Canada’s Hybrid Cannabis Distribution Models
Since the Canadian Federal government announced that cannabis, both recreational and medicinal, will be legalized on July 1, 2018, the Canadian government and provinces have found the process of figuring out distribution to be a difficult task. However, Alberta and Manitoba have developed some very interesting distribution models which they describe as hybrids.
Before explaining how Alberta and Manitoba are approaching distribution issues, a brief review of the process that led to the legalization of cannabis follows.
There are many beneficial medicinal uses of cannabis. In the 19th century, cannabis mixtures and remedies were common “cupboard” remedies. After the marijuana ban in the 1900’s, these health benefits were perceived to be myths. Today these benefits are still present in the herb and you can read more about it here.
However, it wasn’t just the health benefits that piqued the interest of the Canadian Federal government. A variety of different charity organizations also began to spring up, giving donations and support to a variety of different causes. You can check out these organizations here.
Due to these factors, as well as the strong support for Trudeau, who promised to legalize marijuana, the legislation will be enacted on July 1st, 2018.
Alberta: One city in particular has released information on its “hybrid model” to tackle the issue. Alberta has announced that marijuana will be sold through private brick-and-mortar stores and all online sales will be governed by the government. As discussed by the Edmonton Journal, the idea of allowing publicly owned dispensaries was an ongoing controversy but was eventually thrown out and this hybrid model is planned to be enacted by the end of December. The liquor distributor of the province will be in control of the 150 privately owned marijuana stores in Alberta.
Furthermore, although the legal age has been set at 18, provinces may raise the legal age if they wish.
Manitoba: Another interesting announcement came from Manitoba. They have also unveiled a “hybrid model” for their distribution of marijuana starting in July of next year. However, Manitoba’s model doesn’t involve the government. The Manitoba Liquors and Lotteries Corp will be in charge of supplying and tracking marijuana while private retail stores will distribute it.
CBC discusses how Manitoba is currently accepting applications for retail stores until December 22nd. They also plan to enter the cannabis market and be quite competitive, as an attempt to significantly reduce the spread of cannabis through the illegal market. These retail stores will have to meet very strict application guidelines. Some of these guide lines relate to the location of the store if is it close to neighborhoods, schools, offices, etc.
Although the legislation to legalize recreational marijuana will not be enacted for several months, there is still the opportunity to acquire a medical marijuana card for the treatment of many varieties of ailments and illnesses that marijuana can help alleviate. For example, Marijuana is a great substitute for pain medication and it won’t destroy the liver. Marijuana can also help many people who are dealing with anxiety and depression. For information about acquiring a medical marijuana license in Canada, please check out what MMJ Canada has to say.
Although the distribution issues are still being resolved, it is reassuring to know that some government entities like Alberta and Manitoba are taking steps to resolve and accommodate the new legislation. Their hybrid models will prove to be helpful to other provinces and governments as they struggle with the distribution and management of marijuana.