Article by Kate Robertson, Now Toronto
Legal cannabis marketers are racing to rebrand weed from its stoner, counterculture roots to sell it to mainstream consumers with trendy messaging and slick packaging as legalization looms.
But the risk-averse Canadian government added a few more hurdles for licensed producers (LPs) on April 13 when it announced its intention to place tight restrictions on recreational pot packaging and labelling.
Unlike Colorado and California, where dispensary shelves are filled with brightly coloured packages with dried cannabis flower, concentrates and edibles, in Ontario you can expect a more austere experience at your local government-owned and- operated Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS).
Ontario Cannabis Retail Corporation is opening up supplier applications to all. But only dried flower and oils will be available, and information about each product will be limited to the bare essentials by the feds – the cannabis strain, the percentage of THC and CBD, etc. – and a bright yellow warning to keep it out of reach of children.
LPs are asked to not describe the effects of the product. So if the hope was that OCS budtenders would be able to fill in the blanks left by packaging restrictions for consumers, it’s not looking good.
As anyone who’s explored the easy-to-access grey-market offerings already out there knows, there are thousands of strains of cannabis seeds, which can be bred to create more, each with their own attributes and potential benefits. Throw in the fact that each grower has their own methodology and suddenly a Pink Kush from one place looks and feels a lot different than a Pink Kush from another place. And no review on Leafly is going to help you figure that out.