This is just a glimpse. Want to receive every issue of Cannabis Wire Daily, our newsletter that is sent to subscribers each weekday morning, and unlimited access to cannabiswire.com?
What do Canada’s cannabis regulators have to say about “intoxicating cannabinoids?”
While debates over intoxicating cannabinoids continue to heat up in the U.S., as products with delta-8 and the like are freely available from coast to coast, in part due to legal confusion around hemp-derived products, there is less concern in Canada.
“Use of these types of products is much higher in the U.S. than Canada. That has almost certainly everything to do with the sort of patchwork regulatory framework in the U.S. across states, and the fact that these products are used as loopholes. We don’t see them in Canada,” said David Hammond, a researcher at the University of Waterloo, last week.
He was speaking at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Committee on the Public Health Consequences of Changes in the Cannabis Policy Landscape meeting last week, as we reported in this newsletter.
Nonetheless, Health Canada has issued “guidance on cannabis products with intoxicating cannabinoids other than delta-9-THC” this week.
“Some cannabis processors have made cannabis products containing intoxicating cannabinoids like these, either instead of delta-9-THC or in addition to it,” they wrote. “Deliberately including intoxicating cannabinoids to cannabis products to circumvent regulatory controls on delta-9-THC could increase risks to public health and public safety. Health Canada is concerned that consumers aren’t aware of these products and of their potential risks.”
They go on to make clear that, in addition to “delta-9-THC, many other cannabinoids, including their isomers and derivatives, are subject to the Cannabis Act.” One point of contention is the inclusion of CBN in the list of “intoxicating” cannabinoids.
As such, they note that “the total amount of all intoxicating cannabinoids including delta-9-THC shouldn’t exceed the regulatory limits for total THC per immediate container or discrete unit.”
This guidance does not amend the Cannabis Act, but Health Canada notes that they might do so.
“The Government of Canada can advance amendments to the Act or Regulations to address the public health and public safety risks posed by intoxicating cannabinoids other than delta-9-THC. Health Canada will continue to conduct research and monitor trends in the make up and availability of cannabis products containing intoxicating cannabinoids other than delta-9-THC and will take regulatory action if warranted,” they wrote in a disclaimer.
More governors push Biden on scheduling.
A group of governors sent a letter to Biden this week to make the case for moving cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule III.
The group includes: Colorado Gov. Jared Polis; Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker; Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards; Maryland Gov. Wes Moore, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, and New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy.
“This decision by a leading federal health agency comes on the heels of 38 states creating their own state markets and complementary regulatory systems. In some cases, these state regimes have thrived for more than a decade, and this recommendation by FDA is a real testament to their success. It’s a signal that FDA and the Department of Health and Human Services have faith in state regulators and the regulations that they have promulgated to keep citizens safe,” they wrote.
While Polis has been particularly outspoken about the rescheduling push, the inclusion of less-expected-names like Hochul is noteworthy.
What’s in the New Hampshire legalization committee’s report?
As Cannabis Wire reported last week, a committee formed to study and make recommendations on legislation to legalize cannabis for adult use under a state-run model ultimately decided, after months of work, to make “no recommendation.”
So, what is included in the report, which was due to the legislature on Friday?
“The Commission met nine times from September 8th to November 27th and reviewed draft legislation extensively,” wrote Sen. Daryl Abbas in his chair’s report, going on to note the range of testimony heard, from law enforcement to medical professionals.
“Ultimately, the Commission voted to not recommend legislation for the 2024 Session. The first motion of recommending draft legislation that the Commission worked on to be introduced next session was defeated by a vote of 5-4. A subsequent motion to make no recommendation was made and passed by a vote of 7-2,” he continued.
He then pointed to a list of “unresolved issues,” from the “level of THC in legal product” to the “number of retail stores.”
The remainder of the report includes meeting minutes, text of the bill upon which they could not agree, and reports submitted by various groups, like the ACLU and the New Hampshire Medical Society.
Whether lawmakers move forward with this specific adult use bill remains to be seen. For now, New Hampshire remains the only state in the northeast U.S. without legal adult use.
You can read the full report here.