Consumers Won’t See Cannabis Edibles, Extracts, and Topicals Until Mid-December – LPC
Cannabis edibles, extracts, and topicals became legal in Canada on October 17, 2019. But you won’t be seeing them on the shelves anytime soon. The federal government requires companies to file notice with Health Canada 60 days prior to selling. No reasons were given for the delay. However, it’s likely that Health Canada wants to review products before they hit the market. Health Canada also regulates food and medications available for sale in Canada.
It’s anticipated that demand – and supply – will be high when cannabis edibles, extracts, and topicals hit the market about mid-December. According to this CBC report, the government-run BC Cannabis Stores already has applications from 40 producers. (Please see link below.)
However, many see the restrictions on THC levels in edibles to be restrictive. They cannot include more than 10 milligrams of THC. “A 10-milligram chocolate bar, I’d need to eat four to feel any effect,” said Cody Lindsay, 37, is a former Canadian Forces cook. “Every kind of regulation they put in place seems to me to be way over-the-top ludicrous.”
For Health Canada, it’s safety first when it comes to cannabis edibles, extracts, and topicals. The concern is that bright packaging will attract children. Further, the risk of accidental dosing is real, pushing the need for cannabis edibles safety.
Quebec has indicated that it may ban several products including edibles and cannabis topicals.
Vaping the Other Unknown – LPC
When cannabis edibles, extracts, and topicals do hit the market, vaping will be right there with them. Vape pens use cannabis extracts to produce the cannabis effects of dried cannabis. Companies including the Cronos Group has already stated it plans to enter the cannabis vaping market. Further, Aphria, Aurora, Organigram, and Supreme have contracted vape pen maker PAX Labs to make their cannabis vape cartridges.
However, with the recent reports of vaping illness in the US and Canada, this market could dry up. It’s too early to tell – and in fact health officials on both sides of the border say they don’t understand what is happening. But if governments move to ban vaping or if consumers decide it’s too risky, the cannabis vaping market might not be as lucrative as once thought.
Is it time to celebrate the legalization of cannabis edibles, extracts, and topicals in Canada? It is certainly another milestone in cannabis legalization. But as with the first major milestone a year ago today, the way it plays out on the market remains to be seen.
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