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Cannabis Legalization

Counterfeit Cannabis Products Permeating in Saskatchewan

Daniel King

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Fake Cannabis Products Permeating Saskatchewan Market

Counterfeit cannabis products bearing symbols resembling the Health Canada labels are invading the market in Saskatchewan, CBC reports. Several physical and online stores have been found selling these fake items.

The symbol that indicates official certifications from Health Canada shows the letters THC and an outline of a cannabis leaf inside a red octagon. While this logo is exclusive only for legal marijuana products, some illicit products are found carrying this symbol.

Products with Health Canada logos are tested by the organization for quality assurance and compliance. The standardized symbol also indicates that the product contains THC that is more than the standard 10 micrograms per gram.

The attempt to disguise counterfeit marijuana as legitimate consumer goods can lead to customers making illegal transactions. This can lead to serious legal and health repercussions.

According to Prairie Records assistant manager Chase Ruttig, he discovered the existence of these fake products when a customer carried one inside the shop. Ruttig notes that the packaging of the illicit item is extremely similar to legitimate ones. However, these items lack the right information present in legal goods.

Essential details placed on the packages of authentic products include a lot number and the dosage of cannabinoids (CBD and THC) present in the product.

The similarity of both types of products can cause “a lot of confusion” about stores that sell legitimate cannabis, says Ruttig. Customers may have difficulty distinguishing the right product to get.

David Morris, the spokesperson of Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority (SLGA), said that the Authority has been informed of the existence of the falsified labels. SLGA and Health Canada is now urging cannabis users to purchase legal products, which can be acquired only through authorized distributors.

Fake labels are seemingly easy to create as the standardized symbol is available for download at the Government of Canada website. Different file formats are available in the page, along with the codes used for the logo’s colors.

Consumers are encouraged to check for legitimate labelling including the lot number, health warnings and dosage information.

Meanwhile, Health Canada released a statement indicating that federally licensed dispensaries and sellers under the Cannabis Act are the only legitimate sources of legal cannabis. For a list of licensed cultivators, processors and sellers of marijuana, visit Health Canada. The regulatory body also provided a list of sellers who are authorized to sell cannabis seeds and plants.

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Cannabis Legalization

Hawaii is the 16th to Decriminalized Cannabis in the US

Jordan Webber

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Hawaii Decriminalize Cannabis

The state of Hawaii recently announced that it no longer considers possession of small amounts of cannabis a criminal offense. The decriminalization makes Hawaii the 16th in the United States’ jurisdiction to do so.

Hawaii is recognized as the first state to legalize medical marijuana back in 2000. Governor David Ige clarified that the state is not yet ready to legalize the use of marijuana for recreational purposes. Moreover, Ige “declined to sign” the law that decriminalized possession in small amounts.

However, the law will be implemented on January 11, 2020, despite the lack of the governor’s signature. This occurred because Ige failed to make his move before the deadline to veto the legislation.

With this bill in place, individuals who carry small amounts of marijuana will not be charged with a misdemeanor. The law states that individuals with “3 grams or less of weed” will be fined $130. No jail time applies for such instances.

In the past, a misdemeanor charge in Hawaii warrants up to 30 days in prison. A penalty of $1000 in fines also applied.

According to the governor of Hawaii, there are aspects of the legislation which “[he does not] like.” Ige also did not place the law on the list of laws he is deliberating for a veto.

In a news conference, the governor said that he did consider the decriminalization legislation. However, he expressed disapproval of the lack of stipulations regarding substance abuse treatments for younger individuals.

Ige remarked that while Hawaii continues to study issues encountered by other states with legal recreational marijuana, legalizing the recreational use is not yet on the agenda. He also emphasized that governors of other states “acknowledge significant problems with those measures.”

Meanwhile, eleven states (including Washington, D.C.) have laws that legalized recreational cannabis. In the latest development, Illinois is the first state to have a recreational marijuana legalization law that was signed by the state’s government. The state also allowed residents to appeal their convictions.

All other laws for recreational marijuana were made possible by ballot initiatives.

The governor’s legislation history regarding cannabis includes two vetoes for marijuana bills, which the legislature passed. He also shot down a law intended to legalize the transportation of medical marijuana from one island to another. He also prevented the passing of another law which intended to create a licensing process for industrial hemp.

 

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Cannabis Legalization

Michigan Releases Emergency Rules for Marijuana Businesses

Jordan Webber

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Michigan's Emergency Rules for Marijuana

The Marijuana Regulatory Agency in Michigan recently announced emergency rules for businesses planning to sell marijuana to individuals 21 years old and up. According to their press release, cannabis-focused companies intending to distribute cannabis products can apply by November 1.

