The legal status of weed & weed-related products in Canada

Canada has had its fair share of movement in the past few years when it comes to the legalization of weed, edibles, and concentrates. Much of this movement has resulted in positive rulings; helping to legalize cannabis in a plethora of forms.

Although, there are still many geological, form, and law differences throughout the Great White North that can be confusing (and potentially legally dangerous). From one province to the next, it can be difficult to know if the laws that you are accustomed to are the same laws that prevail in your current geographic location. This creates a lot of problems, anxiety, and uncertainty throughout Canada natives who enjoy a toke or two; as they are unsure if they are breaking the law, without even knowing it.

This legality update was created to help quell these fears and uncertainties. Here is the current status of weed, edibles, and concentrates throughout Canada. 

The Legality of Weed in Canada

Weed (or Cannabis) was legalized throughout Canada on October 27, 2018, allowing the legal purchase of weed online & in stores. However, that legalization, known as the Cannabis Act came with strict regulations on who could use weed, how much an adult could be in possession of, and strict punishments for violation. 

The basics of the Cannabis Act Stated:

  • You must be 18 or older to use or possess Cannabis.
  • You must not have more than 30 grams of legal cannabis, dried or equivalent in non-dried form in public.
  • You may only share up to 30 grams of legal cannabis with other adults.
  • You must buy weed from a providence-sanctioned dealer. 

While the Cannabis Act was a major win for the Canadian public, it was still highly regulated and highly enforced; especially since there was still the stigma that weed was an illegal substance. Nevertheless, Canada reported that dried cannabis represented 92% of the total sales, with 5,390,545 packaged units sold in 2019. 

There is a lot of information about the different aspects of Cannabis legalization available on the nation’s website, under the Cannabis Stats Hub. While there is a plethora of useful information and anonymous data collection by Canadians, especially when it comes to the price of weed, it is invasive. The micromanagement of these statistics showcases how close the Canadian government watches every sale and how that sale affects the criminalized dynamics of Cannabis use.

Are Edibles Legal in Canada?

Edibles were legalized a little less than a year after weed, on October 17, 2019. This law was an amendment to the original Cannabis Act and was created with two specific goals, according to The Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation:

  • To displace the illegal market.
  • To keep profits out of the hands of criminals and organized crime.

Of course, weed edibles in Canada continue to be closely regulated, for the alleged health and safety risks that they pose. The reason edibles are considered more potentially dangerous than smoking weed is because the effects of edibles are slower to onset and the high could last for much longer. While this is preferred for many users, safety regulations, specifically for people driving and working while under the influence is extended several hours.

It is for this reason that a person, eighteen years or older can only have 15 grams of edibles in their possession. Nevertheless, edibles are still legal in Canada.

Unfortunately, due to the tight restrictions, the market has only recently started to open up. Even though edibles were legalized in October of 2019 the supply did not even start to catch up to the demand until December of 2019. Even now, it is not a guarantee that adults looking for certain edibles will be able to acquire them at will. 

Still, edible providers continue to work diligently to keep what their customers want most in stock. 

The Legality of Concentrates in Canada

Concentrates became legal for Canadians at the same time edibles became legal, on October 17, 2019. Yet, even with the full range of Cannabis products having some recreational legality across the country, there are still a lot of different specifications, especially when it comes to weed concentrates

  • Concentrates may only be sold as ingested capsules and vaping products.
  • Vape concentrate products can only contain up to 1,000 mg of THC. 
  • The maximum package size that can be sold is 90 ml for liquid extracts, so long as it is under 3% THC.
  • No concentrates product can contain added vitamins, minerals, nicotine, alcohol, caffeine, sugars, colors, or sweeteners.

Admittedly, the last one is a little picky, when it comes to colors and sweeteners. Although, as Canadians and the rest of the world have been doing throughout this entire process, they will continue to take what they can get.

Concentrates contain the most desirable parts of the cannabis plant and therefore, they can be the most potent. While the main concern here, especially for the Canadian government is consumption, there are many different products that can contain concentrates. Thus, this portion of weed growth and utilization is one to watch particularly close.

Provincial Cannabis Laws

Under the Cannabis Act, each province throughout Canada has the right to add its own regulations about weed, edibles, and concentrates. Even though technically, these items from the Cannabis plant are legal, each providence can amend the rules in the following areas: 

  • The selling of Cannabis
  • The location of Cannabis stores
  • How Cannabis stores operate
  • Who is allowed to sell Cannabis
  • The lowering of possession limits
  • The increasing of the minimum age
  • The restriction of where cannabis may be used in public

This is the portion of the law that muddies the waters when it comes to true Cannabis legalization, as many provinces have taken the liberty to use this power. Therefore, it is extremely important to be conscious of the laws inside all of the provinces throughout Canada, if you are traveling with your Cannabis.

Additionally, please note that it is still illegal to cross the Canadian border, either coming or going, with any Cannabis product. This includes using Cannabis medicinally. 

In closing, it seems that the legalization of weed, edibles, and concentrates is still rapidly evolving. Therefore, if you are a weed, edible, or concentrates partaker and plan to leave the area that you know best, it is always a good idea to check cross-state and providence laws; not only for where you are going but how you are getting there. That way, you can bring and enjoy the items that help you relax, feel better, and have a good time.

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