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Ep.186: Dr. Mark Ware & Jeremy Jacob

Cannabis Economy Podcast
Ep.186: Dr. Mark Ware & Jeremy Jacob

Ep.186: Dr. Mark Ware & Jeremy Jacob

Dr. Mark Ware, the Vice Chair of Canada’s Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation discusses the fact that adult-use cannabis legalization is a matter of how not if in Canada. Dr. Ware takes questions from the Lift Cannabis Expo audience which cover everything from the Endocannabinoid system to each of the potential distribution systems the task force is considering. But first Jeremy Jacob give us an on the ground account of the dispensary licensing happening as we speak in Vancouver and Victoria. The province of British Columbia and those aforementioned cities are behaving like geographies you know and love in the US. Jeremy also takes us through his new position as the head of Canadian Association of Medical Cannabis Dispensaries.

Transcript:

Speaker 1: Dr Mark, Ware the vice chair of Canada's taskforce on cannabis legalization and regulation discusses the fact that adult use cannabis legalization as a matter of how not if in Canada, Dr. weird takes questions from the lift cannabis expo audience which cover everything from the endocannabinoid system to each of the potential distribution systems, the task force's considering, but first Jeremy Jacob gives us an on the ground account of the dispensary licensing happening as we speak in Vancouver and Victoria, the province of British Columbia, and those aforementioned cities are behaving like geographies you know and love in the US. Jeremy also takes us through his new position as the head of the Canadian Association of Medical Cannabis dispensaries. Welcome to cannabis economy. I'm your host Seth Adler. Check us out on social with the handle can economy. That's two ends of the word economy. Dr. Mark were preceded by Jeremy Jacobs.

Speaker 2: Oh, there you have it. Oh, okay. Now we've got it. All right. Okay. We go, Jeremy, Jacob, I walk up to you and I say I know you and you say, yeah, you know me. And I said, how do I know you and what did you say last year in Vancouver at the, at the business or the cannabis economy conference. And there we go. My wife and I were lucky enough to attend and had a great time meeting seth and uh, you know, experiencing cannabis from an international perspective. Indeed. What are you doing here in Vancouver? What is, what's your whole thing? Because you're a busy guy keeping really busy these days. So we've got our, our shop, our dispensary, the village which is right near Granville island in the waterfall building on West Second Avenue. We just recently went to the board of variance and one our appeal by a unanimous vote. So we're, we're moving ahead with the licensing process and we're going to become a licensed dispensary in Vancouver, which is amazing.

Speaker 3: It is amazing. There are now three licenses out there. Um, take us through, you know, a lot of what we talk about here is regulations, licensing, legislation, etc. You know, what, what is the city of vancouver doing and how are you, uh, obtaining that license, how, how hard is it to do what you're doing, knowing that you're not just yet.

Speaker 2: Well, You know, the city of vancouver is one of the first major canadian citizen or city to move forward and regulate dispensary's of victoria just passed the regulations, second major city in Canada. And so now both major cities and vancouver are regulating this industry, which is a fabulous thing to see happening. We're a bit ahead of the rest of the country, but we're hoping that they catch up because I think it will be best for patients and, and best for our communities. So the Vancouver process started with proximity to schools and community centers. They have a distance requirement, uh, and then, uh, they have a demerit system where they assess businesses. We were drawn into a clustering process. Uh, we had to prepare and what's the clustering process? Let's just cover that. Okay, good. Uh, well when, when you got dispensary's that are located within 300 meters of each other, that's the city's yardstick, 300 meters.

Speaker 2: So you've got to then go through their point system and if different shops all have the same number of directs, you get drawn into a lottery where they literally, it's a random draw and they pick names and those guys got to proceed. The others are asked to relocate. Interesting. So relocating is a very much like being forced to close your doors. Well you are being forced to close your Georgia somewhere else, but it's not a given that you're going to find another space. Of course not. Yeah. Yeah. So, um, it, it becomes now a pretty important thing to when your variant. So we were, we had a good case. We were able to go to the board, present our case. We were granted our variance based on hardship to our members, our patients, and on the quality of the business we were running.

Speaker 1: Dr Mark, Ware the vice chair of Canada's taskforce on cannabis legalization and regulation discusses the fact that adult use cannabis legalization as a matter of how not if in Canada, Dr. weird takes questions from the lift cannabis expo audience which cover everything from the endocannabinoid system to each of the potential distribution systems, the task force's considering, but first Jeremy Jacob gives us an on the ground account of the dispensary licensing happening as we speak in Vancouver and Victoria, the province of British Columbia, and those aforementioned cities are behaving like geographies you know and love in the US. Jeremy also takes us through his new position as the head of the Canadian Association of Medical Cannabis dispensaries. Welcome to cannabis economy. I'm your host Seth Adler. Check us out on social with the handle can economy. That's two ends of the word economy. Dr. Mark were preceded by Jeremy Jacobs.

Speaker 2: Oh, there you have it. Oh, okay. Now we've got it. All right. Okay. We go, Jeremy, Jacob, I walk up to you and I say I know you and you say, yeah, you know me. And I said, how do I know you and what did you say last year in Vancouver at the, at the business or the cannabis economy conference. And there we go. My wife and I were lucky enough to attend and had a great time meeting seth and uh, you know, experiencing cannabis from an international perspective. Indeed. What are you doing here in Vancouver? What is, what's your whole thing? Because you're a busy guy keeping really busy these days. So we've got our, our shop, our dispensary, the village which is right near Granville island in the waterfall building on West Second Avenue. We just recently went to the board of variance and one our appeal by a unanimous vote. So we're, we're moving ahead with the licensing process and we're going to become a licensed dispensary in Vancouver, which is amazing.

Speaker 3: It is amazing. There are now three licenses out there. Um, take us through, you know, a lot of what we talk about here is regulations, licensing, legislation, etc. You know, what, what is the city of vancouver doing and how are you, uh, obtaining that license, how, how hard is it to do what you're doing, knowing that you're not just yet.

Speaker 2: Well, You know, the city of vancouver is one of the first major canadian citizen or city to move forward and regulate dispensary's of victoria just passed the regulations, second major city in Canada. And so now both major cities and vancouver are regulating this industry, which is a fabulous thing to see happening. We're a bit ahead of the rest of the country, but we're hoping that they catch up because I think it will be best for patients and, and best for our communities. So the Vancouver process started with proximity to schools and community centers. They have a distance requirement, uh, and then, uh, they have a demerit system where they assess businesses. We were drawn into a clustering process. Uh, we had to prepare and what's the clustering process? Let's just cover that. Okay, good. Uh, well when, when you got dispensary's that are located within 300 meters of each other, that's the city's yardstick, 300 meters.

Speaker 2: So you've got to then go through their point system and if different shops all have the same number of directs, you get drawn into a lottery where they literally, it's a random draw and they pick names and those guys got to proceed. The others are asked to relocate. Interesting. So relocating is a very much like being forced to close your doors. Well you are being forced to close your Georgia somewhere else, but it's not a given that you're going to find another space. Of course not. Yeah. Yeah. So, um, it, it becomes now a pretty important thing to when your variant. So we were, we had a good case. We were able to go to the board, present our case. We were granted our variance based on hardship to our members, our patients, and on the quality of the business we were running.

Speaker 3: So how long have you been running that business? Speaking of the patients that you serve?

Speaker 2: We're uh, just reaching our year and a half. My stolen a, so we're a relatively new shop in vancouver, um, you know, we serve a good patient base that we have a lot of people who have found us and appreciate the quality that we're delivering in both in service and products. So, uh, you know, it's, it's been a pretty wild ride so far. Um, but we're happy in this space. This is a, there's a real future here. And uh, a big part of this is inclusivity.

