How To Pick A Cannabis Consultant Or Lawyer For Your AGCO Retail Dispensary In The Greater Toronto Area Or Ontario

CANADA:  The regulation of cannabis in Canada has come a long way to where it is today. Since the federal legalization took place, it has proven to be an area that is performing relatively well. However, it’s still a sector that’s highly regulated; in essence, a prospective business owner has to go through stringent processes before being granted a license to operate.

To increase your chances of being granted a license, it’s always recommended that a person seeks legal and consultancy assistance. There are several cannabis consultants in the Greater Toronto and Ontario. Choosing one can be the difference between success and failure.

The purpose of a cannabis consultant is to provide their clients with vital information especially in the areas that they are lacking in knowledge. Besides the horticultural aspect of consultancy, a good adviser should also educate potential business owners about the facility design.

The following is a detailed guide that’ll help you with finding the right cannabis lawyer or consultant:

Things to Consider When Choosing a Cannabis Consultant or Lawyer

Given the popularity of the cannabis industry, it’s quite unfortunate to learn that multiple unscrupulous firms have cropped up claiming to be cannabis consultants. To make matters worse, many naive business owners have fallen prey to them. Here’s how you can avoid such pitfalls and pick the right adviser.

Probing the Advisers

When you’ll be looking for the right adviser, it’s very important to thoroughly vet the person. If you notice that a prospective consultant is quite reserved or hesitant in giving you answers, that may be an indication that he or she isn’t worth hiring. Consultants are vastly knowledgeable and are very quick to offer advice. Some of the questions you shouldn’t fail to ask include the number of years they’ve been in the field, relevant credentials and certification, their current and past clients, and the amount of time he or she will dedicate to you.\

Watch out for the red flags

As you search for the most qualified adviser who’d help you, it’s also good to be on the lookout to avoid anything that can potentially ruin your chances of getting a license. Some examples of red flags you should watch out for include; being asked for equity, a consultant who’s reluctant to track time, not being treated as a partner, and avoiding to answer your questions adequately.

Identify your Needs

Before you seek consultancy services, you should first and foremost understand the specific needs of your business venture. This will help you in determining the particular type of consulting you require as well as providing you with a clear picture of the amount you’ll be willing to pay for that service. Due to the complexity of this industry, this area tends to be a field that has many consulting firms. Thus, you should only go for a person who specializes in a particular niche.

On many occasions, business owners find themselves requiring more than one consultancy service. Even though it may appear costly, the person seeking the services will end up gaining a lot in the long run.

Understanding the Consultancy Process

When it comes to cannabis consultancy, different business owners usually have varying needs. The consultancy process tends to follow three fundamental stages.

Problem definition

This stage usually seeks to identify the particular need of the client and how he or she can work along with the consultant to facilitate a successful outcome.

Business Licensing

Apart from facing other startup challenges, acquiring a cannabis license is usually a difficult hurdle on its own. This step involves acquiring the right license for the client’s business.

Compliance 

For your business to remain operational, it should always comply with the set guidelines in the industry. The Consultant’s work at this stage would be to ensure that your business remains compliant and attains profitability

Conclusion

Getting the help of a cannabis adviser or lawyer is a crucial step before anyone begins operating a cannabis retail dispensary. For any consultancy services to work perfectly, there has to be a positive relationship between both parties. Honesty and timely communication can help in cementing a solid relationship. If you’re searching for the appropriate adviser in Greater Toronto or Ontario, be sure the following the guidelines provided above.

FSD Pharma Begins Construction Of Heritage Museum & Flagship Dispensary In Ontario

CANADA: FSD Pharma Inc. announced that construction has commenced of its heritage museum and flagship dispensary at the former Kraft plant in Cobourg, Ontario, headquarters of its wholly-owned subsidiary FV Pharma Inc.

Local politicians and media will be in attendance at the ribbon-cutting ceremony on October 9, 2018 at 11:30 EST in Cobourg at the Head office located at 520 William Street. Honoured invited guests include Cobourg Mayor Gil Brocanier who will be in attendance and the Hon. Kim Rudd, MP for Northumberland and Peterborough South who is expected to attend. All national media are welcome with media credentials.

