As of right now, Canada is on track to legalize the sale of edibles, extracts, and topicals come October 17th, which will bring a welcome change to how we access cannabis. By the sound of things, the new law will give rise to a total industry reset.
For one thing, the ‘second wave of legal pot’ is forecasted to be worth over $4.1 billion in Canada by 2022, according to marijuana market research company The Arcview Group, so these new regulations obviously open up a new world for cannabis, one with more possibility and opportunity. The larger scope also creates ties to the food and drink industries, so we can expect some collaborations to push us forward into radical new territories.
Long gone will be the days of the pot brownie being the most iconic representative of edibles. Crowns Agency CEO Rebecca Brown said, “this is game on from a brand perspective.”
So this fall, edibles will be legal, creativity will be free to flow, and legal retail stores and sales outlets will be in (greater) abundance. Will October herald a pot panacea? Who knows – it sounds pretty game on to us though. A lot more ‘game on’ than the first wave of legalization back in October 2018, at least.
What exactly do we know about the second wave of legalization at this point? Right now, edibles are legal to eat, but not to buy, in Canada. Meaning, you can buy your bud (in the form of dried or fresh flower, oils or capsules) either online or at one of the government operated or private licensed stores depending on your province and make whatever you want in your kitchen. What you can’t do is buy or sell your pot-infused treats. This new law will make it legal to buy, sell, and consume THC and CBD infused products from any number of these outlets. So if you’re not into the idea of smoking, but you want to eat your medicine, there’ll be interesting options for you, too.
The new federal edible pot regulations set forth by Health Canada state that any single serving consumable must be limited to 10 milligrams of THC (the psychoactive part of the plant, and, 10 milligrams is a very small amount), and each serving must be individually wrapped. This rule is stricter than Colorado, Washington and California, where multiple servings can come in a package. Serving size dosage amounts are comparable.
These proposed rules are an attempt to address one of the issues with edibles in states like Colorado, where larger portion sizes once made it easier for people to accidentally over-consume. So, on one hand, by expanding the products that are legally available, the new items should (ideally) give cannabis companies some kind of a leg up over black market competition. Though: Are the laws too strict to keep consumers in the legal market? Time will tell.
Apart from that, Canadian edibles can’t contain alcohol, can have only a small amount of caffeine, and can’t in any way appear appealing to youth (so, don’t expect any magical-looking candies). Concoct whatever delightful goodies you want, though.
Until the final regulations are published in 5 months, we won’t know exactly what we’ll be able to get our hands on, but the Ontario Cannabis Store has shared that it ‘seeks to add as many as 17 new product types to its sales catalogue’ when the items become legal in Canada, according to BNN Bloomberg:
- Concentrates: Cartridges, rosin (a solventless concentrate made with heat and pressure), resin, hash, wax, kief (a dry powder) and shatter (a butane hash oil)
- Beverages: Hot, cold and de-alcoholized drinks, all in single servings
- Edibles: Chocolate, soft and hard candies and baked goods
- Topicals: Lotions, creams and bath products
Trend-wise, beverages in particular are anticipated to be a huge hit in Canada, with rumblings of Molson Coors, Budweiser, and Corona Beer getting ready to launch infused drink lines. Also, other major brands like Oreo and Carl’s Jr are planning to add cannabis to their ingredients list. So, we can all expect an array of new flavours and experiences becoming very accessible soon.
What are you most looking forward to with this new wave of legal pot?