Speaker 3: Sure, yeah. There's a big feature here. I think you mean vancouver because as we have been talking about a dispensary's aren't explicitly in the new regulations

Speaker 2: just yet. So when you think of the future, you know, how do you square that circle as a business owner? Well, vancouver is a unique environment in Canada. We've had 20 years of history with, uh, with different municipal governments are different police chiefs recognizing that dispensing marijuana and a storefront is not a harm to society. It's not a threat to public safety. It's actually a service to the community. Um, so we are happy to be on this leading edge here and uh, we're really hoping to influence government as this process is winding out as it's coming through and, and make sure that, you know, the local economies, the regional economies, the communities and families that are involved in this aren't left behind. There you go. You are providing safe patient access, a abiding by sensible regulations. Yes. You are also abiding by the, uh, the principles of a, of capitalism, you know, it's true market decide.

Speaker 2: So I feel like maybe those are some of the reasons why, uh, you were tapped, jeremy, you were tapped, right? Is that fair to say? I don't know. I don't know about that. Can just about camp cd of course. Oh, can I see the moving on cd? I switched subjects on you. Very subtle, very good. Good momentum change. I'll try to keep up. There We go. Can see the uh, formed in 2011, right. Representing medical dispensaries and their patients. The state of mandates are continuity of access for patients and helping dispensary's proceed, I guess, to the legal environment. Sure. So this is our, our mandate, uh, we've been, uh, effective and getting our message out. We were lucky enough to sit with the round table of the task force. Uh, we just heard from mark where this morning, who's was a tremendous advocate for the industry.

Speaker 2: Um, he's the co chair of the taskforce, so sitting with them, we were able to get our message out for patient access for naturopaths in chinese doctors to be included with was with prescribing authority for our patients to have access to all of the forms of cannabis that the supreme court says they should haVe a, you know, and there was a court case recently where a judge allowed, or sorry, judge failing in the old case, talked about dispensary's being the heart of cannabis access. So the new regs that the government has put up didn't include dispensary's yet, but we're confident that the judge saying heart of right. So we're confident that this message has been heard and were really about messaging heart and, and looking for inclusive regulations that allow dispensaries and existing dispensary's to translate them to the legal market there. He'd go. And as far as the message being heard, you're talking about a wide net, which includes this judge in terms of sitting down

Speaker 3: with dr where you did just share your talking points. What, what was his reaCtion in that meeting? If you share what you can.

Speaker 2: Well, my impression, you know, in the, in the task force was that they are hearing the message, the task force understands, they see, they see the industry as it is. They recognize that, you know, the claims of a widespread organized crime controlling the cannabis industry are not correct, are not substantiated. And uh, we, we know that we were heard there. We, uh, we know that, uh, there was some transformational experiences that were, were experienced by some of the task force members and that's going to really speak loudly. Um, they will report to the federal government and what the federal government does with that information is the big question.

Speaker 3: Yes, of course. When you say transformational experiences, he kind of touched on that. I wanted to get a question in there, but you know, he only had so much time. What makes you say that? Those are powerful words?

Speaker 2: Well, I guess it's boots on the ground, you know, the, the danger or the risk that any government or any regulatory body takes a when they're looking at an industry is failure to assess and really experienced the industry that they're trying to regulate him. So, uh, some of the taskforce members were able to visit the oldest dispensary in Canada to get firsthand experience interacting with patients, looking at the services provided, seeing how information is shared and seeing the compassion and the care that's delivered through the dispensary system. Uh, and, and this was a huge step forward for, for recognizing the good work that's being done.

Speaker 3: That oldest dispensary, bccs, obc, compassionate clubs, dccc, cccs pc's are now. I think it's only three. Three, yeah. I try to say them all. And then it feels like I should say too, it's easier to say the whole thing I find because I always say to vcs pccs pccs. Yeah, it's, it's, but it's. But the bcc ccs. Yeah. It's a tough one. So you know, you're, you're, you're dispensing cannabis, you know, legally now a well on your way to be, um, and you're meeting with the task force, you know, you've got a, the dispensary's behind you. You've got the patients in front of you. You know, we're here in september of 2016. How do you feel this is all going? What, what are your, what's your state of affairs?

Speaker 2: Well, we know that in, in british columbia, in vancouver, victoria, we're operating in a different environment. um, our vision is that the, the service that this environment provides to patients because we see a prescription drug crisis across north America. We see opiate addiction in record numbers. We know that this is an excellent harm reduction tool. Um, we know that this can reduce, um, danger to motorists, reduce domestic violence. I mean, so we're hoping to see a transmission or a translation of what we're doing here to the rest of the country. I want to put you on the spot because there was just an article in the Washington post that stated that, uh, there is now evidence that shows that cannabis use. It actually takes down opiod use. How much can you share? I don't mean to put you on the spot, like I do mean to put you on the spot.

Speaker 2: I'm putting you on the spot. Answer what you can as far as how effectiVe cannabis is and why. Well, there are studies happening on this right now. I mean, we know that mark were and his group, the ccrc has been doing research on pain and opiates and cannabis for since 1999, I believe a cam cd is working with, uh, with academics here in bc on opiate reduction or harm reduction for, for opiod addiction. We're looking at methadone, you know, basically street opiates and we're looking at a ingestible cannabis treatments. Uh, and then the ones I believe that mark was working on were smokable. Um, but what we know is that the have been huge success stories already. The challenge we faced was that all of the evidence is anecdotal and it gets filed away as not being valid. But when you're on the ground and you see the results and you hear the stories, I mean, that speaks very powerfully.

Speaker 2: So getting these research projects underway and getting some real evidence or real data that can be presented, peer reviewed, this was going to be huge. But we know the potential is there. It's just a matter now of verifying it. So interesting. Um, as far as your, a year coming up here, right? We're going into the fourth quarter. There's plenty to be done as we make our way into 2017. What are the big goals that you have first for camp cd and then, you know, maybe even for your own dispensary? Well, the big goals for cam cd is, is to change the conversation. I'm Susan Boyd, uh, another academic and another person sitting on the task force. She presented at the cannabis business week last week and she did a study looking at media and cannabis over the past 15 years. Out of 2,500 articles, about 2,350, or a little bit more than that were negative.

Speaker 2: Talking about organized crime, talking about harms society, fire risks, dangerous product, sophisticated crime groups. Only one was about women involved in the industry. And only 114. We're about mom and pop shops, small growers, artists and growers, medical growers, and all of the negative stories were presented without any evidence. So there's been this ongoing negative media anecdotal, right, exactly right. So it's an unfair application of that rule. Um, you know, and then we talked about the, uh, the alard case while judge failing also throughout the case against organized or case for organized crime prank. So we, uh, we see that meeting to get out the conversation around social justice and cannabis, the conversation about a local economies, communities, these are things that we really need to work on. A public opinion definitely Counts. Um, you know, we have a 100 years of prohibition that's clouding this transition and we really need to change the conversation. Um, As a business. Well, we're uh, you know, we're, we're in that development permit process and uh, you know, businesses have to grow. Yeah. So these are the, these are the plans for the next year.

Speaker 3: That's why my three key principles as we move forward here are safe patient access. Yes. Sensible regulation. Absolutely. And an adherence to the true definition of capitalism.

Speaker 2: Absolutely. I mean, we, uh, we see the need for small business, small businesses, such a big driver in, in Canada, um, you know, and this industry has been held up by small businesses, by activists who were exercising a civil disobedience to unfair laws. Uh, you know, there's been widespread talk of an amnesty for people convicted of criminal charges. So if we're talking about this, and I think this really needs to happen, we also need an amnesty for people running these businesses. They can't be judged, decided, and verdict and nina have a verdict passed on existing cannabis participants through legislation. Uh, you know, we can't see these businesses left out or excluded.

