Cannabis consumers have greater access to safer, legal non-medical cannabis now that licensed retailers have additional ways to deliver products directly to customers.
Beginning Friday, July 8, 2022, licensed cannabis retail stores (CRSs) in BC can deliver non-medical cannabis to consumers through common carriers such as Canada Post and delivery-service providers. After a lot of lobbying from groups like the Association of Canadian Cannabis Retailers (ACCRES) and others, this finally evens the playing field with what government has been able to do for many years. This policy builds on the July 2021 authorization for CRS licensees and their employees to deliver non-medical cannabis to consumers.
“Since federal legalization of non-medical cannabis, we have continued to look for ways to support the cannabis industry in our province while providing safe and accessible options for British Columbians,” says Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “Expanding delivery-service options not only builds equality within the market, it also gives consumers one more reason to buy legal instead of illicit.”
The expansion of delivery options will provide more economic opportunities for retailers and supports requests from the private licensed industry to align with the publicly run online retail sales platform operated by the BC Liquor Distribution Branch.
“Private retailers welcome this expanded delivery regime,” says Jaclynn Pehota, executive director, Retail Cannabis Council of BC. “This is a significant tool for our members. Government heard our request and responded. Knowing that the government supports and is creating parity within the legal cannabis industry will help retailers thrive and will continue to ensure British Columbians have a choice as consumers.”
Pesticide Use in Cannabis
The Province has also released another study showing concerning levels of pesticides in illicit cannabis products, reinforcing the consumer protections that the legal, regulated cannabis system provides.
Samples of illicit dried cannabis and illicit cannabis extract in vaporizer cartridges were tested at federal labs for pesticides and other chemicals. Every sample tested was found to contain pesticides that are not allowed for use on cannabis in the regulated market.
Key findings of this study indicate that pesticides are widely used in illicit cannabis production and that advertised THC levels are overstated in illicit vaporizer cartridges. These were tested for the presence of vitamin E acetate, a substance connected with vaping-associated lung injury, and no evidence of this substance was found.
Cannabis products from the legal, regulated retail market must adhere to Health Canada’s strict testing and production requirements.
This study adds to a growing body of evidence showing that when consumers buy cannabis from the illicit market, they can’t be sure what’s in it.
Read the full report Chemical Analysis of Illicit Cannabis.