Kahnawà: ke, the Health Canada agreement on cannabis rules could spark further investment by the First Nations

An agreement between a Quebec-based First Nations territory and Health Canada provides for new cannabis regulations that could open up new investments and opportunities for Canada’s indigenous communities.

The Mohawk Council of Kahnawà: ke announced Monday that it had signed a letter of intent with Health Canada that will create a licensing system alongside the territory’s cannabis laws that will allow companies to pursue cannabis cultivation and processing licenses.

Although the First Nations have been in the cannabis industry for some time, their involvement ranges from legal operators to gray market traders. The federal law on cannabis establishes the legal framework within which the provinces and territories are responsible for determining how cannabis is distributed and sold in their jurisdictions. However, this law does not provide sufficient guidance on how First Nations can sell, grow, and process the drug, as it comes under federal oversight that replaces provincial legislation.

While some First Nations-owned cannabis companies have thrived in the Canadian market – Redecan Pharm and AtlantiCann Medical Inc. are two notable examples – much of the industry operates in a thriving gray market. Ontario’s Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, for example, is home to more than three dozen cannabis dispensaries that sell unregulated products, with little enforcement action being taken to contain this market.

Tonya Perron, Ietsénhaienhs or elected head of Kahnawà: ke First Nation, told BNN Bloomberg in an interview that the agreement with Health Canada will allow the territory to soon attract new producers and retailers to the region through a unique dual licensing program.

“It was obvious that there was a need to have a relationship with Health Canada in order for them to share information with our Cannabis Control Board,” said Perron. “Since the licensing applications would run almost in parallel, it made no sense to carry out a development in isolation without one of them knowing what the other is [agency] Did. “

A Health Canada spokesman said the letter of intent could serve as a template to create other licensing protocols for First Nations interested in developing their own cannabis industry.

“Health Canada respects that the Mohawk Council of Kahnawà: ke is putting processes in place and taking a collaborative approach to ensure that cannabis activities in the community are tightly controlled and regulated,” the spokesman said in an email. “This letter of intent helps ensure careful consideration of community processes during Health Canada’s cannabis licensing and regulatory activities.”

The Kahnawà: ke First Nation first drafted their cannabis regulations in December 2018 and almost partnered with Canopy Growth Corp. one to build a large manufacturing facility as well as a processing and packaging room on the territory, but plans later failed. The area south of Montreal on the St. Lawrence Seaway also has no cannabis dispensaries, and all cannabis products that would be sold in Kahnawà: ke are sourced from licensed suppliers rather than gray market suppliers.

“My hope is that for First Nations communities that want to develop something in the direction we paved the way for, these laws do not give up their jurisdiction, they don’t talk about the jurisdiction of coexistence and equality,” Perron said.

BC producers set up industry associations to address province-specific issues

A trio of cannabis producers based in British Columbia announced a new industry association to ensure that the provincial legal cannabis sector has a common voice when negotiating or lobbying with provincial policymakers.

Tantalus Labs, Rubicon Organics Inc. and the Pure Sunfarms subsidiary of Village Farms International Inc. officially launched the BC Cannabis Growers (CCBA) on Thursday. The organization aims at how BC cannabis producers should be on par with other agricultural sectors and receive economic support from the province. It will also advocate for more retail opportunities in the province and provide advice on how to tackle the illegal market.

“At its core it was about ensuring that we have a ‘BC First’ mandate in all provinces,” said Mandesh Dosanjh, Chief Executive Officer of Pure Sunfarms, in a telephone interview. “We want to focus on making sure we are part of the farming community and how we let BC buds thrive and how we can continue to put money into the things that make British Columbia and cannabis synonymous.”

The newly formed organization will offer a fresh perspective on the affairs of the cannabis industry and will be separate from the Cannabis Council of Canada, the national industrial trade group that advocates the sector in Ottawa and other provinces. Dan Sutton, CEO of Tantulus Labs, told BNN Bloomberg that CCBA will be giving provincial members a “fresh start” to make their BC-specific voice heard, and hopes it can promote new regulations that could allow communities to do so to allow smaller, legal cannabis producers to work.

