Don’t expect legal pot stores by Canada Day 2018, industry expert says

Recreational marijuana may be legal by Canada Day 2018, but Canadians will probably be buying it online, says Ottawa lawyer Trina Fraser.

She and some others in the cannabis industry doubt whether legal pot stores will be open in most provinces by the federal government’s target date for legalization.

There is a massive amount of regulatory work to be done, says Fraser, who advises clients on obtaining licenses to grow marijuana.

Continue reading: http://www.ottawasun.com/2017/06/15/dont-expect-legal-pot-stores-by-canada-day-2018-industry-expert-says

John Tory says it’s time for another round of pot shop crackdowns

John Tory says it’s time for another round of pot shop crackdowns

Toronto mayor John Tory says he’d like to see further police crackdowns on the growing number of marijuana dispensaries sprouting up around the city.

The last round of raids were conducted in March, when Toronto Police searched stores owned by cannabis activists Marc and Jodie Emery. They were among five people arrested as part of what police called Project Gator.

In May 2016, Toronto Police conducted a much larger operation, raiding 43 storefronts and arresting more than 90 people in the process.

Continue reading: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/toy-pot-crackdown-1.4161712

Legalizing cannabis could help reduce opioid use, experts say

Legalizing cannabis could help reduce opioid use, experts say

Leading medical experts say legalizing cannabis may offer new hope to one day reduce the use of opioids — powerful drugs frequently prescribed for the treatment of pain.

Dr. Mark Ware, a globally recognized researcher and the vice-chair of the federal government’s task force on legalizing marijuana, says a legal framework for cannabis will help to facilitate further research.

Continue reading: http://www.torontosun.com/2017/06/14/legalizing-cannabis-could-help-reduce-opioid-use-experts-say

Kathleen Wynne still weighing options for marijuana sales

Kathleen Wynne still weighing options for marijuana sales

After a flurry of activity this spring — expanding rent control, announcing a $15 minimum wage, cutting hydro bills, bringing Pharmacare to children and young adults — what’s next for Premier Kathleen Wynne?

I put that question and a few others to Wynne in an interview on the grounds of Queen’s Park on Tuesday, with the legislature wrapped up for its summer break and the election less than one year away.

Continue reading: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/kathleen-wynne-interview-1.4158452

Couche-Tard keen on selling cannabis in convenience stores in Quebec

Couche-Tard keen on selling cannabis in convenience stores in Quebec

If Quebec’s biggest chain of convenience stores has its way, customers will eventually be able to buy cannabis along with their chips, beer and cigarettes.

Alimentation Couche-Tard has hired a lobbyist to work on ensuring it is involved in the cannabis-distribution system Quebec will eventually set up.

The province’s official registry of lobbyists shows Marie-Eve Bedard has been authorized to work on behalf of Couche-Tard and can continue doing so until next May.

Continue reading: https://www.thestar.com/business/2017/06/13/couche-tard-keen-on-selling-cannabis-in-quebec-convenience-stores.html

Startup seeks to modernize grow ops as Canada set to legalize pot

Startup seeks to modernize grow ops as Canada set to legalize pot

Question: When is a datacentre not a datacentre?

Answer: When it’s growing pot.

Smart datacentre managers use technology to regulate power consumption and productivity. Paolo Pincente, CEO of Grow Ratio, is basing his business on the fact that cannabis grow-ops work the same way.

Pincente comes from an IT background, having sold his managed IT services business pNetworks in 2015. Now, he wants to bring the same efficiencies found in high-performance datacentres into licensed grow-ops.

Continue reading: http://www.itworldcanada.com/article/startup-seeks-to-modernize-grow-ops-as-canada-set-to-legalize-pot/393771

Board of Health calls on feds to decriminalize pot possession immediately

Board of Health calls on feds to decriminalize pot possession immediately

Toronto’s Board of Health is calling on the federal government to decriminalize pot possession immediately as part has of a package of recommendations it adopted unanimously on the looming legalization of marijuana.

The “fact it is still criminal is criminal,” board member and Councillor Paula Fletcher said during Monday’s Board of Health meeting.

Fletcher noted illegal pot dispensaries continue to operate in the city, while “some of my residents are being charged with possession and trafficking for hand-to-hand sales of marijuana. It does not seem fair at all.”

Continue reading: https://www.thestar.com/news/city_hall/2017/06/12/board-of-health-calls-on-feds-to-decriminalize-pot-possession-immediately.html

After pot is legal: Doctors urge province not to forget marijuana can do harm

After pot is legal: Doctors urge province not to forget marijuana can do harm

New Brunswick doctors say only a Crown corporation with strict monopoly control should be allowed to sell recreational marijuana in the province.

