It’s (Almost) Time to Talk Edibles
The federal government has said edibles containing cannabis and cannabis concentrates would be legal on or before Oct. 17, 2019. “Or before,” and has many LPs and consumers on the edge of their seats, awaiting the legalization around this segment of cannabis products. Last week MMJ Business Journal announced that the first draft of regulations for edibles is said to be coming out before the holidays.
Lisa Campbell, CEO of Toronto-based Lifford Cannabis Solutions explained in the article how “the entire cannabis industry is eagerly awaiting Health Canada’s proposed regulations for edibles. Many questions still remain about what categories of edibles will be approved, but beverages seem to be a preferred category as they are shelf stable and provincial distributors are already familiar with distribution.”
Canopy Growth CEO Bruce Linton spoke last week with CBC about the importance of being competitive and prepared in this emerging sector. "[Edibles] are the products that the black market has been really good at marketing and selling," he said. "As a specific goal of driving out the black market, these products are really important to bring online."
Chuck Rifici, the chairman and CEO of Auxly Cannabis Group, said his 18-month-old company is jumping right into developing edible products. He is referring to this as the “second wave of legalization.”
A team of BC Scientist at the University of British Columbia Oakanagan is working on cannabis drinks in a study with Pac Rim Brands. The study aims to research and develop cannabis-based beverages that incorporate cannabis ingredients in a way that is safe, shelf-stable and effective. Professor Susan Murch, an expert in medicinal plants who is involved in the project explains “We are going to see a whole new range of products on the shelf in Canada but we don’t know yet whether products will have a shelf life like milk, or something more like beer.”
Canadian Cannabis Award Winners were Announced
Last week some of the biggest names in cannabis graced the red carpet at the Lift + Co Awards at the Carlu in Toronto.
Awards were given out in categories that ranged from Cannabis Crusader to balanced oil. With more than 17,000 unique public votes in the first year of legalization, it was one for the books. Some highlights include 7Acres winning Brand of the Year, Rosy Mondin, CEO of Quadron Cannatech Corporation being recognized as the first Women in Weed Trailblazer, and Hydropothecary winning Cannabis Product of the Year with their Elixir CBD Peppermint oil. See the full award list on Newswire.
First Outdoor Grow Proposed
Ontario-based 48North is laying the groundwork for what would be Canada’s first large-scale outdoor marijuana crop under the Cannabis Act this spring, pending required permits from Health Canada. “We’re using natural sunlight, growing organically, so no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides, composting any root mass we’re not using,” 48 North’s co-CEO Jeannette VanderMarel said. Could this pose risk of robbery? CEO Bruce Linton of Canopy Growth famously expressed concern that “teenagers armed with drones could steal cannabis that is not grown within a greenhouse or building.”
“Our security system would detect anything coming in from above,” VanderMarel said. “With current technology and with our use of trellis netting, as well as our security system detection, I have no concerns about this.”
Legal Hemp in the US
There is a new potential cash cow making headlines in the US, and what it produces is one of the buzziest words around. That’s right, Hemp derived CBD could make American Farmers Rich again… so-to-speak. U.S. Congress is on the verge of fully legalizing hemp under a new farm-bill agreement that was announced last week.
In an interview with Bloomberg news, a tobacco farmer from North Carolina farm, explained why he pulled out his tobacco crops and now plants 1,380 acres of cannabis. “We want the tobacco belt to become the hemp belt,’’ Gator Williams said. After nearly losing his farm when he couldn’t squeeze enough profit from his row crops, he sees limitless potential in cannabis. “We use everything from the roots all the way down to the base fibers. The bark on it. There’s nothing wasted from this plant.”
Studies on Seniors
Tilray has announced an Ontario study that will impact how seniors’ homes approach cannabis. The study is being led by Sarnia-based cannabis specialist Dr. Blake Pearson, who specializes in cannabinoid therapy for seniors, including those living in long-term care facilities.
Pearson says cannabis is not for everyone but estimates that 60 to 70 percent of patients who try medical cannabis under his care see some type of improvement.
“Oftentimes, I’m able to treat a geriatric patient with cannabis oil and reduce potentially two to three of their other medications as a result, because it’s multimodal,” Pearson says.
“So we can treat pain, anxiety, sleep with one thing, as opposed to three or four different medications.”
Interest in cannabis among older people is high but there are lots of questions, says Candace Chartier, CEO of the Ontario Long Term Care Association. Reducing medications could not only improve the quality of life for the patient but the “quality of workplace for the staff” at long-term care facilities, says Chartier. “That could potentially reduce the medication administration time and could almost cut it in half,” she notes.