Article by David Brown, Lift News
DOJA Cannabis, a small licensed medical cannabis producer in Kelowna BC, this week announced the successful importation of cannabis seeds from overseas.
With this import,DOJA becomes one of only a handful of licensed producers to have recently successfully navigated the legal import process for genetics from overseas.
BC’s Tantalus Labs also underwent a similar process earlier this year, and Vancouver Island producer United Greeneries imported 1 kg of seeds in December 2016. In 2015, Bedrocan made the first international import of live genetics.
Other producers like Tweed and 7Acres have been developing relationships with seed companies like DNA Genetics and Dinafem.
The process of importing seeds is a challenge for any licensed producer, with extensive paperwork and strict legal limitations on where and who you can source genetics form.
Ryan Foreman, the president and founder of DOJA, says the process took him several months to navigate, from locating a company able to legally export the product, to working through all the necessary paperwork with Health Canada.
“You have to apply with Health Canada,” explains Foreman, “and then prove that the group you are ordering from are allowed to export, prove that they have a license or seeds that were acquired during a time when they did have a license to conduct activity with cannabis seeds.”
Lift spoke with Foreman about the import as he waited at customs at the Vancouver airport to provide his paperwork to show the seeds are indeed legal. The founder says there are three forms that Health Canada provides to import the seeds: one to the importer (in this case, DOJA), one to the exporter, and one that accompanies the package. Because the paperwork accompanying the package was inside the package itself, Foreman says he had to go to the Vancouver airport to show his paperwork to customs officers, to approve the import.
From there, the seeds will make their way to DOJA’s Kelowna facility, where they plan on beginning a breeding process to select the best strains and phenotypes.
While he’s protective of a lot of details around how many seeds and of what varieties, Foreman says they imported more than a dozen different varieties, and they are expecting to begin growing them out soon.