Marijuana Politics

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Mon
19
Nov

5 reasons Canada is facing a marijuana shortage

The marijuana industry has delivered one milestone after another in 2018.

The highlight, of course, was the legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada on Oct. 17, 2018, which ended nine decades of adult-use prohibition. However, we also witnessed two more U.S. states legalize medical pot, which went along with Michigan becoming the 10th state to OK recreational weed use. Add in pot stock uplistings, the first cannabis-derived drug being approved in the U.S., and Tilray becoming the first pot stock to IPO on a reputable U.S. exchange, and you have the makings of a groundbreaking year.

Fri
16
Nov

Early data suggests no spike in pot-impaired driving after legalization: police

Canadian police have not seen a spike in cannabis-impaired driving one month since legalization, but there needs to be more awareness of laws around storing marijuana in vehicles and passengers smoking weed, law enforcement officials say.

The Canadian Press canvassed police forces and provincial and territorial Crowns across the country and while some said it was too early to provide data, others said initial numbers and anecdotal impressions suggest stoned driving isn't on the rise.

"Even before the legislation we were catching a lot of high school kids because marijuana has seemed to be kind of mainstream forever," said Sgt. Joe Cantelo of the Kennebecasis Regional Police Force in New Brunswick.

Fri
16
Nov

Unhappy with new rules for cannabis stores, some councillors want Hamilton to opt out

Several city councillors say they want to opt out of having private cannabis stores in Hamilton, especially given how close they can be to schools.

At least four of Hamilton's 15 councillors say they want more control over where pot stores go and are unhappy with key parts of the new provincial guidelines released Wednesday. Under the new guidelines, the shops can't be within 150 metres of schools. Councillors wanted 300 metres.

Unless those changes are made, they say, they don't want private shops in Hamilton at all.

"I'm appalled by the ridiculous minimum of only 150 metres (approximately 450 feet) that a recreational store has to be away from a nearby school with lots of children," said Tom Jackson of Ward 6. The planned setback, he said, is "shameful."

Fri
16
Nov

Canadian marijuana shortages could go on for years

When Canadian provinces across the country came up against shortages of marijuana in the first month of legalization, it was frustrating. But even more frustrating is that this current lack could last for years.

According to Khurram Malik, CEO of Biome Grow Inc., the shortage is not only due to delays in licensing, but is also partly caused by the strict regulations on the country’s 132 licensed producers and enforced by Health Canada. The time needed by cannabis businesses to come up with a product that’s not only up to par, but is also compliant is standing in the way as well. These are problems projected to persist into the foreseeable future.

Fri
16
Nov

Why is Canada running out of marijuana?

In the early days of legalisation, James Burns was confident his company had enough product on the shelves of its five new cannabis retail stores, even though they only received half of their order from the provincial supplier.

Now, he has had staff refreshing the government supply website in the early hours to snap up scarce new stock as soon as it's available, and is considering restricting store hours.

"While there was product to order we were very comfortably getting a large amount of it," says Burns, the CEO of Alcanna, a company that owns a chain of private liquor stores in Canada and the US and, now, cannabis stores in the province of Alberta.

Thu
15
Nov

Canadians divided over legal age for marijuana, Angus Reid institute poll suggests

Almost a month into Canada's waltz with legal weed, a new poll suggests Canadians are divided when it comes to the age to buy and consume marijuana.

The federal government set the minimum age for recreational cannabis at 18, but left it up to the provinces and territories to decide if it should be higher. At the moment, it's 19 in most provinces and territories, while Alberta and Quebec have set it at 18.

A new survey from the Angus Reid Institute, however, found that while 27 per cent of respondents agree that the minimum age should be 18, a similar number of correspondents (26 per cent) want it to be 21. Some want it even higher than that — 13 per cent said the legal age should be older than 25.

Thu
15
Nov

Clock ticking to make local decisions on allowing pot shops

As municipal councils prepare to wrap up sessions with outgoing representatives and welcome newly-elected members, there are few meeting dates left for cities or townships to hold discussions ahead of the deadline set by the province to decide whether there should be a government marijuana store in their community.

The provincial government has set a deadline of Jan. 22, 2019 for municipalities to opt out of having a local cannabis retail store.

Thus far, only Guelph and North Dumfries have set dates for the issue to come before council. North Dumfries council will debate the issue on Dec. 10 while Guelph has it scheduled it for Dec. 17.

Thu
15
Nov

Expect no quick end to Canada-wide cannabis shortages, producers warn

The supply shortages that have plagued many provinces in the first month of legal cannabis will likely persist for years, industry insiders say.

Provinces including British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Quebec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick have all reported varying degrees of shortages.

Tue
13
Nov

Ontario Cannabis Store delivery times 'back on track,' finance minister says

The Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) is “back on track” according to the province’s finance minister, with legal pot now expected to arrive on doorsteps within one to three business days of the order being placed.

The government-run online retail store has been plagued with problems since its launch on Oct. 17, the day marijuana was legalized in Canada. Some customers experienced long wait times for delivery and others had incorrect orders arrive at the door.

Immediately after the online store opened, it received more than 100,000 orders in 24 hours. Within days, customers were warned that deliveries would be delayed up to five days.

Tue
13
Nov

Cannabis edibles, drinks will mark '2nd wave' of legalization

Now that recreational cannabis is legal in Canada, producers are looking forward to what they're calling the "second wave" of legalization — edibles, drinks and vaping products expected to become legal starting next year. 

Bruce Linton, the founder and co-CEO of Canopy Growth, said new products developed by Tweed — the cannabis brand owned by Canopy and based in Smiths Falls — represent the next big opportunity.

"I think if you're not preparing things two years in advance, you're never ready," he said. 

"Right now, none of the chocolate or gummy bears or beverages can be prepared or sold, but we're doing experiments on how to make them."

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