Thomas Fairfull, President and CEO of FSD Pharma stated, “We welcome politicians and media to this momentous event where we begin converting the historic Certo building located at the former Kraft plant into a heritage museum and on-site dispensary. The Certo building is an important part of Cobourg’s history and the Company intends to preserve this unique building.”

The former Certo building was the first in the British Empire to make commercial grade pectin that was sold under the product name of “Certo” and is estimated at over 100 years old. The property is listed on the municipal heritage register as a property of cultural heritage value. Last year, Cobourg City Council endorsed several recommendations, including the designation of the Certo building under the Ontario Heritage Act as a building of cultural heritage value.

“Today, we also begin construction of our flagship on-site dispensary, an important component of our business plan as we sit on the brink of adult-use legalization on October 17, 2018. The Company is preparing in earnest for sales of our high quality, indoor grown and pharmaceutical grade product, which will be available for sale shortly,” continued Fairfull.

 

FSD Pharma Inks Saskatchewan Wholesale Supply MOU With High Tide Ventures

CANADA: FSD Pharma this week announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, FV Pharma Inc. has entered into a non-binding memorandum of understanding with High Tide Ventures Inc. (“High Tide”) dated July 18, 2018 to supply the Saskatchewan market on a wholesale basis with up to 5,000 kilograms of cannabis products over the next year when available. FSD Pharma is working together with Auxly (formerly Cannabis Wheaton Income Corp.) to achieve its mission to develop the largest hydroponic indoor cannabis cultivation facility in Cobourg, Ontario, Canada.

FSD PHARMA ENTERS INTO SASKATCHEWAN WHOLESALE SUPPLY MOU OF UP TO 5,000 KILOGRAMS WITH HIGH TIDE VENTURES

FSD PHARMA ENTERS INTO SASKATCHEWAN WHOLESALE SUPPLY MOU OF UP TO 5,000 KILOGRAMS WITH HIGH TIDE VENTURES

High Tide is in the process of becoming a licensed wholesaler of cannabis products in the province of Saskatchewan. Thomas Fairfull, President and CEO of FSD Pharma, stated, “This non-binding MOU is the result of FSD Pharma’s focus on growing high quality indoor hydroponic cannabis, which I expect will yield more opportunities to build on our relationship in the near future.” Raj Grover, President & Chief Executive Officer of High Tide, added, “High Tide has achieved an important strategic milestone by securing its first wholesale business partner for Saskatchewan and the province’s 51 retail cannabis outlets. It is very important to us to be able to provide the highest quality of indoor grown cannabis. We want to ensure that High Tide is able to offer consumers a variety of options that they actually enjoy.”

High Tide is focused on becoming a strong downstream player in the legal recreational cannabis industry in Canada. Through its subsidiaries, High Tide has also applied for over 30 retail cannabis licenses and associated development permits in Alberta, with applications in British Columbia expected to be submitted shortly.

 

High Park Farms Begins Cannabis Cultivation in Ontario

CANADA: High Park Farms has announced that cannabis cultivation has begun at its state-of-the-art greenhouse in Enniskillen, Ontario following the successful arrival of thousands of live cannabis plants from Nanaimo, British Columbia. The arrival of the plants marks a major milestone for High Park as the company rapidly scales its operations in anticipation of the historic legalization of cannabis for adult-use in Canada expected to occur later this year.

“British Columbia is known around the world for its rich cannabis culture and the quality of its cannabis genetics,” said Adine Fabiani-Carter, Chief Marketing Officer at High Park. “We’re proud to bring high-quality cannabis genetics from British Columbia to Ontario to be ready for adult-use legalization anticipated later this year.”

The plant transfer, which occurred over the course of 36 hours last week, took thousands of healthy cannabis plants on a journey of more than 4,100 kilometres from Vancouver Island, British Columbia to Lambton County, Ontario. A carefully choreographed process involving a team of drivers, pilots, growers, production managers and security personnel ensured the health and safety of the plants. The plants rode an early-morning ferry from Nanaimo to Horseshoe Bay, then departed from Vancouver International Airport on a chartered, cargo-configured, Boeing 757. Upon landing at Hamilton International Airport, the plants made the final leg of the trip to High Park Farms in Enniskillen via climate-controlled tractor-trailers.

