Craft Cannabis Growers Prepare for "Second Wave" of Legalization

New legal cannabis regulations announced this week are planting the seeds for a more "diverse, eco-friendly" industry

As regulations were released Wednesday outlining the finer details of what cannabis legalization will look like, craft cannabis growers are preparing for what they are calling the “second wave” of legalization.

The Liberals’ Cannabis Act, Bill C-45, received Royal Assent last week, and will become law on October 17. To be included in the new licensing regime announced at a press conference this morning are regulations opening up the recreational cannabis market to small producers, including outdoor farms. 

Health Canada’s regulations will allow licensing of micro producers (with a maximum canopy of 200 square metres), and micro processors (of up to 600 kilograms per year), as well as cannabis nurseries. Additionally, there’s no limit to the number of micro licenses one person can hold, opening the door to cannabis co-ops across the country. 

While it’s still unclear whether micro producers will be permitted farm gate sales, those with a micro-processing licence will be able to wholesale to provincial control boards or another Health Canada approved processor.

Mathew Columbro, president of cannabis consultancy Vindica, says, “The second wave of legalization will be hugely disruptive for licensed producers, allowing the existing mature craft cannabis market to finally be licensed.”

Also, while the government's stated goal is to eliminate organized crime in cannabis, they’re not completely eliminating those with past criminal convictions from participating in the legal cannabis market. But officers and directors of companies, as well as master growers, must receive security clearance from the feds.

Columbro sat down with NOW to offer some insights into the new regs.

Vindica Co