With the holidays behind us, longer days and warmer temperatures are on the way — and so are changes to Canada’s recreational cannabis laws. Bill C-45, which has to do with the legalization, regulation, and sale of recreational cannabis, is slated to become federal law no later than July 2018. This means that cannabis producers, retailers, and consumers all across Canada are in for an especially interesting summer.
But what do these changes mean for the budding Canadian cannabis industry? Canada’s government is on the cusp of making legal history, and here’s what you need to know.
Canada’s Current Recreational Cannabis Laws
Like most of the rest of the world, the growth, possession, and consumption of recreational cannabis is currently illegal in Canada. You’re shocked, we know. Although sweeping changes are just over the horizon, the current laws will remain in effect until C-45 is enacted.
With a thriving and prolific culture of weed positivity spreading blazingly fast across all the provinces, though, it’s likely that nothing much will change for the average consumer in the interim. However, many investors are poised to capitalize on the changing landscape of cannabis culture in Canada, and take part in what’s sure to be an exciting venture.
Here’s a quick breakdown — once the new federal laws pass, adults 18 years and older will be able to legally:
- Possess up to 30 grams of dried cannabis, or the equivalent in non-dried form
- Share up to 30 grams of cannabis with other adults
- Purchase dried or fresh cannabis and cannabis oil from a provincially-licensed retailer or federally-licensed online producer
- Grow up to 4 cannabis plants from licensed seeds or seedlings, to a maximum of 100 cm tall
- Make cannabis products at home
Basically, the division of labour between the federal government and provincial governments will be split. The federal government will regulate the production of cannabis, set strict guidelines for producers, and deal with the nitty-gritty, like proper packaging, promotion, and even recommended serving sizes.
Retailer licensing and everything to do with sales will be up to each individual province. They’ll also have jurisdiction over aspects like raising the minimum legal age for consumption, establishing where cannabis products can be consumed, and lowering the maximum amount you can possess.
What Does this Mean for You?
It’s an exciting time to be an investor! The Canadian cannabis market has been growing like a… well, you know. And when Constellation Brands Inc. went public with their 9.9% investment in Canopy Growth Corp. (TSX:WEED), it spurred even more excitement about future opportunities.
Recreational legalization is expected to add as much as $3.7 billion to annual sales, which is good news for the Canadian kingpins of cannabis, like Canopy and Aurora Cannabis Inc. (TSX:ACB).
Just remember, as with any budding industry, it’s smart to be prepared for some volatility in the market. Getting in now has the potential for stunning returns, but it’s a good idea to be prepared in case of a violent correction.
But for right now, the future of cannabis in Canada looks bright!