High Park Farms, which is anticipated to represent an investment of up to $30 million, received its federal license from Health Canada to cultivate cannabis under the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR) on April 13, 2018. The facility features 13 acres of greenhouse on 100 acres of property. Its first harvest is anticipated in June. In accordance with the Cannabis Act introduced in Canadian parliament in April 2017, High Park Farms anticipates that its ACMPR cultivation license will provide the company the ability to supply the adult-use cannabis market in Canada once the legislation is adopted.

 

Ontario Moves Ahead With Plan To License Cannabis Lounges

CANADA: Initially, the province of Ontario – Canada’s most populated area – planned to institute a categorical ban on public smoking which would have restricted consumption to homes. However, that proposal harbored various shortcomings, including exposing children to second-hand smoke.

Additionally, people living in buildings that ban smoking would have no place to smoke.

Trina Fraser, an Ottawa Lawyer who specializes in cannabis trade laws believes that such restrictive regulations would force people to smoke in undesirable places like their cars.

The proposed cannabis lounges could lag behind legalization legislation, which is expected by July.

The Ontario regulations would have provisions for both public lounges and smoking spaces in apartment and some business buildings. Additionally, pot smokers would be allowed to smoke in cigarette smoking zones, and other forms of marijuana, including edible varieties would be allowed in all hotel rooms.

If passed, marijuana producers, as well as sellers of smoking devices stand to benefit significantly, with more people finding it comfortable to smoke marijuana in an acceptable setting.

Tourist populations would also find it easier to sample Canadian pot.

 

Tilray Announces Second Facility To Meet Rapidly Growing Global Demand For Medical Cannabis

CANADA: Tilray Canada Ltd., a global leader in medical cannabis research and production, has announced that it will invest, through an affiliated entity, up to $30 million in a second cultivation and processing facility located in Enniskillen, Ontario. The two facilities will generate a combined production capacity of up to 51 metric tonnes per year, which will position Tilray to respond to significant projected growth in demand for its medical cannabis products in Canada as well as the European Union, Australia, New Zealand and Latin America.

“This is another strategic milestone for Tilray as we aim to build the world’s most trusted and admired medical cannabis brand,” said Brendan Kennedy, Chief Executive Officer of Tilray. “As governments around the world increase access to medical cannabis, and as Canada prepares to legalize and regulate cannabis for responsible adult consumption, this investment will enable us to serve the rapidly expanding global market for quality-controlled, rigorously tested medical cannabis products.”

Expanded Capacity to Accelerate Tilray’s Global Expansion Plans

Tilray was the first licensed producer to legally export medical cannabis products from North America to the European Union, Australia, New Zealand and South America. Currently, Tilray products – including pharmaceutical-grade whole flower, oils, and capsules – are available in 6 countries spanning 4 continents. The company is aggressively expanding international distribution of its products with plans to export to 5 additional countries by the end of 2017.

In 2016, Tilray also became the first medical cannabis licensed producer in North America to be GMP-certified in accordance with the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards. GMP certification is the most rigorous standard that manufacturers of medical products must meet in their production processes, and it provides regulators and health care providers in countries new to medical cannabis with certainty that Tilray products are a safe and smart choice.

Tilray’s Best-in-Class Production Facilities

Tilray currently owns and operates one of the world’s most sophisticated, federally-licensed medical cannabis cultivation and processing facilities, located in Nanaimo, British Columbia. The flagship $30 million facility, which opened in 2014 and achieved EU GMP certification in 2016, has the capacity to produce 8 metric tonnes of medical cannabis per year. It also houses a state-of-the-art extraction and R&D centre focused on processing raw flower into pharmaceutical-grade products like oils and capsules, in addition to developing new methods of delivery that provide alternatives to smoking.

The company’s second facility being announced today is located in Enniskillen, Ontario on a 100-acre property with 13 acres of existing greenhouse space. The property is currently producing peppers for the Enniskillen Pepper Company. Tilray has submitted an application to Health Canada to receive a federal license to produce medical cannabis on the Enniskillen site. In the first phase of the project, the property will house a 10-acre cannabis greenhouse facility and approximately 40,000 square feet of processing space. The facility marks a total capital investment of up to $30 million and, together with Tilray’s Nanaimo facility, is expected to generate a combined production capacity of as much as 51 metric tonnes by the end of 2018. In future phases to be completed over the next several years, the first 10 acres of Tilray’s new greenhouse in Enniskillen will be expanded up to 30 acres.

