With nationwide legal recreational marijuana coming to Canada this October, the country is about to host one of the world’s biggest legal weed parties, but somebody is noticeably missing from the guest list: concentrates.
Though extracts and oil cartridges are legal to distribute at medical marijuana dispensaries in Canada, they are not going to be legit in the recreational market. That’s because Health Canada (kind of like Canada’s equivalent of U.S. Health & Human Services) doesn’t have the foggiest when it comes to understanding the medical benefits and risks involved in extracts.
According to the CBC, “Health Canada says more evidence is needed of the risks and harms of vape pens and cannabis concentrates. The government is concerned about high potency, and the chemicals and solvents that are used to extract the concentrated form of cannabis.”
Michael John Milloy, a research scientist at the British Columbia Centre on Substance Use, agrees. “I think there are concerns, in terms of psychosis, in terms of anxiety,” he said.
MIlloy also said that there are considerable medicinal benefits to using concentrates over flowers, such as regulated dosage.
The Canadian government’s reluctance to embrace concentrates leaves a big opportunity for black market operators, the CBC points out.
“If the government’s mandate is to protect children and stamp out the black market, this is the single biggest gift that the government could give the black market. To allow for certain forms of cannabis, and not all,” said Josh Campbell, president of the California concentrate manufacturer dosist.
Campbell predicts that the illegal cannabis market in Canada will likely move away from flowers to embrace concentrates, since they will be unregulated. He added that he thinks concentrate sales may even outpace cannabis flowers in the coming years.
Photo via Flickr user WeedPornDaily