Ruling that Quebecers can grow pot at home could boost challenge of Manitoba's law

Manitobans who want to grow their own recreational cannabis may now have legal ammunition to use in any future court challenge of the province's home-growing ban.

The Quebec Superior Court struck down that province's ban on home cannabis cultivation on Tuesday. In its decision, the court ruled the provincial ban was unconstitutional because it infringed on the federal government's jurisdiction over criminal matters.


Manitobans may be a step closer to growing marijuana plants

Manitobans may be a step closer to growing their own recreational marijuana plants.

A Quebec court ruled Tuesday a ban on possessing and growing pot plants for personal use is unconstitutional because Quebec's legislation infringed on the jurisdiction of the federal government, which has sole responsibility on criminal matters.

The decision means it's now legal to grow cannabis plants at home in Quebec, and the ruling could open the door for the law to change in Manitoba as well.

Jamie Jurczak is a partner at Taylor McCaffrey in Winnipeg, and has been following legal changes around cannabis legislation.


Biome Grow wins right to sell cannabis in Manitoba

Biome Grow Inc. (“Biome” or the “Company”) (CSE:BIO) (6OTA.F) (OTCQB: BIOIF) is pleased to announce that it has been licensed for the retail sale of cannabis in the province of Manitoba. This announcement comes on the back of recent approvals allowing Biome to distribute cannabis products in Saskatchewan and New Brunswick.

With this announcement, Biome is licensed to distribute cannabis in five provinces: Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick and now Manitoba. Select strains of dried flower and pre-rolls will be supplied to private retailers all across Manitoba from Highland Grow, Biome’s wholly-owned cultivation facility in Antigonish, Nova Scotia.


'At first we all thought are there skunks around here,' neighbours fed up with medical marijuana grow-op

People living on a quiet street in The Maples say they're tired of sharing the neighbourhood with a medical marijuana grow-op.

The house was purchased by a couple two years ago, according to land title documents, but neighbours say no one ever moved in. The owners live in another home on the same street and have only used this house to grow medical marijuana plants.

"They bought this house for a grow-op I guess," neighbour Rogelio Laoag told CBC News.

Laoag and his wife have lived in their home for about 20 years but since their neighbours' home turned into a grow-op in 2017, they haven't been able to enjoy their backyard. They say the smell of cannabis is so strong it makes them feel light-headed.


Winnipeg councillor looking to limit amount of medical pot grown in homes

A Winnipeg city councillor says it's time to move large scale medical marijuana grow ops out of residential neighbourhoods and into industrial areas.

Health Canada says people with a registered certificate to grow medical pot in their homes for personal use can possess up to 150 dried grams or 300 fresh grams.

There can also be up to four registrations in place for production at one location.

Coun. Ross Eadie says he's been receiving complaints about suspected medical grow ops causing odour and noise problems in two neighbourhoods. 

“A person’s right to medical cannabis does not trump people’s right to live comfortably next door,” says Eadie


More legal cannabis needed to break black market: province

Shutting down the marijuana black market will require more legal cannabis and more licensed producers, according to the provincial bureaucrat who works on Manitoba's cannabis strategy.

"Breaking the black market is a key aspect of legalization," said Michael Legary, a senior project manager with Manitoba's priorities and planning secretariat.

"You have to have a legal supply available to do that. And if we do not have legal supply, people will go to the previous channels they were using," he said.

John Arbuthnot, CEO of Delta 9 Cannabis, agrees there is not enough pot to go around. Both he and Legary were panelists at a cannabis industry event Wednesday organized by the Chartered Financial Analyst Society of Winnipeg.


Yeast produces low-cost, high-quality cannabinoids

Before Canadian hemp and cannabis growers have even begun to capitalize on new markets, they could have new and novel competition.

University of California synthetic biologists have engineered brewer’s yeast to produce marijuana’s main ingredients — mind-altering THC and non-psychoactive CBD — as well as novel cannabinoids not found in the plant itself. Feeding only on sugar, the yeast is an easy and cheap way to produce pure cannabinoids that today are costly to extract from the buds of the plants.

“For the consumer, the benefits are high-quality, low-cost CBD and THC: you get exactly what you want from yeast,” said Jay Keasling, a UC Berkeley professor. “It is a safer, more environmentally friendly way to produce cannabinoids.”


Manitoba chooses 7 rural communities for expansion of retail cannabis footprint

The Manitoba government is opening up the retail cannabis market in seven rural communities.

The province will license non-medicinal cannabis stores in Flin Flon, Niverville, Swan River, Virden, Altona, Lac du Bonnet and the rural municipality of Russell Binscarth, CBC News has learned.

The retailers will be chosen randomly from a list of nearly 100 pre-qualified applicants who responded to the province's second call for pot shop proposals last summer. The expansion aims to bring recreational cannabis sales to areas underserved by the initial distribution rollout, following the legalization of marijuana last October.


Tilray buys Manitoba Harvest, eyes CBD food and drink market

Tilray is buying Manitoba Harvest, the world’s largest hemp foods manufacturer, for $317 million from Compass Diversified Holdings, eyeing the growing CBD food and drink market in the U.S.

The acquisition, announced Wednesday, gives Tilray access to the U.S. CBD market — and traditional retail spaces — starting with a line of CBD tinctures, sprays and soft gel caps, expected to launch this summer.

Tilray will issue another $37 million (C$49 million) in shares to Manitoba Harvest based on certain financial milestones in 2019.


Hemp-foods firm Manitoba Harvest sold to cannabis group Tilray

Manitoba Harvest, the Canada-based hemp-foods business, has accepted a takeover offer from Tilray, a local peer producing and distributing cannabis.

Tilray has struck a cash-and-shares deal to pay CAD419m (US$314.6m) for FHF Holdings, the parent company of Manitoba Holdings, which it described as "the world's largest hemp food manufacturer and a leader in the natural foods industry".

Set up in 1998, Manitoba Harvest manufactures and markets hemp-based consumer products sold in more than 16,000 stores in Canada and the US. The company's products include Hemp Yeah granola and Hemp Bliss milk.


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