The medical marijuana country of Canada takes a step backwards this week with the implementation of new rules that end home-growing and establish and delivery-only oligopoly.
On Tuesday, Canada officially banned home-growing and dispensaries while privatizing commercial medical marijuana distribution. Health officials said the changes will create a $1 billion industry within 10 years, Time reports. Critics bemoan the loss of cheap, effective home-growing.
"Instead, starting Tuesday, medical marijuana users, or aspiring users, can send in an application directly to sanctioned corporate producers, along with a doctor’s note (or in some cases, a nurse’s note). If approved, they can place an order, pay the market price (the black market price is about $10 a gram; officials say the medical marijuana price will drop below that within a year), and wait for the secure courier to deliver their weed."
About 40,000 Canadians are registered to use medicinal pot, and that number could grow to 450,000 by 2024.
Meanwhile defiant homegrowers face mandatory six-month jail terms.
“They treat pot like it’s plutonium,” Blair Longley, head of the single-issue Marijuana Party tells TIME.
Celebrity grower and teacher Jorge Cervantes tells us in a recent interview that Canada is going backward as a result of a government controlled by oil money-enriched conservatives. "They got too much oil money and those guys are dictating policy," Cervantes said. "They're in pretty bad shape up in Canada and I'm not at all pelased with the way things are going up there."