Speaker 3: We need an inclusivity. And that is why what you're, what the city of Vancouver is a, is doing is so important in Washington. We just talked about it on one of the panels. Um, you know, the, the installed medical cannabis market in Washington state in the United States was basically crowded out, you know, and, uh, I'm not parsing my words, but that's, you know, essentially the, the, uh, the overall, uh, picture by licensing dispensary's in vancouver. You are ensuring that that does not happen, at least in this city.

Speaker 2: Yes, we'd, uh, we see the climate in vancouver surviving and continuing on, regardless of what happens in ottawa. This is what's happened to date and we, we foresee this continuing as well as victoria.

Speaker 3: And just let me continue my point though. They were not regulated ever and you are now, right? Exactly. And now your regulated. So no matter who, no matter what happens, you know, you're a regulated business as we move forward, you know,

Speaker 2: for that, I do need to give a shout out to the city of vancouver. Yeah, they took great risks. This is a progressive government and uh, they've, they've basically really cemented the legitimacy of these businesses. So, you know, hats off to the city of vancouver. We're big supporters and uh, we, we need to see more municipalities following suit.

Speaker 3: Let's, uh, uh, uh, absolutely. Um, I'm, I'm with you on that. I'm to ask you the three final

Speaker 2: questions. I'll tell you what they are and then I'll ask you them in order. What has most surprised you in cannabis? What has most surprised you in life and on the soundtrack of your life named one track, one song that's got to be on there. so first things first, what has most surprised you in cannabis? How long have you been in it? A, I've been a cannabis for about two years. Two and a half years. So you're relatively new, relatively new. I do come from another green business. I spent 15 years in renewable energy and there are a lot of parallels there. How so? Well, I, well, there's definitely a sustainability component that's, that needs to be addressed with cannabis production of renewable energy is a, is an industry that people need. The World needs cannabis as an industry that people need in the world needs a.

Speaker 2: So these two industries are maturing on separate paths, but parallel paths. And uh, I, I feel like, you know, with, with prohibition ending and with, uh, with the need for social justice, this was an industry that really resonated for me and my wife and we entered and we were accepted. The community is awesome and we're able to play a role. I think that's a, you know, I'm very grateful to be given this opportunity and responsibility. and so then to go backwards. Is that what has most surprised you in cannabis? The uh, yeah, the, you did ask three questions, didn't do it. It has been surprising. Um, the, uh, the experience so far, the, uh, how engaging it is, how accepting the community is. It's a really great place to be. What's most surprised you in life, chairman jake? Life, you know, life is what you make of it.

Speaker 2: You know, you live once and you use some people stay a course. Some people take a lot of turns a year. One of the guys that takes a lot of turns, right? Yeah. I take a lot of turns and uh, that hasn't really surprised me, but it's, it's, it's a little surprising to watch how things play out and, and to see how positive the world can really be. Can be. When you say life is what you make of it, tell us what you mean. Sounds like you figured something out there. Oh, I don't know that I've done all that. That's a, you know, I'm still figuring stuff out but, but, uh, you know, we have choices to make and you know, you think about those, you meditate on those who prey on those and uh, when you feel convicted, you act on those. And uh, you know, I'm a believer in action and I'm a believer in following my heart and uh, you know, let's see where it takes you.

Speaker 2: There you go. That's pretty good. it's pretty good stuff. Soundtrack of your life. One track, one song that's got to be on their soundtrack. Well, let's see. I want to pay homage to someone. Um, you know, prince, I do love to know him personally, but you know, we a prince, I, I, I, I am still torn up about that. uh, uh, I can't help but think that if the guy was medicating with cannabis, still be here. That's a great point. Even more creative, if that's possible. Well, no, that's, I don't think it's possible. Let's do that. But, uh, so what, that's a great poInt. Song that prince sing. That would apply to your question. Now we've heard purple rain before. It's, it's, it's, it's impossible to get more epic than purple rain, but I don't know if epic is your goal. Well, you know, I'm, I'm struggling with this question, but let's just say prince, the entire catalog soundtrack to my life. Just put anything on you can't go wrong. I'm a. I'm a huge prince fan. Little red corvette, right? Raspberry, you know, it goes good with all of it. Yeah. Jeremy. Jacob, thank you so much. Thank you, sir. All the best.

Speaker 1: This episode is also supported by focus. Focus is working on independent and international standards while offering third party certification for cannabis businesses. The foundation of cannabis unified standards helps build your business into the best it can be. Focus is not a regulatory agency so they don't engage in enforcement. Rather, the organization has in place to help improve operational efficiencies, decrease operating expenses, and ultimately increased profit focus will help you build your business in a sustainable way. Guarding against risk and liability all while protecting your ip. Go to focus standards.org. We had submissions from different organizations who filed and in the course of two months, you have to remember we launched this in end of june. We didn't give people a lot of time end of august to submit their, their report.

Speaker 4: Oh, you aSked the cma or you know, the canadian bar association or one of these big organizations to spend two months oVer the summer to put together a policy paper and submit it. That's a challenge. So the fact that we receive 500, it tells us two things. One, people were ready to have this dialogue. This didn't just come out of nowhere. people have been thinking about this for a long time and, uh, ready with their suggestions. So they organized and put these things together. And the second thing is that they feel that this is an important area for them to be heard. so we're low. We're reading through all of those organizations and this comes from medical organizations, from a law enforcement, from legal societies. The entire spectrum of canadian society has commented. And then we had the in person meetings, the round tables with stakeholders.

Speaker 4: We had the meetings with the provincial and territorial governments. A very, very interesting. Um, one thing I can tell you. So before I, I've, I've finished up with this section, the, uh, we went to Colorado, a group of us went to Washington state to talk to them about how they had implemented legalization. The challenges that they faced, uh, the recommendations. And I have to say that both Washington and Colorado government officials, the business business community, the legal community down there were extremely open about what they felt we should know and they were very willing to share, but they spent a huge amount of time with us saying we this and it, this didn't work. We would love it if you didn't make the same mistakes we made. And one of the, one of those messages was, was make sure that you build the system up early so that it's ready for implementation.

Speaker 4: Um, a lot of that, and we'll come back to the research issue about building a framework. They're starting to produce data now about motor vehicle accidents and about youth and uh, use use in youth, but they didn't have baseline data to compare it to, so they're having a real struggle interpreting what they're now seeing two years later and saying, well, we don't know what it was like two years ago. So we've made all these changes. We're now seeing some data, but we don't quite know whether that's an increase, a decrease or what. So the recommendation coming out of Colorado is very strongly get your baseline information sorted out so that when you make the change, you will begin to see what is happening in the areas of concern. I'll come back To that topic in a second.

Speaker 4: The perspectives that we heard from the list is here you can imagine the kinds of things. I don't think there's an area of canadian civil society that isn't affected by cannabis legalization. This is a, I think for many people who haven't thought this through. This is a very, very deeply enmeshed, uh, issue. So we needed to hear from a lot of people. We still have yet to where there's a youth roundtable coming up at the end of this month, we're putting together an indigenous round table to, to hear from their perspective and the idea is to hear from the full spectrum, uh, you know, you can imagine that we've heard some very passionate appeals, uh, both from people who don't think legalization is a good idea at all. So people who think we should just get away from the whole story and let it, let it go.

