How to get licenced to make and serve edibles in Canada

Published Jan 21, 2020 02:00 p.m. ET
iStock / Olena Bondarenko

The market for edibles is booming like never before, with many people wanting to jump on board to create some fantastic cannabis-infused edible products. This market is going to have us begging for more, and the question some people have is how the average Joe can get a piece of the pie and have the legality backing them to create their own infused goodies and maybe make a buck or two in the process.

Some of the necessary laws still are in a bit of a grey area. We need to be careful when making anything that will be sold to the public as some strict regulations need to be followed in the eyes of Health Canada. So, let us look at some of the rules of the FDA so that you can be sure to have all your ducks in a row and avoid any legal issues with laws that you may not know are in place.

All beer liquor and wine must have their products tested regularly by the LCBO. The reason being that they are intoxicants, so levels of alcohol must stay within the realm of the legal limits. By doing this, they are ensuring public safety. In October of 2019, new regulations came into effect, allowing the sale of edibles, extracts and topicals. Authorized distributors and retailers finally have access to sell the three new legal classifications legally!

Regulations

Food safety regulations are of the most important. Cannabis-infused edibles are considered cannabis in the eyes of the law, so edibles will be regulated strictly under the Cannabis ACT. With these regulations in place, they will address public safety concerning cross-contamination and foodborne illness. Cannabis-infused products, as well as the ingredients used to make them will also be subject to the strict guidelines to avoid foodborne illness and cross-contamination policies.

Those rules will also include a prohibition on any sale of products requiring refrigeration and or freezing along with barring any products that require the use of raw meat fish and poultry as an ingredient. On top of the prohibition on raw meat and or refrigerated or frozen edible cannabis-infused products, the following products also banned:

  • Alcohol beverages infused with cannabis
  • Any cannabis products containing tobacco or nicotine
  • Cannabis products containing caffeine
  • Any cannabis products that may appeal to children

Health Canada will also uphold strict packaging and labelling to avoid products that may be appealing to children.

  • The product must have a label /health warning listing the THC/ CBD content
  • Limited use of colours and logos
  • Must have child-resistant packaging

How to make edibles for the public

Restaurants won't be allowed to sell any cannabis-infused foods or products. A manufacturer of cannabis products will not be allowed to be in the same building as food products, and cannabis-infused products should be manufactured using sanitary conditions that meet Health Canadas particular security requirements.

Only those with an appropriate licence under the Cannabis ACT will have the authorization to manufacture cannabis-infused edible products for sale. Federal license holders are not permitted to sell any non-medicinal cannabis products to the public directly, and appropriate approval must be obtained for any restaurant, retailer, or commercial kitchens if they wish to sell marijuana-infused products.

Penalties for non-compliance

There are several tools used to enforce the Cannabis ACT for non-compliance. Those instruments will serve to be sure the appropriate measures will be applied in cases of non-compliance with the Cannabis ACT. The safety and health of the public are stringent in any food industry.

The great thing is that we can acquire licensing to make and serve cannabis-infused edibles, and that is a great accomplishment considering this wasn’t even something we would have dreamed of years ago! Rules and regulations will always be set in strict form for anything new coming to market as the government needs to protect themselves legally as well as the producers do.

We are very excited to have the new laws in place to make and sell edibles, and this is a great time to be a part of the marijuana movement! In time the requirements for edibles will be adjusted as this is still new for the food industry. Looking forward, we have a great year ahead with some excellent new edible products that will be being made available to the public. So, let us embrace the fact that the marijuana movement is making significant accomplishments all over the globe! If you want to know more about licensing for edibles, please check out the link below.

https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/drugs-medication/cannabis/laws-regulations/compliance-enforcement-policy-cannabis-act/policy.html

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