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The Competition Bureau, Canada’s independent competition watchdog, is recommending that Health Canada increase THC limits on edibles and relax packaging rules. The bureau reasons that these changes will allow cannabis licensees to better compete while making illegal market products less attractive to consumers.
“The Bureau believes that stronger competition in the cannabis industry would help foster innovation and benefit consumers by providing them with increased choice and quality. Importantly, these benefits would serve to further displace illicit market activity and bolster the legal cannabis industry.”
Source – “Competition Bureau provides recommendations to improve competition in the cannabis industry”, May 26, 2023 news release.
The recommendations will support the ongoing Cannabis Act legislative review which will be completed in 2024.
Since the legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada, cannabis producers and retail cannabis stores have struggled with production and demand issues, restrictive government regulations, and competition from an illicit market.
To remove barriers to competition, Competition Bureau Canada recommends:
Review cannabis licensing process and related regulatory compliance costs
Licensing costs and the investment in time required make it difficult for cannabis producers and cannabis retailers to enter the market and remain competitive.
Increase THC limits on cannabis edibles
Currently, 10mg of THC per unit or package is the limit, yet consumers demand more. THC content of edibles purchased from illicit sellers is often much higher.
Ease restrictions on promotion, packaging and labelling of cannabis products
Currently, producers are restricted in how they can promote their products and what information is allowed on packaging. Current, unbranded, generic packaging limits producers’ ability to increase awareness of their brand.
Read the Competition Bureau recommendations.
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