It’s only a matter of time until cannabis becomes legalized in Canada for recreational use. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has indicated that cannabis will become legal on October 17, 2018. Of course, both federal and local governments will have a say in how it’s regulated. For instance, the feds will regulate production, age limits, advertising, and other factors while the provinces and territories will govern retail distribution, workplace safety, and possession restrictions. Thus, there is a lot to learn over the next few months. Here are five things you need to know about recreational cannabis becoming legal in Canada.
Bill C-45 Made It Happen
On June 18, the Canadian Senate passed Bill C-45 by a vote of 52-29 to legalize recreational cannabis in Canada. The only step left is for the bill to receive Royal Assent. The final bill passed by the Senate will not allow individual provinces and territories to ban recreational cannabis. Instead, Canada’s provinces and territories will likely receive 8 to 12 weeks so local and provincial governments can prepare before Bill C-45 takes effect. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced an official legalization date for October 17.
You Are Allowed Up to 4 Plants in Your Home
Not only will you soon be able to buy cannabis legally, but you’ll also be able to grow it. Of course, there will be regulations on this, and individuals will only be able to grow up to four cannabis plants per residence. However, it appears that the provinces of Quebéc, Manitoba, and Nunavut will not allow for home cultivation of cannabis.
5 Different Available Products
When it becomes legal, stores that sell cannabis will be allowed to carry five different products. This will include cannabis in dry, fresh, and oil forms, as well as both cannabis seeds and plants. However, with both Quebec and Manitoba poised to ban homegrown cannabis plants, it seems unlikely for consumers to be able to buy either plants or seeds in those provinces.
Age Limit of 19 in Most Provinces
The sale of cannabis is expected to be treated much like the sale of alcohol. For instance, it will be distributed primarily through liquor boards or the subsidiaries of liquor boards. Naturally, the age restrictions on buying cannabis will largely be the same for alcohol. That means most Canadians will be able to purchase at age 19. However, Quebéc and Alberta will allow cannabis sales at age 18, which is the same as the drinking age in those provinces. The only outlier is Manitoba, which serves alcohol at 18 but has set an age limit of 19 on cannabis.
Time and Place Restrictions Still in Place
Of course, legalizing cannabis won’t mean it’ll be okay to use it everywhere you go. Using cannabis in public parks, enclosed public spaces, and inside motor vehicles won’t be allowed. Similar restrictions are already in place for those who use medical cannabis. There will also be tougher laws for impaired drivers who are under the influence of cannabis.
Estimated Cost of $10 per Gram
Right now, the estimated cost of cannabis will be $10 per gram. Canada’s finance ministers have stated that they want the price of legal cannabis to deter people from buying it on the black market. It’s also important to know that buyers will be limited to no more than 30 grams at a time, which is also the most an individual can have in his or her possession while in public. Of course, for most cannabis users, 30 grams should be enough to last at least a month.
Hopefully, this serves as a good crash course for what you should know before cannabis becomes legal in Canada. You’ll also want to look into the specific regulations that will be enforced in your home city and province so you’ll know exactly what to expect when cannabis becomes legal in Canada later this year.