Speaker 4: Totally unregulated. Somewhere in the middle we have to find the balance. Um, but we've heard from scientists, we've heard from a policy makers, we've had some very concrete and tangible suggestions as to how we can make this thing work most effectively and also learn as we go that there's a process of building legislation. I like to think of legislation as architecture that we're building a structure that has to be strong enough to do what it's supposed to do, but also flexible enough to change when and if information comes trickling back, that tells us, you know, what you need to adjust, you need to make changes. So this is an issue that we need to be able to address. Um, it's very, very interesting. And being in vancouver I recognize and I don't think it's a big surprise that you are the fact that you're here, you know, a very sophisticated, a very engaged group of people when it comes to cannabis and it's used for medical, for nonmedical purposes, cultivation distribution.

Speaker 4: This is a very advanced thinking happening here in vancouver in many parts of this country that thinking doesn't exist. They are still very new to this idea. You're introducing the concept of bringing in a new substance into communities that don't even have stores. You don't have roads, they have huge problems with mental health already and addictions and they're struggling to cope with what they have. And some of these, especially the northern communities, very, very difficult situations. And so for them thinking about cannabis coming in as a nonmedical seven, it's really a long way from their list of priorities. So we have to work with an enormous range of people who have different perspectives on this issue. And we have to understand that there are communities, there are regions that haven't thought this through as far as you have, um, and we need to also recognize that they need to be educated, they need to understand where we're going.

Speaker 4: Um, industry, we visited a couple of licensed producers. I, I've, in my course of my work, I've known and worked with some of them and you are well aware of some of these systems for many of the task force members. They haven't been inside of a facility that cultivates cannabis for medical purposes. So that was an eye opener for many people. Uh, we visited, uh, uh, the compassionate club here in vancouver, one of our task force members was, I, you know, had I think a life changing moment at that meeting. Uh, and so these are, these are important sessions that took place. It's very hard to explain just how much, what was interesting in Colorado, and I hope there's nobody from Colorado here, but in Colorado we're very keen to show us their grow facilities. And they took us out to their, you know, their, their farms and showed us that this is where we do this and this is where we did with, those of us had visited some of the canadian producers walking out going, yeah, yeah, that's okay, but wait til you see what's happening in Canada, the sophistication and the level of organization that's happening.

Speaker 4: So we were quite proud of where we're coming from. But uh, anyway, so we bursted in and visited many of the licensed producers and uh, and, and while it's not a preoccupation of the government, the idea of cannabis legalization being a big cash cow. And this is where, this is not something that we've been asked to consider. I don't think this is a preoccupation. I think for what we heard from Colorado was be careful not to overestimate how much revenue is going to come back from this perspective. The best that you can hope for is that it covers the cost of actually implementing and running the system that you have. So we've been given some very cautionary messages about expecting this to be a huge mega, billion dollar industry.

Speaker 4: So where are we going in the future? Now we have to analyze all of this. We've had, we've got voices running through our heads of people that we've met. We've got 30,000 submissions that are being coded and we'll have a report in a weeks time from hill and knowlton on what, what happened in, in all of that work. We have to now process all of this. We have to frame the report. We have to decide what, what are the issues that we're agreeing on? Where do we need some more information? And this is where we're at as of right now,

Speaker 4: end of november. We were promised to deliver our report. It's important to point out that that report at that stage won't be publicly available. Uh, the, the task force has been promised and the mandate has been given that the report will be made public. But I think we need to recognize that the people that we're giving this to have to take some time to read it and have to figure out, okay, what are we going to do with this? And how is that eventually the taskforce report will become public, but don't expect it to appear on your inbox on December 1st as I think there'll be a certain period of reflection. So just to caution you on expectations there. And then the final report and legislation should be coming out in the spring of 2017. Again, just to point out, I probably didn't knoW this when I went in, but legislation tabling doesn't mean it becomes legal at that point. The the laws get put forward. Then there's a series of consultations. There will be more opportunities for canadians to contribute and to comment goes through parliamentary committees for the us to go through senate. Depends on the structure, but this could still take further time. So you know, those of us expecting cannabis to be legal in spring of 2017. Need to recognize that the legislation will be tabled then, but there is still a process by which those laws have to be a have to be implemented in an addressed.

Speaker 4: So what I've recognized and I'll. I'll stop soon and take some questions from a personal level, how, how deeply canadians feel. I don't think any of us, it's a surprise that you go to a dinner party, you stand at the bus, you start talking to somebody in the airplane about what you do. Everybody has an opinion on cannabis. There's, there's, this is an issue that touches everyone's lives. Whether yoU're a parent or a or a teenager or a policymaker. Everyone has an opinion and there's an incredible range of these opinions that there's no sort of single vision. I think the single vision that I hear is that we're going in the right direction, that we need to do this and that. There's no question that this is something that we're going to do. The question is how we do it and how do we do it most effectively and most efficiently.

Speaker 4: Education and research that I. This is palpable. I hear things being said that I know are well meant, but ill informed, uh, at meetings and in conversation. I think there's a huge need for us all to take the message out to people that they need to understand what the endocannabinoid system is, what cannabinoids are, how the plant works, what the evidence is. What some of the data are, keep learning as we go. This is a new new experiment for everybody. Um, and so research opportunities, uh, building up a network Canada has a huge network of researchers across the country who are looking at both the basic science of endocannabinoids to policy research on the impacts of different health policies on, on cannabis use and health. So we have an incredible talent base in Canada to be able to address this. And I think as a country, the first oed country to go down this road, we are well poised to be leaders in this area and I'm very.

Speaker 4: And that's something that we all share our perspective on, but we need to work together to do it. We need your input or if we've tried to hear from everybody, we recognize it. It hasn't been possible to get every single person that wanted to be at the table there, but we've tried our best to hear from the perspective that we needed to hear from and we need. We need the ongoing collaboration. We need to recognize that this is a discussion that will continue for years and years to come. This isn't something that's going to land and change tomorrow. This is a, we had generations will be feeling the effects of what we do in the next couple of years. So, um, remember that we need to stay involved and engaged and everyone's watching us. Uh, everywhere I go, Canada is, you know, I go to the states and they're like, isn't it legal in Canada already?

Speaker 4: And I know quite, but everyone's watching peopLe know what we're doing and I think this is a really a really important time for us as canadians to, to step up and, and make this, make this work. So a very exciting. I'm very happy to have had a chance to sort of give you a quick snapshot of what we do. I'm happy to take some questions. Seth, you're going to manage the, uh, the microphone. Um, I'm afraid I have to zip back to toronto because we have a couple of big pain meetings in the early part of next week. So I'll take as many as we can. Squeeze in seth, and I'll let you mc the rest of the stage, but thank you all very much for your attention.

Speaker 5: Absolutely. Let's give mark a hand. Mark. You mentioned, uh, the ecs there at the end of the presentation. You really have spent a tremendous amount of time, uh, you know, in research. Why not share as the vice chair, uh, you know, of the marijuana legalization and regulation a cannabis. Oh, excuse me, um, taskforce, uh, what's your thoughts are on the ucs? What's your thoughts are on that?

Speaker 4: The endoccanabinoid system. My thoughts on the endocannabinoid system, what an amazing discovery. One of the, you know, probably in neuroscience specifically, but in science generally one of the most remarkable findings in the last 20 years about how our bodies operate and what regulates nerve activity, muscle activity, memory, mood pain, uh, emotions, desire. The endOcannabinoid system is plugged into just about every physiological system that we've looked at so far. So the, when I see lists of conditions that patients who use cannabis for and people go, well, how can it possibly be a treatment for alzheimer's and crones disease? And if I could think of a zed, I would. Zika virus. No, it, you know, the full spectrum. Um, there is a rationale for that. There is potentially a reason why this endocannabinoid system exists. The challenge is targeting it effectively. You know, we've got some fairly blunt instruments, thc, incredible molecule, but it hits everything all at once and it's very tough to target that. So we've got pharmaceUtical companies trying to develop specific cannabinoid modulators so far, nothing really earth shattering coming out of that world, but we have to learn how to use and harness that, the plant cannabinoids to interact with this system as effectively as possible. So great potential. Still a lot. Still a lot to learn.

