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Proposed Amendments to Cannabis Act

On March 11th, Health Canada initiated a 45-day consultation on proposed changes to the Cannabis Act Regulations. The Cannabis Council of Canada (C3), Canada’s leading industry organization for license holders under the Cannabis Act, would like to strongly recognize and thank Health Canada, at all levels and over the tenure of two Ministers, for today’s initiative.

These are timely and consequential amendments to the Cannabis Act that have been the subject of prior consultation. The proposed changes are in keeping with the public health objectives that are the underpinnings of the Act.

Revising Possession Limits

Noteworthy amongst the proposed changes are a long-awaited correction to the formula used to calculate the possession limit for cannabis beverages. The current formula for cannabis beverages over relies upon the weight of the product, causing a distortion that severely limits the number of cannabis beverages that one can legally possess. The formula also distorts the public health principle of “start low, go slow” by favouring higher potency beverages over less potent, higher volume ones.

The proposed amendment very effectively eliminates the distortion and will provide more opportunity for adult Canadian cannabis consumers to sample and consume the broad and growing array of innovative cannabis beverages.

Progressive Approach to Research

Furthermore, the proposed changes to non-therapeutic cannabis research are welcomed and reflect a progressive approach to research involving cannabis. Health Canada has been open and accessible and C3 wishes to acknowledge the nearly unprecedented level of engagement they have offered on this subject. The proposed regulations will enhance the capacity of Cannabis Act License Holders to conduct non-medical research which can foster innovation and improve forms of consumption, while enhancing Canada’s global cannabis research leadership.

Please read and comment on the Proposed Regulations here:
The Regulations Amending Certain Regulations Concerning Cannabis Research and Testing and Cannabis Beverages and the Order Amending Schedule 3 to the Cannabis Act can be found at the following link: Canada Gazette, Part 1, Volume 156, Number 11

George Smitherman is President and CEO of Cannabis Council of Canada. He can be reached at or 416-816-7118.

Tags: Cannabis Act review (6), cannabis possession limits (2), Cannabis Regulations (102), cannabis research (7), Health Canada (64)