and running.

CCNB will develop the cultivation program as part of their core curriculum, which will be offered exclusively in French. The upcoming 12-week program, which will take place on the college’s Dieppe campus, will be taught in English.

Doucet says the medicinal marijuana industry is expected to bring more than 500 jobs to the region in the next few years. That number will grow if other licensed producers set up shop in the province. While Organigram is in full operation, growers Zenabis only recently became licensed. The college intends to establish a partnership with the facility once it’s in full production.

Students applying for the program must be of legal age to work in the province, have a high school diploma and no criminal record. It’s not unusual for some post-secondary programs, like education or psychology, to require a criminal background check, and Doucet says the stipulation for the cultivation program is in line with Health Canada’s guidelines.

RELATED STORY

Which Universities in Canada Consume the Most Cannabis?

“To get a job, each student will have to follow the rules and regulations of the industry,” says Doucet. “It’s a regulation issue with Health Canada.”

So far, the college has received over 200 applications for the program from across the country and Europe. Doucet says the course is almost full, and most of the students chosen will be from New Brunswick.

“The growth of the medical marijuana industry has been identified as a priority by the New Brunswick government,” says Doucet. “We’re trying to play our role as a training provider, to support the province in achieving their goals by developing customized training that will put people to work quickly and efficiently. “


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.

Licensed Producers in Ontario Concerned Over Polluted Lands

Licensed cannabis producers in Hamilton, Ontario are at loggerheads with city officials over where their grow-ops will go.

The tussle began last month, after Liberal MPP for Hamilton Ted McMeekin and several city council members suggested restricting where medicinal cannabis growers will be able to set up greenhouses once the product is legalized.

“Any contaminants or pollutants could cause devastating crop failure, and we could not give this to our patients whatsoever.”

Ian Wilms, vice-chair of Green Organic Dutchman

Growers are critical of city council’s suggestion that they build on old industrial land instead of prime farm land, claiming the air pollution would kill their product. Representatives from Beleave and Green Organic Dutchman told the CBC that such a move would be “catastrophic.”

Ian Wilms, vice-chair of Green Organic Dutchman, told the city council’s planning committee that “any contaminants or pollutants could cause devastating crop failure, and we could not give this to our patients whatsoever.” He says as per the company’s Health Canada license, any product that is compromised must be destroyed.

RELATED STORY

Ontario Tussles Over Grow-Ops on ‘Agricultural Land’

Wilms stressed that growers want to be in rural areas where air quality is better. Nevertheless, city councillor Lloyd Ferguson has suggested a limit on grow-ops in rural areas, stricter regulation, and a priority for growing food over cannabis.

Councilor Matthew Green was skeptical of the air-quality claim, noting that grow-ops are indoors and can create environments that keep out air pollution.

Councilor Matthew Green was skeptical of the air-quality claim, noting that grow-ops are indoors and can create environments that keep out air pollution.

There are currently four licensed medicinal marijuana corporations in the Hamilton area, but that number is likely to spike once cannabis is legalized in July 2018.

“If we planned properly, we could create an industry here—a green economy” on industrial land, said Councilor Green, noting that both Beleave’s and Green Organic Dutchman’s planned Hamilton expansions are that of “multinational corporations” rather than a “family farm.”

Green Organic Dutchman wants an additional 150,000 square feet to its current 7,000 square foot facility, while Beleave wants to expand its 14,000 square foot operation by an additional 80,000 square feet.

RELATED STORY

Leafly List: The Top Cannabis Dispensaries in British Columbia, Fall 2017

Both companies said they would find other spaces to develop if the restrictions are imposed by the city council.

Bill Panagiotakopoulos of Beleave told Global News that the Ontario municipalities Welland, Burlington, and Caledonia have already approached them for business.

Last month, McMeekin told the Hamilton Spectator he wants industrial-sized marijuana greenhouses to stay away from land that’s fit for cultivation.

“You shouldn’t be building greenhouses on class 1 agriculture land,” said McMeekin. “You should do it on class 3 or 4 land where you can’t grow anything.”

He suggests licensed growers look to northern Ontario to build their businesses, since the region could use the jobs and economic growth.


Thank you for visiting MDMMCC.com, the premier Medical Marijuana Certification Center in Maryland. Our Mission at the Maryland Medical Marijuana Certification Clinics (MDMMCC) is to provide the certification necessary for qualified patients to obtain Medical Marijuana in compliance with the Maryland Medical Marijuana Laws in the State of Maryland.  MDMMCC will have offices open throughout Maryland.