Health Canada allows exemption for marijuana testing

With new allowances made for individuals to grow their own marijuana, Health Canada is also opening the door for testing services

While Health Canada has consistently warned the public at large of the dangers of obtaining cannabis from any source outside of the 35 licensed and recognized producers, the authority is relaxing the rules for individual producers.

A new provision entitled Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR) has recently taken effect, allowing individuals with a medical need to apply to Health Canada for the rights to grow their own cannabis. They will only be allowed to grow a limited amount, and they can choose to grow it themselves or have someone else do it for them.

In the interest of giving such individuals the same access to quality control as other users, Health Canada has issued a Section 56 exemption under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. It enables persons registered under the ACMPR, as well as those authorized to produce marijuana through a court injunction, to avail of testing services for dried or fresh marijuana or cannabis oil that they have produced.

“Under no circumstances are individuals permitted to send, or testing facilities permitted to test, cannabis procured from illegal sources. Dispensaries and other such entities are illegal, and it would be inappropriate for the health product regulator to sanction consumer testing of product obtained from these sources,” said Health Canada in a press release.

While concessions are being made for Canadian citizens who desperately need medical marijuana for its palliative effects, the government of Canada still commits to strict regulation of cannabis. According to the statement from Health Canada, a task force is currently consulting Canadians regarding possible next steps in cannabis regulation and legalization.

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