Edibles off the menu on Vancouver Island

Vancouver Island residents who enjoy gorging on edibles when consuming cannabis won’t be able to purchase products at Gorge Medijuana Dispensaries any more.

Or possibly at many others after the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) has announced its intention to crack down the sale of unauthorized edible cannabis products.

Last week VIHA inspectors hit Gorge’s Victoria location after receiving a complaint and decided they are no longer allowed to sell edibles, and owners have agreed to comply for now.

VIHA communications director Shannon Marshall said the health agency will soon be issuing similar warnings to other dispensaries selling edibles ion the island.

Screen Shot 2017-03-18 at 3.44.19 PM“A member of the public went into a marijuana dispensary and made a complaint about the sanitation and the fact they are selling edible food products there,” said Marshall. “They called our environmental health officers and based on that complaint, they did an inspection and issued an order for that dispensary to no longer sell those food products … and there’s no approved source for marijuana edibles at this time.”

The Public Health Act and the Food Premises Regulations require that anyone selling or making food products must be approved by VIHA.

The City Victoria recently passed regulations that will allow dispensaries to apply for business licenses, and the new rules permit for the sale of edibles, but the health authority’s jurisdiction essentially overules them.

After the so-called Cookie Case in 2015,  the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that “the prohibition on non-dried medical marihuana undermines the health and safety of medical marihuana users by diminishing the quality of their medical care” and that derivatives are now allowed. However, currently the only legal sources for edible cannabis products are via mail from licensed producers authorized by Health Canada.

Gorge is encouraging anyone who disagrees with this policy to contact VIHA directly by calling 250-370-8699 or emailing info@viha.ca.