The Bis Weekly News Update – May 26 to June 1

June has begun, and it feels a little more like spring has sprung across most of the country. With it has come some new developments in cannabis, ranging from retail to research.

If you’re enjoying the warm weather and sun (or smoke, sorry Alberta, be safe) stay up to date while you do it with The Bis Weekly News Update for May 26 to June 1, and stay in the know.

Alberta to issue 5 more cannabis retail licences every week

After Alberta’s government placed a temporary hold on the issuing of private cannabis retail licenses to businesses, the province has announced that they are re-opening the process.

According to a press release, Alberta Gaming, Liquor & Cannabis (AGLC) has plans to issue five new licences per week. During the process they will monitor the supply, hoping to prevent over extending the supply of cannabis, and avoiding shortages that led to the memorandum in the first place.

“Due to a steady increase in AGLC’s cannabis supply, the moratorium on accepting new retail licence applications and issuing new retail licences has been lifted,” the regulator wrote in the release. “Lifting the moratorium supports economic development and the success of Alberta’s budding cannabis industry.”

The release also makes it clear that if the stability of inventory takes a “drastic downturn,” the AGLC will put the restriction back into place.

The AGLC is the province’s regulator of legal vice in Alberta. The provincial body is responsible for regulating private retail cannabis, the distribution of cannabis and operation of the province’s online cannabis store.

In November 2018, AGLC CEO Alain Maisonneuve said that only around 20% of the amount ordered by the province had been supplied by licensed producers, and they were unable to keep up with demand.

The regulator says they currently have 473 pending applications for individual storefronts.  Currently, 115 applications have been approved and are awaiting their licence. At the new rate of distribution, it would take 23-weeks for all approved applicants to receive their licenses.

There’s a new pop-up in Toronto trying to bring cannabis growing into the open

McMaster University offering one of the first Canadian cannabis post-secondary programs

Before cannabis was legalized, there was a lot of buzz about how laws for how personal growing would be dictated. In Ontario, a limit of four plants per household was set — the maximum allowed by the Cannabis Act. Since then, some high-minded gardeners have developed even greener thumbs, but for newcomers, it can be a little difficult to know where to get started.

There’s a new pop-up in the city that’s hoping to clear the air when it comes to the knowledge gap around growing cannabis.

Located at 1086 Queen St West, the store sells complete kits that give home growers all the basics they need to get a plant growing well. Complete with step by step instructions that take it from seed to flower, including a series of YouTube videos on the subject.

A complete kit costs $149.99 and can be purchased in-store or online. Seeds do not come included. Each kit contains:

  • 6″ Ontario-handcrafted, lightweight, spun aluminum grow planter
  • 100% organic, custom cannabis live soil
  • Two seed starter discs
  • Seven gallon outdoor grow bag
  • ‘Hyperikon’ Grow light bulb
  • Matte black glass spray bottle
  • Limited edition large ‘Smoking Venus’ tote bag

Canadian medical cannabis company partnering with Harvard medical school

Photo by Louis Reed on Unsplash

Alberta-based medical marijuana company, Atlas Biotechnologies Inc. and its subsidiary Atlas Growers Ltd., is partnering with Harvard University to research the effectiveness of medical marijuana, with a focus on pain and other neurological conditions.

The collaboration between Harvard and the private sector will serve as one of the pillars of the brand-new International Phytomedicines and Medical Cannabis Institute (IPI). The IPI will be based out of Harvard medical school, and is, according to Atlas, one of the largest global efforts in research on medical cannabis and phytomedicines (plant-based traditional medicinal practice).

Along with having opportunities to investigate the quality assurance of phytomedicines that they will supply themselves for pain and other neurological conditions, the company will serve as a guide to the school and supply it with medical cannabis.

“We look forward to building a long-term relationship with Harvard Medical School, with the aim of improving lives by discovering new properties of cannabis for targeted medical applications,” said Atlas President and CEO Sheldon Croome, in a statement.

The International Phytomedicines and Medical Cannabis Institute at Harvard Medical School, which was announced at the 2019 Global Health Catalyst summit, will be focused on developing “evidence-based phytomedicines for global health and economic development,” according to the Harvard University news release.

The research conducted will work to prove the effectiveness of medical cannabis with a parallel goal of strengthening its market appeal.

Lift & Co cannabis trade show is back in Toronto June 6 to 9

Photo by Richard Kidger on Unsplash

One of Canada’s biggest and most highly-anticipated cannabis trade shows is coming to Toronto next weekend.

The Lift & Co. Cannabis Expo is back in the city for its first stop in Toronto since the legalization of adult-use recreational pot. As always, the event will be offering wall to wall opportunities to meet and learn from those working in the new industry.

The event is geared towards everyone from patients to consumers, industry professionals, and investors. It’s set to feature over exhibitors from around the world, informed speakers, as well as representatives from major companies across the country.

There’s also going to be live cooking and growing demos, a TVape lounge, as well as a cannabis career fair, giving you the chance to learn all about this new fast-paced industry.

Vendor and speaker details are available on Lift’s website. But if you’re looking to go for a day or even the whole weekend, there will be plenty to learn and do. This is the biggest cannabis conference to come to downtown and should not be missed.

This year’s panel topics include:

  • Forecasting Canada: The Canadian Consumer Story Told Through Sales and Behavioural Data, a co-presentation by cannabis data leaders Lift & Co. and Headset
  • Medical Cannabis: Where Canada Fits into Cutting-Edge Research, dissecting the most significant research happening in Canada today
  • Retail Rollout: Trends in Cannabis Retail Stores, a look at cross-sector integration as new product trends become available.

The event organizers say over 250 exhibitors and hundreds of speakers will be hosted at the conference, and last year’s Toronto event drew in more than 20,000 visitors alone

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