If you’ve been anxiously awaiting edibles since they were legalized on October 17, 2019, you’ll be sad to hear that legal products won’t be hitting shelves until mid-January 2020 in Alberta (at the earliest). Despite efforts by licensed producers and retailers to have them available for the holidays, added regulations and check-points have created further delays.
Three Canadian provinces will be affected—Ontario, Quebec, and Alberta. These provinces all run their own regulated distribution systems rather than allowing producers to sell directly to retailers. Following the 60-day approval process by Health Canada, products in Alberta are also reviewed by Alberta Gaming, Liquor, and Cannabis (AGLC) for excise stamps. Brad Churchill, owner of Choklat completed his permitting in July and describes his lengthy journey of delays here.
Many in the cannabis industry have been anxiously awaiting the roll-out of Cannabis 2.0 hoping that it will generate a second wave of users who are looking for alternative options to smoking. These products range from extracts, topicals, and edibles. This will lead to an assortment of options hitting the shelves such as carefully labelled teas, gummies, chocolates, low-calorie drinks, baked goods and more.
Consumer feedback has been largely divided with some stating that the 10mg THC limit per item or 10mg THC limit per package for edibles, will keep many purchasing from the black market. Based on these limits, many seasoned consumers will need to buy 3 or more individual items to achieve their desired effects (not to mention at higher prices). THC limits vary across product types along with additional regulations stipulated by Health Canada that include strict packing and labelling requirements to help prevent over-consumption and appeal to children.
Glimpses of the new Cannabis 2.0 products can be seen by retailers in BC and SK who started receiving shipments throughout December. Unfortunately the guessing game will continue into the New Year for Alberta.
Please remember to consult your local retailers for additional product details and consumption information.