Article by Jeff Lagerquist,
The Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) was in “blatant violation” of rules set out by the federal government restricting how the drug can be promoted, according to a leading expert on cannabis policy.
Deepak Anand, CEO and co-founder of the cannabis supply and distribution company Materia Ventures, and a renowned industry consultant, took to Twitter on Thursday with a screenshot of the province’s online cannabis store.
The image, which was also captured by Yahoo Finance Canada, shows the title “Leafs By Snoop” appearing above cannabis products.
Snoop Dogg promotes cannabis products under the name Leafs By Snoop. Canadian cannabis giant Canopy Growth Corp. (WEED.TO), a longtime partner of the famous rapper, introduced the LBS branding a day before recreational legalization in Canada last year.
The title on the page has since been changed from “Leafs By Snoop” to “LBS.”
The Cannabis Act, the federal legislation legalizing recreational use in Canada, states that it is “prohibited to promote cannabis or a cannabis accessory or any service related to cannabis . . . by means of a testimonial or endorsement, however displayed or communicated” and “by means of the depiction of a person, character or animal, whether real or fictional.”
“This is a blatant violation of the Cannabis Act by a provincial government,” Anand told Yahoo Canada Finance. “I hope that Health Canada starts to enforce some of these regulations that they have developed.”
Cannabis lawyer Trina Fraser said the issue at hand is what exactly constitutes a “depiction of a person” and “testimonial or endorsement” under s.17(1) of the Cannabis Act.