Why you won’t see vapes on store shelves in Ontario

0
62
January
13,
2020



 
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dosist vaporizer pen

Jesse
Milns/Leafly

Despite

the
introduction
of
2.0
cannabis
products
in
the
country
,
such
as
extracts
and
edibles,
Ontario
consumers
are
unlikely
to
see
any
vaporizer
products
on
store
shelves,
including
cartridges,
batteries,
and
disposable
vapes.

It’s
not
all
that
bad,
though,
because
consumers
are
still
able
to
buy
them.

Cannabis
vaporizers,
however,
fall
under
a
law
that
was
originally
enacted
for
non-cannabis
e-juice
vaporizers,
making
it

unlawful
to
display
any
kind
of
electronic
vaping
device
.

Neither
cannabis
vaporizers,
their
batteries,
nor
oil-containing
cartridges
can
be
displayed,
viewed,
or
handled
by
customers
before
they’re
purchased.

That
means
that
while
licensed
retail
stores
across
Ontario
are
free
to
display
actual
cannabis
and
accessories
that
promote
arguably
unsafe
inhalation
methods,
such
as
bongs
and
pipes,
they
can’t
display
or
let
the
customer
handle
any
part
of
a
vaporizer
before
purchase—whether
for
dried
cannabis
or
pre-packed
with
cannabis
oil.

That

includes

“e-substances”
such
as
the
cartridges
that
contain
cannabis
oil.

Further,
the
law
also
applies
to
the
outer
packaging
of
these
products,
requiring
cannabis
stores
to
treat
them
similar
to
packs
of
tobacco
cigarettes,
which
must
be
hidden
in-store.

That’s
because
of
a
law
prohibiting
the
display
of
e-cigarettes
in
the
province,
one
that
has
its
roots
in

a
2015
legislative
bill

introduced
by
Kathleen
Wynne
that
sought
to
limit
the
promotion
of
e-juice
vapes
to
youth.

Here’s
the
thing:
the
bill
was
never
intended
to
cover
cannabis,
or,
at
the
very
least,
the
debate
in
the
province’s
legislature
at
the
time
appeared
to
solely

fixate

on
the
type
of
vaporizers
that
contain
nicotine
and
e-juice.

But
because
electronic
cigarettes
are
defined
so
broadly
in
the
legislation,
they
captured
and
continue
to
capture
all
cannabis
vapes.

Since
the
law
was
put
into
effect
a
handful
of
years
ago,
headshops
have
been
able
to
“promote”
but
not
display
their
dried
cannabis
vaporizers
for
sale.

Stores
typically
comply
with
the
requirement
by
replacing
the
display
or
products
with
a
document
binder
containing
photos
and
descriptions
of
the
vaporizer
wares
available
for
purchase.


But
as
of
Jan.
1,
2020
,
any
stores
other
than
designated
“specialty
vape
stores”
and
AGCO-licensed
cannabis
retailers
can
only
conduct
any
vaporizer
product
promotions
through
such
a
document
(like
a
binder)
and
are
limited
in
the
size
and
content
of
the
signs
they
can
use
to
advertise
the
products.

Cannabis
retail
stores
are
now
in
the
position
headshops
used
to
find
themselves
in:
they
can
promote
vaporizers
as
they
see
fit,
but
cannot
display
them,
their
packages,
or
let
customers
view
or
handle
them
before
purchase.

That’s
despite
the
fact
that
by
law,
no
one
under
the
age
of
19
can
come
into
a
cannabis
store.
Convenience
stores
and
the
like
do
not
see
this
age-restriction.

On
Jan.
8,
one
of
the
first
days
Ontario
retailers
began
selling
edibles
and
oil
vapes
to
consumers
as
part
of
the
2.0
rollout,
Leafly
visited
cannabis
retail
stores
in
downtown
Toronto
and
saw
at
least
one
licensed
store
openly
display
packages
of
cannabis
oil
vape
cartridges
before
purchase,
and
even
openly
displayed
loose-leaf
510
cartridge
batteries
for
purchase
alongside
them.

In
terms
of
its
dried
cannabis
vaporizers
for
purchase,
the
store
had
the
binder
instead,
available
for
consumers
to
see
pictures
and
stats
of
each
vape.
They
did
not
extend
the
binder
restriction
to
their
cannabis
oil-containing
vape
products.

Another
downtown
Toronto
store
appeared
to
be
in
compliance
the
same
day.

This
one
had
shelf
space
for
the
dried
cannabis
vaporizers
they
sell,
but
displayed
photos
of
each
unit
instead
of
actual
packages.
Cannabis
oil-containing
vapes
were
nowhere
to
be
found
on
the
showroom
floor,
and
customers
had
to
ask
budtenders
about
their
options,
which
would
be
read
out
to
them.

It
doesn’t
make
much
sense
that
cannabis
stores
are
able
to
display
cannabis
as
well
as
other
accessories
such
as
bongs
and
pipes
that
require
harmful
smoking,
but
can’t
even
show
the
packages
of

vaporizers
that
are
arguably
safer
.
And
that’s
on
top
of
the
fact
that
youth
under
19
cannot
legally
enter
cannabis
stores
anyway.

The
provincial
government
could
change
the
law
with
a
simple
regulatory
amendment.
That’s
what
they
did
in
the
first
place
to
exempt
licensed
cannabis
stores
from
vape
“promotions”
prohibitions
but
not
from
the
provisions
that
prohibit
their
display
on
store
shelves
or
pre-purchase
handling.

So
if
you
don’t
see
any
cannabis
vaporizers
on
the
shelves
of
your
local
Ontario
cannabis
store—don’t
fret.


Ask

if
they
have
any
for
sale
before
you
leave
empty-handed,
because
they
just
might
have
some—legally—hidden
from
view.



 
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Harrison Jordan's Bio Image

Harrison
Jordan

Harrison
Jordan
is
a
graduate
of
Osgoode
Hall
Law
School
in
Toronto
and
enjoys
reading
and
writing
about
the
regulatory
affairs
of
cannabis
in
Canada
and
around
the
world.

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