Article by Daniel Otis, CTV News
When marijuana becomes legal for recreational use next year, nearly half of Canadians will want to try edible marijuana products, a new study says, even though it remains unlikely that such products will be commercially available.
“Curiosity seems to be driving consumers to want to try a food product, an edible, and the number one choice is bakery goods,” Dr. Sylvain Charlebois, the study’s lead author, told CTVNews.ca.
Charlebois, a professor of food distribution and policy and the dean of Dalhousie University’s Faculty of Management, penned ‘Cannabis-infused food and Canadian consumers’ willingness to consider recreational marijuana as a food ingredient’ with Dr. Simon Somogyi, an associate professor at Dalhousie’s Faculty of Agriculture.
In a survey of 1,087 people, the researchers found that 46 per cent of Canadians would try cannabis-infused food products such as baked goods, oils and spices if they were commercially available. Thirty-nine per cent said that they would be willing to try such products in a restaurant. Only 20 per cent said they feel knowledgeable enough to try making marijuana-infused foods at home.
“I think there’s a huge void around public education with marijuana,” Charlebois said. “As a group of researchers, we’re very concerned that we’re just not having this discussion right now around edibles.”
The federal government plans to legalize the recreational use of marijuana by July 1, 2018. But in its current form, Bill C-45, also known as the Cannabis Act, does not include the legalization of edible products, such as marijuana-infused baked goods. The federal government has said that it plans to deal with such products, which are commonly known as “edibles,” at a later date, but that only dried cannabis, fresh cannabis, cannabis plants, cannabis seeds and cannabis oil will be legally available for purchase next year. Of these products, only cannabis oil can easily be consumed without smoking.