Whether NB Liquor or some other corporation takes charge of sales, the retail marijuana business should not be subject to profit targets or take place alongside the sale of alcohol or tobacco, the New Brunswick Medical Society says.

Continue reading: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/pot-new-brunswick-legal-1.4156321

CEO’s plan for Canada’s pot edibles market is heady stuff: Wells

CEO’s plan for Canada’s pot edibles market is heady stuff: Wells

It’s been three years since New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd consumed an undocumented amount of a cannabis-infused candy bar and tumbled down a psychotropic rabbit hole.

“For an hour, I felt nothing,” Dowd wrote in June 2014. “But then I felt a scary shudder go through my body and brain. I barely made it from the desk to the bed, where I lay curled up in a hallucinatory state for the next eight hours.”

She was thirsty, but could not move. She was panting and paranoid.

The column launched the predictable round of mockery on social media, commentators bemused by the naiveté of the Gray Lady columnist.

Pot legislation does not fail Canada’s youth. A criminal record does

Pot legislation does not fail Canada’s youth. A criminal record does

On May 29, the Canadian Medical Association Journal released an editorial criticizing the government’s approach to the protection of youth in the proposed Cannabis Act. The legislation, which was introduced in April, will create a legal regulated market for adult access to non-medical cannabis in Canada. The editorial took issue with the Act’s mandated minimum age of at least 18. It argued that the minimum age should be raised to 21 and use restricted until age 25, concluding with: “If Parliament truly cares about the public health and safety of Canadians, especially our youth, this bill will not pass.”

Continue reading: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/pot-legislation-does-not-fail-canadas-youth-a-criminal-record-does/article35268868/

Smoking weed to relax? Don’t overdo it, study says

Nearly 40% of people who use marijuana say they do so primarily to help them relax. New research from the University of Illinois at Chicago suggests that many of those folks may be overdoing it.

As it turns out, there hasn’t actually been a whole lot of research done on the stress-mitigating effects of pot, according to Emma Childs, Joseph Lutz and Harriet de Wit of UIC. So they conducted a randomized, double-blind lab experiment involving 42 test subjects to see how different doses of THC – pot’s main chemical ingredient – affected the subjects’ responses to stressful situations.

Continue reading: http://www.torontosun.com/2017/06/09/smoking-weed-to-relax-dont-overdo-it-study-says

Decriminalize cannabis before it is legalized: Editorial

Decriminalize cannabis before it is legalized: Editorial

Pot smokers are not known for getting things done in a hurry, but legislators seeking to revamp our marijuana laws shouldn’t follow their lead.

In fact the federal government should hurry up and decriminalize possession of recreational marijuana immediately.

The Liberal government plans to legalize, regulate and restrict cannabis by July 2018. The promise was part of the election platform that propelled the party to a majority government.

Continue reading: https://www.thestar.com/opinion/columnists/2017/06/08/decriminalize-immediately.html

Canadian cannabis companies face dearth of female directors

Canadian cannabis companies face dearth of female directors

Since co-founding the Green Organic Dutchman, a medical cannabis producer based in Ancaster, Ont., Jeanette VanderMarel says she has often found herself the only woman in a room full of men.

“There seems to be, at times, a bit of condescension,” says VanderMarel, a former nurse who delved into the medical marijuana sector after losing her daughter in 2003 to Dravet syndrome, or uncontrollable seizure disorder.

Continue reading: https://www.thestar.com/business/2017/06/07/canadian-cannabis-companies-face-dearth-of-female-directors.html

Legalized pot and the hypocrisy of laying possession charges: Harper

Legalized pot and the hypocrisy of laying possession charges: Harper

It’s long been apparent that the Liberal legalization of marijuana in this country is not going to provide the mellow buzz the government had sought.

We’re more than a year out from promised legislation, but there’s smoke on the horizon.

The Canadian Medical Association has condemned the legal age of 18 being set by the federal Liberals, citing data that shows early marijuana use leads to everything from depression and anxiety to a lifetime dependency rate of 17 per cent for those who start smoking as teenagers. That’s almost double the rate of those who begin use after their brains mature at age 25.

Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health calls for immediate decriminalization of recreational pot

Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health calls for immediate decriminalization of recreational pot

Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health says the federal government should immediately decriminalize recreational pot possession in advance of upcoming legislation to legalize and regulate recreational cannabis.

“A significant number of young Canadians will continue to obtain criminal charges before cannabis is legalized,” Dr. Eileen de Villa warns in the report, which will be reviewed by Toronto’s Board of Health on Monday.

Continue reading: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/toronto-s-medical-officer-of-health-calls-for-immediate-decriminalization-of-recreational-pot-1.4147657

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