Cannabis legalization is less than a year away for citizens of Canada – and at this point we’re all getting curious as to how the Canadian government is going to roll out their newest industry. There are many different ways that they could go about it, and there are probably pros and cons to all of them – but many small and medium-scale growers are worried that the legislation might be written in a way that will only allow major, mass-producing cultivation facilities when the law is finally passed.
In order to speak up for themselves, these smaller scale growers have grouped together in order to explain their side to the Canadian government, in hopes that there will be a place for what we’re coming to know as Craft Cannabis in the Canadian cannabis industry. Cannabis Growers of Canada is a group who hopes to see the dream of many entrepreneurs become reality come April of next year.
Not only could the country lose out on creating thousands of job opportunities, but they would also likely be missing out on the tourism that states like Colorado, Washington, Oregon and soon Alaska are banking in on. Craft Cannabis growers take more time and care with their plants and provide a much more personal touch, especially when compared to mass-produced plants.
“If you’re selling cannabis in a liquor store, in this tightly controlled regulatory environment, you’re not creating tourism. There was no winery tourism in B.C. until they began to de-regulate the winery sector and allow for all these wineries to pop up in the Okanagan,” (Ian Dawkins, Executive Director of the Cannabis Growers of Canada) he said.
“Cannabis is no different. No one is going to fly to Vancouver to go to a pharmacy and buy the Budweiser of joints.”
There are many small scale growers in the United States, though some may have had an easier time than others obtaining the right licenses. In Canada’s current legal medical marijuana market, a cultivation facility that is just a few shy of 400 plants is considered to be small – already favoring larger companies.
A 2013 law attempted to prevent patients from growing their own medical marijuana at home – since then the law has been inactive due to an injunction that will last until the new legislation revisits the issue. This comes after the Supreme Court already ruled that cannabis growing at home was not something the government was going to take away.
“I don’t want to hide what I do. I’m good at what I do. I’m proud of being good at what I do,” (Travis Lane, cultivation facility and online dispensary owner) he said. “I’ve been proactive my whole life in trying to move toward a time where I can openly be a cannabis professional.”
With people like Travis and many others hoping to become a part of the recreational cannabis industry in Canada, it would be a real shame if the government tried to monopolize the industry between a few larger corporations. Legalization is a chance to give a big boost to the economy in their entire country – hopefully they keep this in mind when writing their legislation and hopefully there will be a rightful place for Craft Cannabis growers in Canada.