Speaker 5: Okay, excellent. we have a number of questions someone just asked who I am. I'm seth adler. I host cannabis economy which is available on itunes and google play. First question, please state your name and.

Speaker 2: Hi, my name is David Hutchinson. Dr. How are you doing so well. I have a question for you first. Well, first I just want to thank you for what you're doing. I think this is fantastic. My question revolves, if this task force was around, um, sexual reproduction and family health, um, I would hope we wouldn't have a task force full of sexual virgins on the task force as we have a cannabis card, a taskforce. Uh, are you aware how many cannabis virgins we have on the task force and could we encourage them to go to the prime minister's house for meeting?

Speaker 6: Okay.

Speaker 4: That's a great question. So no, we have not had the round table. Do you use cannabis or not question. In fact, in 19 years of research, I've never had that discussion with people. I think we've kind of moved a bit beyond that. You can still have a perspective on this issue whether you're a cannabis user or not, and people who are cannabis users have different perspectives as well. So I don't think it necessarily gives you a particular vision, but no, we haven't had that discussion. I think we're, we're more concerned about the broader picture then then how our personal experiences may affect our judgment. It's a difficult thing to do sometimes, but no we haven't and I'll extend when and if I do get to meet our prime minister will extend the invitation that you would like to

Speaker 3: and virginized people at his house off. See how that goes down. Deflower ice cube set. That's the word I was looking for. Flower makes sense. Dr. Cliff wilshire from the canadian alliance for responsible cannabis production. We've submitted it to your task force that my question pertains to laboratory testing. Will the taskforce be rec making recommendations to with regards to regulating testing. Laboratory is. There's a lot of things happening out in the industry at this present time and there is no monograph on cannabis testing and there is no standardized validated methods. Right,

Speaker 4: so will we be going into the nuts and bolts of specifically what levels should be used for heavy metals and pesticides and so on? Probably not, but will there be recommendations that for quality control purposes, there should be canadians who use cannabis should know what's in the product. They just will be adequately labeled. That's something that I think we are at very, very carefully considering how that gets actually implemented, whether because there are licensed licensed labs already that are currently doing testing of whether there's a need for certification of those labs and, and that I think goes beyond the taskforce mandate, that's much more of an industry wide effort, but I, yes, clearly there's a preoccupation to ensure that what gets out into the commercial landscape has some degree of regulation and that will involve licensed lab testing.

Speaker 3: Okay. We've got a number of questions. I'm going to do this area and then I'll come up to that area. Hillary black, please, uh, state your name and question.

Speaker 7: Dr. We're juSt a quick comment. I want to thank you. I know that you are being run ragged with travel in airplanes and hotels and time zones and that a lot of the members of the taskforce are starting to feel really pooped and you're just getting into the homestretch of your work. So thank you for taking on this tremendous responsibility on our behalf.

Speaker 3: Accelerate, right? Yeah. Thank you. I don't feel sorry for me though. I love every single minute of this. this is an, this is an incredible process, but thank you. Okay. Name and question. Have you bet from quebec and we kind of late in the process. So I'd like to a, you didn't tell anything about quebec this morning. What's going on in quebec and you? Have you been meeting with government? Anyone in quebec?

Speaker 4: Um, we've met. We had to meet a round table meeting with experts in quebec, so a number of academics from sociology for research to addictions, mental health, a number of different perspectives. We had a small meeting and in quebec I think like with many provinces, some of the provincial governments aren't always at the same level ready to engage with this. Quebec has always had a tendency to work much more at the provincial government level directly with the federal government. So we have not had a direct meeting as a task force with the quebec, but that, that, that you shouldn't read anything into that. I think they'll quebec, from what I hear from my colleagues in the secretary out, there are ongoing discussions happening. It's just a difference in the way that the process runs. Quebec is interestingly, it was one of the provinces that we had the lowest response rate for the whole national survey and the survey, the survey, the, uh, the, the consultation was available in english and french.

Speaker 4: It was widely publicized through social media and other networks, but we had a relatively small response. What we've done is look at the response, relatively small. We're still, you know, thousands of people. We looked at the responses from quebec compared them to the responses from the rest of Canada. And for the most part they're are very, very similar. We're not feeling that core backers are responding differently to the rest of Canada on this issue. They perhaps didn't rush to the, uh, to the email to send in the submissions with the same level of enthusiasm that bc did. Uh, but we, we think that so far the, the perceptions are, are similar.

Speaker 7: Okay. Name and question. My name is jessica jelinek. I'm one of the founders of whistler medical marijuana. We have probably about nine out of 10 people that approached me for a prescription. Do sir? What the concern that they cannot get a prescription from the doctor. There's an obvious lack of support from the college of physicians in terms of education. How will that be changing in the next coming years? Great question.

Speaker 4: Yeah, it is. And that's something I've been struggling with as you may know for, for years now is trying to get messaged on education out to the physicians and the healthcare community. I think we just have to keep going. I think that they will be a need for data that these are people who are built to think about research in terms of clinical trials and the more data we can give them, the more likely they are to, uh, to, to listen and to consider this as an option. Um, but it's a very conservative generally profession. So I think that that resistance is also in somewhat reacting to feeling the pressure that people come into their clinic saying, I want cannabis. That's the only thing I'm here for. and if you don't give it to me, I'll go something. And that never goes over well with physicians.

Speaker 4: They want to talk about your pain or your symptoms and how can we manage it and maybe if cannabis as a potential way to getting to better health that rather than being the, the, the end of the game. It's a means rather than an end. I think there's a, there's a lot of work to be done with, with our healthcare professionals. I think it's changing slowly as we've seen this over the last 15 years that health professionals are slow to this, but when they get it, they really embrace it. Um, there was some great surveys out of Colorado that suggested physicians who are most interested in authorizing cannabis were those who had had patients who had responded well, it didn't matter about data and research. It was that they'd had experience with it. And similarly, the physicians who did not want to authorize a major driver of that was because they'd seen bad reactions. They'd seen, you know, problems with cannabis use and that so personal experiences, clinicians drives a great deal of their decision making. It's complex. But, uh, I think it's something we have to just keep, keep building the evidence base. And keep spreading the spreading the word.

Speaker 8: My name's daniel. I'm. My question is about him. Has the task force been talking at all about him or how that's going to change in the regulations will be lifted for farmers who are quite frustrated with them right now? yeah.

Speaker 4: Great question. So yes, we have, we've heard from the canadian hemp trade alliance, it's a preoccupation of mine that hemp as a possible source of cbd right now, the flowers are being left to rot in the fields where it's being harvested. Uh, I don't think that's a, that's a very viable situation to be in a, I can tell you that it's part of the package that we're looking at. Cannabis as a plant covers multiple different strains and hemp is included in there. So in my personal view, iT should be part of the whole discussion. It's certainly come up in multiple discussions how that gets translated into task force reports still remains to be seen, but we've, we've definitely, it's on our radar big time.

Speaker 8: Alright, daymond question. Hi, my name is andrea dobbs and I have a question based on, you said you had gotten a recommendation from Oregon to get your baseline Colorado, sorry, Colorado, to get baseline data. Have you contemplated, have you consIdered doing a pilot program? You said a bc is very sophisticated. This might be the place to run a pilot program, get your baseline data and then roll something out.

