Recently, the Federal Government legalized the sale of cannabis edibles, extracts and topicals. As a result of timelines outlined in the Cannabis Regulations, edibles, extracts and topicals are not expected to become available for at least 60 days after October 17.
“Safety of cannabis products remains our key focus and we want to ensure people who choose to consume these products are aware of the risks,” said Gene Makowsky, minister responsible for the liquor and gaming authority, in a release. “One of the most important ways to consume cannabis products safely is to ensure you are buying products from a licensed retailer who obtains their supply through a regulated source.”
In advance of these products becoming available, there are important points consumers should keep in mind regarding the retail and consumption of cannabis.
Some things to remember if one chooses to consume cannabis products:
- In Saskatchewan, the minimum age for buying and consuming all forms of cannabis, including edibles, is 19 years of age.
- Licensed retailers are required to follow specific health and safety guidelines regarding the products they sell. The list of licensed retailers in Saskatchewan (stores and online) can be found on SLGA’s website at https://www.slga.com/permits-and-licences/cannabis-permits/cannabis-retailing/cannabis-retailers-in-saskatchewan.
- All cannabis products, including edibles that may look like candy, baked goods or other food items, should be stored in a place that cannot be reached by children or pets.
- Possession of any amount of non-medical cannabis by a minor is prohibited.
- If you choose to consume edibles, be aware of the amount you are consuming and keep in mind that edible cannabis takes longer to take effect than smoking cannabis. In fact, edibles may not take effect for hours after being consumed. The effects of edibles are also generally more intense and last longer than the effects of inhaling cannabis.
- Consuming any form of non-medical cannabis in public spaces is prohibited, including schools and daycares. Individuals can only carry up to 30 grams of dried cannabis or equivalent in public.
- Possessing, consuming or distributing any form of cannabis in a vehicle could result in a $300 fine. Cannabis cannot be used in a vehicle and can only be transported from one lawful place (store, home) to another lawful place (home, another’s home). This is consistent with the rules already in place for alcohol and vehicles.
- There is zero tolerance for all drug-impaired driving in Saskatchewan. It remains illegal to drive while impaired in Saskatchewan whether by alcohol or any drug, including cannabis. Penalties for driving under the influence of cannabis may include immediate license suspension, vehicle seizure for up to 60 days, and licence suspension for up to five years upon conviction of drug-impaired driving. These laws apply to everyone, including medicinal users of cannabis.
- There are a variety of tickets in place for provincial cannabis offences that range from $200 to $2,250. In more serious instances, individuals could be charged with a provincial offence and face fines ranging from $25,000 to $100,000 and imprisonment of up to six months.
Government will continue to monitor the long-term effects of the legalization of cannabis and the effectiveness of the provincial cannabis legislation to ensure a balance exists between maintaining a legal market and protecting public health and safety, the release concluded.