“When big companies get together and create industry associations, they can’t fairly share the insights of companies of all sizes, which may have different priorities,” said Sutton.


Sobeys owner partners with Pathway Health on medical cannabis program

The owner of Canadian grocery stores like Sobeys and Safeway takes its first steps in the medical cannabis field. Empire Co. is partnering with Pathway Health on a new program aimed at educating pharmacists about medical cannabis while providing a management tool that would make it easier to prescribe through Pathway. The medical cannabis program will roll out in all Empire-owned pharmacies in Nova Scotia, followed by a roll-out in Atlantic Canada and the rest of Canada later this year. Wayne Cockburn, president of Pathway Health, told BNN Bloomberg that the partnership with Empire’s pharmacy group precedes possible changes in cannabis regulations that would allow the sale of over-the-counter products containing only cannabidiol (CBD) and not through a regulated or licensed one Retailers.

Pot should be part of the new NAFTA trade deal: Former Mexican President

With Mexico on the verge of legalizing and regulating recreational cannabis, former President Vincente Fox believes that marijuana should be part of the recently revised North American trade pact. “Cannabis has to be part of the trade between the US, Canada and Mexico,” Fox told BNN Bloomberg. “Canada is an open market for cannabis, as is Mexico today. Initially for medical use, in September for recreational use.” Fox, who is on the board of directors at Vancouver-based medical marijuana maker Khiron Life Sciences Corp. Sits, expects that once the U.S. legalizes cannabis, it should be relatively easy to import and export the drug across international borders, which could lead to an interesting supply for the U.S. and Canada.

US Cannabis Sector Presents Generational Wealth Opportunity: Analyst

According to Jefferies analyst Owen Bennett, investing in some of the major US cannabis operators could be a “generational opportunity” for some investors. In a new report that began coverage of seven US cannabis companies, Bennett said that each of those companies should double their share price over the next year due to the potential growth in that space. “While we had legitimate reservations about the introduction of Canadian cannabis over two years ago, we don’t think there is any room for such caution about the US,” said Bennett. That forecast is based on expectations that the U.S. market will grow 14 percent to $ 64 billion by 2030, increased M&A opportunities, and legislative changes that could usher in an influx of institutional investment.

New technologies could help cannabis users find what they are looking for better

Some cannabis companies use artificial intelligence and big data to help consumers find the right product that suits their needs. Bloomberg News reports that companies like Columbia Care and Endocanna Health are turning to technology to appeal to cannabis novices and connoisseurs alike who aim to create products that are similar to personalized or precision medicine based on genetics, lifestyle, or even which one Kind of experience optimized users want to have. While this particular segment of the market is still relatively new, it seems that reducing the unpredictability gap to create a more personalized cannabis experience could set some of these companies apart from others.


Alliance Global Partners analyst Aaron Gray revised its forecast for Canadian recreational cannabis sales this year from $ 4.2 billion to $ 3.8 billion, as longer-term bans have resulted in slower sales growth than expected from us. Gray stressed that Ontario will remain key to Canada’s industry growth as the province continues on track to open 1,000 licensed cannabis retailers by September. This should increase Ontario’s share of the Canadian market from 35 percent to 40 percent, which is in line with the country’s population, while the additional stores should offset a decline in lower sales per store when the province’s retail space is saturated, Gray said. While the illegal market is estimated to make up about half of all cannabis sales in Canada, Gray expects the industry to continue to consolidate as there are now over 700 licensed producers in the market. “We continue to see consolidation as key to creating a streamlined competitive environment in the Canadian market,” he said.

CANNABIS SPOT PRICE: $ 5.52 per gram – This week’s price is up 1.0 percent according to Cannabis Benchmark’s Canada Cannabis Spot Index. At current exchange rates, this is equivalent to US $ 2,014 per pound.


“We know the rules are where they are, maybe we should look at them again.”
– White House press secretary Jen Psaki on whether Olympic cannabis policy should be changed since US runner Sha’Carri Richardson was suspended for testing positive for marijuana.