Speaker 4: Maybe not in that kind of detail in termS of we've had some suggestions that we should look at possible pilot regions of the country that maybe move things forward faster than others and maybe those could be sort of sentinel regions that's been considered. I think the main thing right now and there's a big meeting coming up in a couple of days. In fact, there are a couple of weeks looking at what should we be measuring and who is in the best position to do this. Obviously we can't implement an entirely new system of data collection for our friends in quebec will be speaking about registries and I know I have a strong feeling about how we monitor health, but we can't impose a massive system of monitoring across the whole country, but there are existing mechanisms that are already in place. So which ones should we use?

Speaker 4: What are the tools that we can use to measure and track this, how do we most effectively implement those and what are the key questions we can't measure everything, what are the key issues and it may well be that in terms of implementing that, it turns out that there are some regions that are more ready to, to implement than others and there will be differences in patterns of use across the country and maybe that will play out in, in some of this. But uh, but yeah, so yes, it's been considered, but I think we have some basic foundational work to do before we get to actually how we sample the country.

Speaker 2: Hello? Dr. Yeah, we're going to have to cut this short because we have a little bit of a. My name is Dr. Barrett. I'm the president of avante rx. Actually answered the gentlemen first. There is five or six laboratories which are approved by health Canada to do cannabis testing in the legal way. These are not environmental lab, these are pharmaceutical labs. And they are. What is your question? No, just to clarify because it's confusing, confusing message sending out it's not true. And those labs appropriate health care that they have to report to health care. That's the first thing for clarification. uh, I've been actually following you up and many years. I respect your research and I do the same bullshit. Recession therapynotes and cannabinoids your task force and I've been talking to Mr. Blair and everybody, it doesn't seem to demonstrate the presence of experts to define, to define quality efficacy and, and, uh, uh, efficacy and testing part of it. So in a way, yes you are looking at the social impact impact, you're looking at the effect of it, but who's very fine. Like this car you're buying, has it been tested? Is this correct or not? That part of it, the task force is totally lacking. Well, let's. Let's see what he says. That's good. A lot of questions, a lot of questions.

Speaker 4: No, I. I hear your question. We do have to move on, but I understand that you're. That you're concerned. There are a lot of Gaps in the task force structure that you've got to let them talk you. You asked a question.

Speaker 2: The question was about the difference between medical and adult use. Thank you so much.

Speaker 4: Okay, so yes, there's expertise on the task force. That's that there are gaps. we can't have a 25 member task force and get anything done with representation and there's always gonna be somebody missing. I think what we can reassure you that we have heard from people who are very, very close to. I'm very involved in the testing and the analysis of cannabinoids in highly respectable research labs, so we have that perspective. We've heard it very well defining recreational and medical. If we had three days to discuss this, we could probably still be arguing about where that line gets drawn. The key thing is that what we're trying to do is to see how and where the medical cannabis program fits into a larger nonmedical regime. And I think that's the challenge for. I don't have time to go into the specifics and I also don't think we've necessarily been able to find that the line yet, but it's something that we're very, very obsessed with trying to do next question after.

Speaker 4: All right, so mark, and you know, what's great about this, you mentioned it, there's a lot of passion, a lot of passion in this area. Um, go ahead. You're, you're, uh, question. Um, so I first off, want to start by saying thank you like everybody else here. I appreciate your efforts that are going into this, the open mindedness that you've kind of approached it with. Um, I alsO wanted to say thanks for understanding that all perspectives are really valid and that throughout this whole process we've had this very confusing regime of it being illegal should it have ever been illegal in this very strange environment that exists for that socially. Um, and I wanted to kind of touch base on what the gentleman over there I'd mentioned with him and seeing if that was something that is being highlY considered. Uh, I'm here with grow legally, which is a resource to help people through the medical side of the paperwork that exists with the aacn pr, but I also am an urban farmer from colona, uh, and using a hand for my practice would be very important, not only for production for people as a nutrient and a vegetable, but also to, to fix nitrogen into the soil to help kind of build diversity in our farms.

Speaker 4: I just wanted to see if that's something that again, is being considered. I feel like mark, You did cover that but you have something. So yeah, it'd be, it'd be we were, we recognize hemps values and we've heard and we aware of this. So yes, we're, we're, um, we're, we're on it. I watched watch the space. Just one.

Speaker 9: No, no, we're good. We're going to the next question. Rapid fire now. Hey, I'm John Carroll. Try quantum consulting is, um, hundreds of commercial, uh, applicants tie down, bogged down with the bureaucratic process with health Canada. So I'm going to be in the application process for over three years. Is there anything that you've been dealing with to help pick up that, that ball and run it through faster with the impending, uh, legalization that, that has not been part of our mandate. Our mandate is trying to look down the road,

Speaker 4: the legalization framework we understand and we've heard from people frustrated by the existing regs and how things are struggling along right now that's not part of our mandate, but we've certainly heard that perspective for many people that are still waiting for license applications. Name and question.

Speaker 10: Thank you for everything that neil magnuson is my name. I'm the only public health safety concerns with cannabis has been prohibition. It's a hundred years of lies that we need to undo. It's not even in the same league as alcohol, tobacco or refined sugar for that matter. Um, the harms of prohibition or continuing until we stop arresting people. Would you consider asking the federal government is suspend the arrests and suspend the criminalization until we have a legalization framework? Mark, you did mention prohibition, but I'll let you answer that question directly.

Speaker 4: Alright. What do you hit? A Sweet spot question. Obviously a lot of people, so we've, we've, we've obviously heard that reflected in multiple different jurisdictions. When we were assembled, it was quite clear to us that we weren't in a position to advise the federal government about making changes now to existing laws. They're going in and and repealing or making things instantly decriminalized. That's not something that we focused on were building something that has to be effective and long lasting so we're not going in and making quick and a quick changes. That's something that I think the government needs to respond to. I think they've tried to respond to that and I Would just deflect you back. I'm not speaking for them, but it's not. Part of our mandate is responding immediately to issues like that on the ground. we understand that they're important. We understand the impact, but we're building a building for a lot longer than than than than people are expecting.

Speaker 10: okay, so next question. Name and question.

Speaker 7: hi, my name is colleen and I'm a total novice here. I'm not a professional. I don't deal with this for years. I'm just total novice because I did research to use it as a medical thing and everybody's talking professional here, but for a consumer for it, for me, for medical reasons, there's nothing out there. All we see when I did research is all talk about t dot, t dot. She all the marketing, all the strains are thc, thc, and not everybody needs a tag. I don't need a t, a t for epilepsy. I need the cbd and the the, the, the, the streets out there. Extremely limited and is the research and studies are going to be more broad instead of just on thc and smoking because I would never smoke the stuff.

Speaker 10: Okay, so there's a couple of questions in their patient perspective, non smoke, cbd strains. What do you have for us?

Speaker 4: You'd be more getting into some fine tuning pieces around medical here. So without going too far off the topic, yes, cbd, we didn't have legally for medical research purposes until relatively recently. It's only in the last couple of years that we've had cbd. So yes, there's a lot of research that's now beginning around it. It takes time to get clinical trials done, but there's a clear recognition that all non psychoactive cannabinoids are important balances between the cannabinoids, the role of terpenoids and flavonoids and how they interact. That's all very, very, very important research as well as non smokes delivery systems. So that's, that's, that's part and parcel of the whole medical discussion.

Speaker 11: All right, excellent. Next question, name and question please. Hi dr. Where I'm enjoy davies. I'm the liberal candidate that stepped back because the press had fun with this study. I suggested they look at it and say I agreed with it. Oh, I'm, I'm this also the city council that started the movement. Tom provincial regulations back in 2009. And fortunately because of my colleague felipe lucas, we got resolutions through ubc. I'm an fcm to decentralize. So my question is medical and I'd like to, and I'd like to meet what you do at some point anyways. It's been an interesting journey. Just to get to you question is the question is you've been dealing with the provincial governments. Has there been any discussion at this point of a federal leadership and stewardship for a national provincial model for patients regulations? Go for it, mark.

