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Canadian Senate Amends Cannabis Act to Limit THC, Allow Provincial Bans on Homegrow

May 31, 2018
As Canada’s Cannabis Act nears its final reading in the Senate, the last-minute fussing over its contents is heating up. This week, the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology recommended amendments to the Cannabis Act that would empower provinces to ban home cultivation and establish mandatory THC limits on all cannabis products sold in the country.

The Standing Committee also rejected a number of amendments, some by a small margin, including a proposed nationwide ban on home cultivation.

The Senate committee also recommended that 'social sharing' of cannabis be allowed between parents and their children age 16 or older.

The proposed amendments will be considered by the full Senate, which will vote in favour of or against the bill on June 7.

The provision to establish maximum THC levels does not propose precise limits, but rather requires regulators to do so through regulation once the law is passed. Currently, cannabis oil sold through the country’s medical marijuana program cannot exceed 30mg/ml of THC, although there is no limit on the amount of CBD that the products can contain.

The Senate committee also recommended that “social sharing” be allowed between parents and their children age 16 or older, as well as social sharing between minors within two years age of each other.


Canada Cannabis Legalization: A Guide to Marijuana Laws by Province

Finally, the committee approved a provision requiring all additional cannabis product categories—edibles, concentrates—that go on sale in Canada must first be approved by the House of Commons and Senate.

It’s unknown when exactly cannabis will be legalized. The Senate has taken more time reviewing the legislation than what the cabinet had predicted, so the country will almost assuredly not make the government’s self-imposed July deadline. The provinces and territories have said they need at least two months after passage in order to get their system online. That could push the date of legalization later on in the summer or early in the fall.

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Harrison Jordan

Harrison Jordan is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto and enjoys reading and writing about the regulatory affairs of cannabis in Canada and around the world.

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  • massman

    THC limits? No homegrown? That don’t sound like legalization too me.

    • GloballyAware

      It isn’t legalization.
      It is a harm reduction approach to controlled access for an almost completely harmless plant.
      Ironic considering the greatest harm related to cannabis is through law enforcement.
      Meanwhile alcohol contributes to thousands of deaths per year.
      Our government does not see medicine, or a benign plant.
      They see a major cash cow and are doing everything they can to reap as much as they can from it.

      What we have here is corporatized criminalization of cannabis.

  • Wizard6x9

    That’s right. Circumvention of Constitutional rights. Mandatory roadside demand of our DNA (blood, saliva or maybe both) even without probable cause or without a warrant This government proposed a bill that circumvents judicial protocol.(to ultimately be registered in a database?). Plus required registration of homegrown with municipalities/townships which means random warrant less entries into our homes and gardens by enforcement squads…we cannot refuse them entry. I’ve been so torn about the loss of civil rights…wanting to be legal to avoid some really serious legal consequences of non-compliance…but on the other hand I’m furious about handing over my warrant rights and letting govt enforcement squads onto private property or into my home for inspecting a registered grow for their purpose of finding a reason to hand out fines and penalties…even a potential trip to the pokie if there is a conflict over interpretation of the regs or if they just feel like it…just because they can. I sure hope these major losses of our Constitutional rights is stricken from the legislation before becoming law. I question why police forces are requesting millions to create cannabis-focused special squads to more easily target and criminalize us under what is supposed to be legalization but is in truth a more stringent prohibition with outrageous penalties for infringing 7 aspects of new laws of up to 14 years in prison. We are becoming a Policed State, under the guise of cannabis legalization, this is not for the betterment of citizens but to increase the criminalization of all citizens to effectively to control it’s citizens. More time than for violent crimes, such as rapes, some murders and creating/disseminating child porn. It’s ridiculously, egregiously punitive over a natural plant. I don’t believe this govt has good intentions and is using ‘youth safety’ as an excuse to alter Constitutional rights. Like with alcohol and tobacco, cannabis immediately becomes available to youth the minute a guardian/parent receives the mail or starts growing plants in the home.

  • This is a dirty trick to sabotage legalization and help the black market. The big Trend right now for a long time is that people are getting away from Strictly smoking joints and whole cannabis. A good old fashioned joint will always have its place but Extracts are in. Extracts are good because you don’t have to smoke all that plant material. I smoke extracts. I call it the one puff Wonder. Very easy on my fragile lungs. And nobody wants dirt weed with low THC.
    I created Saferstone to support legalization. Legal marijuana in Canada is subjected to lab testing for public safety. That’s a very good thing and a big improvement over the black market.
    But now I find myself reevaluating if this is something that I can support. THC limits are just stupid. Everybody knows the more THC the more popular than marijuana and the last you need to smoke to get a medical benefit or to get stoned.

    This pic is a concentrate called budder. Dr. Hornby recommends budder because it has virtually no pesticides or other toxic residues. I like budder.

  • Sage

    Politicians shill party propaganda and backroom bidding, civil bureaucrats pad budgets and build empires, crony capitalists pump stock, create millions for insiders and stuff lobbyist coffers to further their takeover.

    Yet, none of this would be possible without the citizen-consumer-patient dutifully abandoning their self-sovereign rights, obediently buying what, where, how they are told to by self-serving ‘experts’ and generally giving in to the hammer of the regime because, well, ‘they’ are just too big, powerful and threatening.

    I say bullsh#t to that. There is a powerful solution

  • I said from the day PM Lollypop announced that indeed his government intended to legalize weed that it was more than a stretch of the truth. This is about control, controlling who buys where and when,dictating THC/CBD content and fleecing the public by price and taxation part if which will go to increased budgets and powers for law enforcement to eliminate anyone who dares sell a single gram.
    This was a bad idea from the start. Be that as it may, prohibition will be a failure as the Genie is out if the bottle. Those of you who voted Liberal this is what you asked for.

  • bleepbleep1961

    Anything in this Country that the Government decides to run … Is destined for failure … Best thing to do come July 1 (or a couple of months later ) is keep on being the same … The same secretive , supply yourself , keep it quiet world living by the same rules as learned in Dr Sumach’s famous book !!! 😀😉✌