These laws will be implemented for half a year, with the possibility of being extended for another half. According to the website of the local government of Michigan, the rules are formulated in view of the recent legalization of cannabis. The implementation of these rules works toward the regulation and taxation of cannabis products.

Marijuana Act in Michigan provides a structure for the state which should be referred to when licensing and regulation cannabis-focused businesses. It also prescribes fines, sanctions, and remedies when necessary.

No capitalization requirements were outlined by the rules.

Moreover, the law allows license holders to acquire temporary licenses when participating in events. Entities with a license to cultivate plants are also given more leeway in terms of the number of crops they are allowed to possess. For businesses with valid licenses under common ownership, they will be able to set up shop on-site.

However, the law clarifies that dispensaries selling medical and recreational cannabis in one location should create a clear delineation between medical and recreational products. This aims to aid customers in identifying which products are for specific purposes.

Andrew Brisbo, executive director of the Marijuana Regulatory Agency said that the rules allow local governments and interested businesses to have a clear set of guidelines. This gives prospective licensees all the info they require for entering the industry in Michigan.

As the regulatory body will start entertaining applications on November 1, Brisbo believes that businesses and municipalities have ample time to review the guidelines before entering the sector.

Pertaining to the potential effects of the emergency rules, Brisbo said that the implementation of the guidelines censures the success of the cannabis sector, as well as the safety of customers.

Josh Hovey from the Michigan Cannabis Industry Association said that the Michigan emergency rules are “well thought out and forward-thinking.” Hovey remarked that the lack of capitalization requirements makes licenses “more accessible” to businesses with smaller capitals.

Meanwhile, medical marijuana facility growers require assets amounting to $150,000 to $500,000 as per state law.

Last fall, Michigan residents voted for the legalization of recreational marijuana, joining ten other states and the District of Columbia in doing so.

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Cannabis Legalization

Grandpa Accidentally Gives Marijuana Cake to Nurses as ‘Thank You Gift’

Stacey Wellington

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Grandpa's Marijuana Cake

A pensioner recently got into a hot issue as he was reported to give marijuana cake to a group of nurses as a ‘thank you’ gift.

The man unknowingly gifted the laced cake, a leftover from his grandson’s 18th birthday, to the nurse staff at Warrington Hospital in Cheshire.

This incident happened on May 27 in England. The staff nurse reportedly noticed a strange smell coming from the cake then called the police after.

Authorities have conducted an investigation and the cake was destroyed immediately.

However, one nurse staff was reported to have eaten a piece of the cake but didn’t suffer any ‘ill effects.’ Meanwhile, authorities confirmed that no patient ate any of the desserts.

The Cheshire Police released a statement saying, “The Trust activated its usual incident investigation process and interviewed all staff concerned; only one member of the staff ate the cake, no-one came to any harm and no patients are the cake. We are now working with staff to exercise caution on receiving edible gifts.”

Marijuana Edible Safety

The policies and laws of marijuana consumption in the United Kingdom are a little complicated because of the recent transfer of cannabis from Type C class to Type B.

 

Class Drug Possession Supply & Production
          A Crack cocaine, cocaine, ecstasy (MDMA), heroin, LSD, magic mushrooms, methadone, methamphetamine (crystal meth) Up to 7 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both Up to life in prison, an unlimited fine or both
          B Amphetamines, barbiturates, cannabis, codeine, methylphenidate (Ritalin), synthetic cannabinoids, synthetic cathinones (e.g. mephedrone, methoxetamine), ketamine Up to 5 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both Up to 14 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both
          C Anabolic steroids, benzodiazepines (diazepam), gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB), gamma-butyrolactone (GBL),  piperazines (BZP), khat Up to 2 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both Up to 14 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both

 

Under this classification, arrest involving marijuana is possible if a person grows, sells and distribute the substance. Possession of cannabis is still illegal according to law, however, the authorities can only give a warning if a person is caught with less than one ounce of marijuana supply. Unlimited fines and maximum prison time of 14 years is given if a person is caught with larger amounts of this substance.

However, given the reclassification of marijuana, authorities have taken a ‘laid-back attitude’ to recreational use, which is popular in the UK.

The police target those using stronger substance, including cocaine, meth, heroin and other drugs.

Meanwhile, starting Nov. 1 this year, doctors can already prescribe cannabis products to patients suffering from epilepsy, cancer and other life-threatening conditions. The only catch is, people who can use marijuana for medical purposes need to prove that they are suffering from such conditions with lab results and doctor’s note.

According to HOME Secretary Sajid Javid, “Product must contain cannabis, cannabis resin, cannabidiol or a cannabidiol derivative.”

This new policy applies to Scotland, Wales, and England.

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