Speaker 4: I just had a lot in that question and comment. I'm not sure that I can unpack that quickly. Um, I think that the, the, the basic challenge that the taskforce has is, is trying to work out what's federally, what's in the federal mandate and what's in the provincial mandate and that's something that we were back and forth. Right now it's looking like production is mostly, you know, mostly in the federal mandate and the provincial governments will be more involved in distribution and local, uh, local affairs crudely. That's how it's been in terms of medical. I don't know. We're not there yet in terms of what the. Obviously healthcare is a provincial issue, so if it's part of a multidisciplinary comprehensive care package that would be a provincial just but the supply of the product itself is currently a federal mandate and will likely remain something that the federal government will have a role to play in. Okay. Next question.

Speaker 8: Hello, my name is Joseph Lee. I own a liquor establishment as well as a dispensary. My question is, I know the difference, a difference between using alcohol and marijuana. I know intermingling the two is very unsafe. Now, my question to you, what's your opinion? Right? Yeah, that's my opinion, right, and because I get to deal with people that use alcohol on a regular basis as well as using medical canvas on a regular basis. Question is. The question is, in your opinion, do you think it's safe to mix the two by having a dispensary and alcohol is sold in the same establishment,

Speaker 11: so I guess this is a distribution question mark.

Speaker 4: it is. I, I mentioned already that the discussion about whether cannabis should be sold in establishment that said alcohol or not. This is something that I don't think I'm going to get, not going to give you a personal opinion on. We're Still sorting through, but let me ask you, you own a both. Would you sell both in your. Absolutely not. Okay, so that's a good position that we need to hear the applause. A difficult issue. The applause isn't necessarily for what he's saying, but your question please. Yeah. Hi rob. Rob macentire with the canadian alliance of responsible cannabis producers. There's currently grow is produced. Is operating outside of the the regime. Any indication what the task force's opinion of allowing them to participate in a regulated environment? Well, we've talked about the production and model and right now we're looking at everything from homegrown to small mom and pops to crop growers and brewers.

Speaker 4: I almost said crop growers to the larger outlets and the larger production systems. It's all being looked at now, so those, I mean obviously some of those are outside and and where that fits in, what, how that will fit it. It wouldn't have to wait till we've kind of drawn some lines around it. Do you want to clarify just a quick clarification, existing like people that are producing that may have a criminal record, may have a possession charge, something like that. Are they going to be excluded from participation? I can't give you an answer to that and then I can tell you that that's a. We had a two day meeting recently. Oh, well that's a huge preoccupation and what level of security screening, if any, needs to be in place for people to have big topic. No. Quick answer on that. I'm afraid we don't have a lot of times. So quick questions. Here we go.

Speaker 12: Uh, my name is carly and I worked for a cannabis culture and pot tv. Uh, if you look at the history of cannabis prohibition, there's actually quite a bit of racism and on top of that we still see that there's a lot of lives that are still to this day being destroyed and there's been so many over the course of prohibition through families being torn apart, jobs being lost, facing jail time. I'm just curious if part of the education that you're talking about is going to include that prohibition history that we've actually seen.

Speaker 4: Great questions tell mark and jody, I say hi, mark, another mark. So presumably people that do public education like yourself, that's something that you can start discussing. I mean, are you already are, is it part of a formal curriculum on cannabis education? I think that'S going to vary depending on the purpose and who the professional or who the audience is. Messages for students, messages for a doctor's messages for pharmacists, messages for bud tenders. The education that happens as, as the country evolves is going to vary depending on who the audience is. And I'm sure there are people very interested in. I know when we speak to physicians, it's important that they understand why we're having these discussions now. Why isn't there enough research? Why are these issues company? Um, and I think understanding the history of cannabis prohibition is a crucial part of that. So quick on. So yes. Great.

Speaker 5: Okay. Name and question.

Speaker 7: Hi, I'm kate hurley. I run a dispensary in the downtown east side. I'm right here. Oh, sorry, last year. Thank you. Hi. I'm just wondering if the task force is looking into harm reduction and cannabis as a strategy to take users of hard drugs and give them access to a better quality of life because I'm seeing a lot of users who are being denied a prescription medication for pain management. They're looking to access cannabis. They can't afford it. Social assistance rates haven't raised in over nine years now in british columbia. What are we doing for our most vulnerable members of society? Sure.

Speaker 4: Good. Very good question. There you go. So quick onto is yes, We're aware of the data that's looked at cannabis as a substitution for alcohol, opioids, other prescription medications, injection drug use, cigarettes, it. There's a huge spectrum of reasons people use cannabis instead of other things. We've heard a lot of those perspectives. How that gets rolled into legislation framework is a little trickier because that's a medical decision and indications. We are trying to stimulate research to actually explore that and give people a reason for having data to introduce it. Right now it's. There's a lot of good evidence that it seems to be used in this way, but we don't have enough to go to clinicians and say, you should prescribe this much thc, this much grams of cannabis this many times, this much cbd to and reduce. Again, we're a long way froM having recipes for doing that. But clearly harm reduction is a major, major topic of discussion in the task force

Speaker 5: as far as storefronts are concerned as far as dispensary's, as far as pharmacies that part of the distribution network. Um, you know, what have you heard and where are you at?

Speaker 4: So we've heard from multiple interested parties who wish to be part of the distribution framework. Let me, let me leave it at that from the cam cd organization. Jeremy jacob was one of our task force is speaking about the role of the dispensary's. we've heard from some of the, uh, some of the provincial governments about pharmacy models of distribution for medical. I think it's complex. I think we have to look at what's fascinating is in some parts of the country they're not even starting to think yet about what method. That's a very urban question and you want it to dispense three to one in a pharmacy, right. There are parts of northern manitoba where they haVe neither. It has a post office and so yes, we, we're, we're thinking about that. We're also thinking about a much larger federal program that has to be in place for canadians everywhere and, and you know, that question doesn't always apply in some parts of the country.

Speaker 5: Got it. But at the, at the moment it's still on the date is ongoing discussion. Alright, quick question.

Speaker 7: Hi, my name is manny mcknight. I am mom to a pediatric, a cannabis patient.

Speaker 4: I know your name well mandy. Nice to meet you.

Speaker 7: Nice to meet you as well. So my question well by statement kind of is just that I see a lot in the presentation and hear a lot on the news that we have to protect the youth and keep cannabis out of you, but I just want to put the bug in your ear that there are pediatric patients that can't be forgotten about and there are parents like me across this country who need medical support from an eu. I think are in an amazing position on this task force and I'd like to see in the recommendations to the government to say that cannabis does is a medicine. It does have medical properties because one of the things that I run into with parents and and when they talk to their doctors about treating their children with cannabis is the number one thing that they say to us is the government says the cannabis has no medicinal properties. It's not a medicine, therefore we won't even think about it.

Speaker 4: yeah. What are your thoughts based on the fact that you have a federally regulated medical programs? So very quickly that one of the major reasons why medical cannabis was included in the mandate of the task force was exactly that issue that we recognize that there are children who need access to cannabinoids for medical purposes. So you can't have a system that makes it illegal for somebody over the age of 18 to possess marijuana and then that prohibits your, your, your child from accessing cannabidiol. So there needs to be a separate mechanism for that, for maybe potency issues, for distribution to the breeze system patches. There's a huge read that a lot of reasons why a, a separate or an integrated medical system is needs to be considered. So we recognize that. Um, and I think that the government's been doing a lot of work and here I am going to try to defend them a little bit what what health Canada says is not. So that doesn't have medical value. It's not an approved medicine. So it doesn't have a din number and it's not a. But you know, we have a system of cannabis cultivation. We have an enormous body of research going on that is trying to understand better the medical value of the drug. so I think there's an intuitive knowledge that it has medical value. It's just working out the details.