Tilray chose Enniskillen because the township is strategically located and has a strong workforce of qualified, skilled agricultural professionals. The Enniskillen facility is expected to hire approximately 50 people to work in operations, production, cultivation and facilities through the end of 2018. Over the next five years, the project is expected to create 200 to 250 full-time jobs in the region.

 

Medical Marijuana Workers Fight For Labor Rights At Ontario Agriculture Tribunal

CANADA: The struggle to win union rights for medical cannabis workers in Canada has entered a new chapter, with the commencement of hearings at Ontario’s Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs Appeal Tribunal (AFRAA Tribunal) for workers at MedReleaf in Markham, Ontario. The Markham-based MedReleaf operates an industrial facility with approximately 50 employees who grow, trim, harvest, and package medical grade marijuana.

The MedReleaf workers have been trying to join UFCW Canada (United Food and Commercial Workers union) for nearly two years, and are now fighting for their right to unionize and bargain collectively at the tribunal. The MedReleaf struggle first began in May 2015, when workers at the facility contacted UFCW Canada in order to join the union. With a majority of MedReleaf workers having signed union cards, UFCW Canada applied for certification at both the provincial and federal labour boards.

Not long after the applications were filed, the federal labour board ruled that it did not have jurisdiction over the matter, despite the fact that medical cannabis production is tightly regulated by Health Canada and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

Within days of the federal ruling, MedReleaf started terminating the leaders of the union organizing campaign at its facility. UFCW Canada in turn filed charges of unfair labour practices against the company at the Ontario Labour Relations Board. Before the hearings into the charges began, the provincial labour board deemed the workers to be agriculture workers in December 2015, despite the factory-like dynamic of many medical marijuana facilities.

Since agriculture workers in Ontario are excluded from the provincial Labour Relations Act, the Board’s ruling effectively stripped cannabis workers of the right to unionize and bargain collectively. Soon after the provincial ruling, MedReleaf terminated even more union supporters. To date, 11 union supporters have been terminated by MedReleaf, including all of the leaders who started the organizing campaign.

Having been rejected by both the federal and provincial labour boards, the only avenue left for MedReleaf workers is the AFRAA Tribunal. The tribunal is available to any agricultural worker whose right to freedom of association has been violated. However, this is only the second time in history that the concerns of workers seeking to bargain collectively have been heard by the tribunal.

Now, nearly two years after the union drive at MedReleaf, the tribunal has commenced twelve days of hearings. The first three days of hearings commenced February 7, and the tribunal will reconvene March 1.

Should the tribunal rule in favour of the union, UFCW Canada hopes that the workers will be reinstated with full back-pay, and that the company will be legally obligated to negotiate a collective agreement with the union. It is a long and monumental struggle that will have implications for workers across Canada’s burgeoning cannabis sector.

“This is about achieving justice for all cannabis workers,” says Philip Manorath, one of the leading inside organizers at MedReleaf and the first worker to be terminated following the organizing campaign. “There is no reason why cannabis workers should be denied the right to form a union and bargain collectively, when every other worker in Ontario has the right to do so.”

Mississauga Moves To Regulate Marijuana

CANADA:  Mississauga is set to become the first city in Canada to licence and regulate the production of medical marijuana.

“The federal government legalized these operations, but we’re the ones eventually responsible for where they’re located and the enforcement of them,” said Councillor Jim Tovey, after a committee vote on a new bylaw that passed Wednesday. Final approval will is expected to come when from full council by the end of March.

A staff report dated Feb. 18, 2015, indicated that no other city in Canada has made such a move, following the federal government’s transition in 2013 and 2014 to licence the private production of legal medical marihuana.

The report states that a Mississauga bylaw will guarantee that private medical marijuana production in the city will conform to building, fire and safety codes. Once the bylaw is in place, inspectors will legally be able to enter facilities to make sure all regulations are being followed.