After hearing the feedback from almost 50,000 British Columbians, the provincial government released BC’s first decisions on cannabis regulation today, announcing a mix of public and private retailers of recreationalcannabis once it is legalized in 2018, finally confirming what many believed BC was going to do.
Other details include:
Minimum age of 19, bringing cannabis in line with the minimum age for alcohol and tobacco
The BC Liquor Distribution Branch will be the wholesale supplier for all recreational cannabis in the province
The feedback, which was collected in a survey that was open to the public from Sept. 25 to Nov. 1, 2017, helped inform many of the decisions that the government made.
As Minister of Public Safety and BC’s Solicitor General Mike Farnworth said,
“Looking at the responses received, it’s clear that British Columbians support the priorities of protecting young people, health and safety, keeping the criminal element out of cannabis and keeping roads safe, which will guide the Province in developing B.C.’s regulatory framework for non-medical cannabis.”
Big questions remain
Who will be supplying the cannabis? Will it be Licensed Producer weed only, or will the province allow the growers that operate outside of the government regime into the legal market?
What will happen to the hundreds of dispensaries that Vancouver already has, and how will the ones without business licenses be treated compared to the few that managed to get one?
As the government said in the news release, “B.C. still has a number of key decisions to make as it prepares for the legalization of cannabis. These decisions will be informed by the feedback collected through the public and stakeholder engagement, and on-going consultation with local and Indigenous governments and other key stakeholders.”
So in other words, stay tuned, many more details are sure to come.
What do you think of the government’s decisions so far? Let us know in the comments below!