Speaker 5: Okay. Quick question I gave dr. We're pleasure to meet you. Sam elachi a one. I've got a thousand questions for it, but I know you don't have the time, but what I'm hearing a lot about is cbd cbd cbd. Now I just heard thc thc. So now there is the balance. Now would you agree that you need the whole plan? You can't just separate thc one or adult tonight and delta eight and just use cbd. So what would be the, the. Do you want to throw flavonoids and I don't want the europeans don't know. Let's not get into that. You don't have time. Okay. But my question is how much of the molecule thc, because there's five or six components to thc. It's not just thc. So he's calling on your, uh, history as a researcher. In other words, would we need five percent dtc to make that molecule work? The full power, the full plant, when you aren't extracting it, how much of that percentage would you need? Yep,

Speaker 4: you're right. There's a lot in that question and maybe this isn't the place for me to be able to respond fully, but yeah, it's clear that thc has been around as a single agent molecule for a long time as a prescription medicine and it doesn't work in the same way that patients who take whole plant medicine seems to work. Understanding how that is why that is. I mean there's a lot of stuff going on. They're synthetic. Thc is a is a mirror image of the real plant medicine and then maybe there's subtle differences there so there's a lot to unpack there, but I think recognizing the contributions of the different components in the effectiveness of the therapy is something we now have an opportunity to do now that we have access to quality control products. We can start to unpack all of that.

Speaker 5: Putting the doctor and dr. Mark ware. Thank you. All right. Next question. I just wanted to ask the audience by a show of hands, how many people contributed to the online survey, so you've got about 75 to 80 percent of the audience probably is what I'm looking at. Thank you. Okay, thank you. Alright, go ahead. Alright, mark, I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for all you've done in this industry. I'm not sure if the people here realize that mark is a true pioneer in Canada, in this industry standard in the industry. I'd like to thank you from the bottom of my heart. There you go. Why don't you tell people who you are. My name is lauren gertner and I've been playing this game with mark for a long time. As many people in this room I should say, and I thank you for your kind words, but there are a great many pioneers in this room who deserve equal praise. thank you. All righty. Next question.

Speaker 12: It might be a little premature at this point, but is there any discussion about where the potential revenue is going to go and I would like to see it go into mental health registered. I'm a registered nurse and I'm a city of a citizen of fernie.

Speaker 4: So yeah, you already looking for mature. It's a, it's a preoccupation as to what happens to revenues and how they get reinvested in the regulation, the framework that needs to be set up at. We're not at that point where that kind of discussion has started to happen, but one of the things that's amazed me is hearing from people across the country about how cannabis can be used and we've heard about harm reduction effects, impacts in mental health, positive and negative issues around this, you know, the socio economics and the social determinants of health and the reasons people use cannabis. Sometimes I feel like we come out of meetings thinking that we're going to use cannabis to fix all the problems of society or that we, that we have to fix all of the problems of society before we can. So it's clear that this time this gets get back to my point about how deeply this touches many, many people. Uh, so yeah, clearly there will be a need for more funding for programs and support for a model. How that workS too early to say. All

Speaker 5: right, next question. hi dr. We're a really don't want to lose focus on the medical side of this and I was so thankful when you were chosen the taskforce so I knew they wouldn't get lost in the shuffle. So thank you for being a part of the task force and everything you do. My question is about educating the people who make the policies. It's a big concern when people will make policies, don't even understand cannabis or even more importantly, the medical side of cannabis, uh, are you comfortable with how much knowledge the policymakers have about cannabis and what can we do to make sure they really understand it before they make rules about it? Thank you. Touched on this a little bit question so maybe a little bit more. Reassure you that

Speaker 4: the secretary out. So this is about sort of this, this, this kind of rather fastest name for the group that supports us, right? The second I think of it as a race horse secretary, it was a great famous horse and so I went from me. Secretary means nimble and agile. This group is an amazing group. These are the people who write the policy. These are the people that support the work that we do. They're the ones who we bounce ideas from, I don't think, and the question was asked about cannabis virgins and so on. These people get it. They understand what needs to be done. Uh, I think that there's a recognition that we're not fixing problems that have been sort of thrown at health Canada over the years by, by, by the courts. It's now a chance to build something up from scratch. And I think my feeling is that these guys get it. They know what they're there, what needs to be done. And we've had some very, very engaged discussions. I mean the level of the extent to which cannabis regulation impacts multiple parts of the law is remarkable. And you know, there are people who understand that big vision. I'd like to reassure you that I think they do understand where we're going with this. Uh, the medical is just one small piece of a much larger story, but I think it certainly having been part of the discussions, there's an also an opportunity for us to educate each other.

Speaker 5: Secretary also only lost once to a horse named Upset. Next question.

Speaker 13: Hi there. my name is steve thomas. I work for whistler medical marijuana. So my question is regarding cannabis clinics. They say so we know that there's a practice in the industry where companies are paying for patients. I personally and I think that many others do find that terribly immoral and I was wondering what your thoughts are on that and is there anything that we can do to thwart out that sort of process and level the playing field?

Speaker 4: Yeah, good question. I mean I'm just becoming aware of this. It's outside of the taskforce mandate right at this moment, so I don't want to give you a sort of an official task force line on that. I think that the practice of healthcare needs to be done ethically and morally, and I'm concerned about when money changes hands for patients or for, for promising that certain lps will be provided. I think there are concerns. I think that's really an issue for regulators at the provincial level to be aware of. If you hear these things, what my message has always been, if you're aware of these things, blow the whistle and blow it loud. Tell people that this is happening. It will get up to the people that need to know it. And I've had issues where this has come to my attention. I pass on The, uh, that what I know to people that I know and issues get kicked around and potentially resolved. So we have to hear about these. We need to know what's happening and then those things can be dealt with by the appropriate authorities. Uh, but I've, I've heard about some of this practice and I don't like it either.

Speaker 5: Okay. This has to be the last question I've just been told. Uh, mark, thanks for your time. Uh, what is your last question? Okay. Thank you for letting me ask the last question. I'm good morning. Dr were. Thank you for coming to vancouver on this rainy morning. Um, as you know, I'm working on a project about cannabis and sustainability. So once again, I just want to ask you in front of this audience because I did speak with mark kleiman in Washington about how much Washington took the environment into consideration. So cAn you give us an idea of how much the environment will be taken into consideration when you frame your policy and your.

Speaker 4: Yes, there we go. Okay. So I can tell you quickly that and in our most recent discussions thinking about the guiding principles and the values that we're using to act as the core of what we're building in this legislation, social and environmental responsibility was key to that process. So yes, it's in there.

Speaker 5: Excellent. Just please give another round of applause to dr. Mark. Thank you very much everyone. Have a great day. Enjoy the conference. I wish I could wander the corridors, but thank. Thank you so much for your time, sir. Really appreciate it. All right and there you have dr. Mark ware and jeremy jacob, two Sides of the same coin in one respect and Canada. Obviously they are way ahead of the game in some respects, so very happy to visit the lift expo. Thanks so much to lift team David Brown specifically. Thank you so much to you for listening. Very much appreciated.

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Cannabis Economy is a real-time history of legal cannabis. We chronicle how personal and industry histories have combined to provide our current reality.