The province is now distributing new categories of legal non-medical cannabis products. This begins the second phase of available products since legalization began in October 2018.
The Liquor Distribution Branch (LDB) received its first shipments of products under the new categories on December 18, 2019, and has made them available to private and public retailers throughout the province, including the BC Cannabis Store at 115-7035 Barnet Street in Powell River, via its wholesale customer portal, according to an LDB media release. Consumers can expect to see these products on legal retail store shelves in late December, in accordance with LDB’s shipping schedules.
The LDB, the sole wholesale distributor of non-medical cannabis in BC, has registered more than 260 individual products within the new categories of edibles, extracts and topicals to make up its initial wholesale product assortment, according to the release. However, only a small number are expected to be available for retail sale within the first few months of 2020. Availability of products is dependent upon a number of factors, including the ability of manufacturers to meet demand from other markets across Canada.
“The addition of edibles, extracts and topicals represents the provincial government’s commitment to providing safe, regulated non-medical cannabis products to BC consumers,” stated LDB general manager and chief executive officer Blain Lawson. “A lot of work has gone into procuring these products and we look forward to working with our suppliers as they continue to introduce new products to market.”
New products registered within the initial release include:
· beverages, such as carbonated and non-carbonated drinks, tea bags, oils and powders
· products intended to be eaten, such as chocolate, cookies, soft chews and mints
· vaporizers and cartridges
· other extracts, such as shatter and hashish
· topicals, defined as cannabis-infused products intended to be applied to the hair, skin or nails
Oils and capsules, which were included in products legalized on October 17, 2018, are now reclassified as extracts.
Products in these newly legalized categories will have the same plain, Health Canada-approved packaging and labelling requirements in place for existing cannabis products on the adult-use market. They must be contained in a child-proof package that bears the cannabis symbol, health warnings related to consumption, and THC and CBD contents of the product.
The media release states the LDB will continue to expand its variety of wholesale products as licensed producers make new products available and Health Canada licenses new producers. The branch is working with more than 40 licensed producers to form its entire wholesale product assortment.
The provincial government recently passed legislation increasing the provincial sales tax (PST) on vapour products from seven per cent to 20 per cent beginning January1, 2020. The new tax rate will be applied at the point of retail sale to all vaping devices and substances used with the vaping device, as well as to any vaping part or accessory.
Buying legally from licensed, private non-medical cannabis retail outlets and government-run BC Cannabis Stores is the only way to ensure a product is regulated by Health Canada, according to the LDB.
Dry herb vaporizers (vaporizers used with dry cannabis) will remain subject to the seven per cent PST rate.