Canada’s Competition Bureau pushes for regulatory changes to boost legal cannabis market

The Competition Bureau presents its submission to Health Canada and the Expert Panel in response to their legislative review of the Cannabis Act.

Photo by Crystalweed Cannabis on Unsplash

The Competition Bureau of Canada has submitted its recommendations to Health Canada and the Expert Panel in their legislative review of the Cannabis Act.

The Bureau believes that fostering competition within the cannabis industry could further diminish the illicit market while boosting the legal cannabis sector through increased innovation, choice, and quality for consumers.

After examining the state of competition within the Canadian cannabis sector, the Bureau has put forth three evidence-based proposals designed to promote a more competitive, legal cannabis industry.

Firstly, they recommend a review of the cannabis licensing process and associated regulatory compliance costs, advocating for less intrusive policies where possible.

The second recommendation calls for a re-evaluation and potential adjustment of THC limits on edible cannabis products. This proposal aims to allow legal cannabis producers to meet consumer demand more effectively and compete better with the illicit market.

The Bureau’s final recommendation pertains to easing restrictions on cannabis promotion, packaging, and labelling. Such changes would aid consumers in making informed purchasing decisions, providing cannabis producers with increased flexibility to compete and innovate.

The Competition Bureau acknowledges that these recommendations need careful balancing with other crucial public policy objectives, particularly public health and safety. To achieve this equilibrium, the Bureau is relying on Health Canada and other experts to implement these competition policy considerations while safeguarding the health and safety of Canadians.

This submission by the Competition Bureau marks a step towards fostering a competitive environment within the Canadian cannabis industry, ultimately intended to provide a broader array of choices and improved quality for consumers.

The recommendations, if implemented, could play a significant role in shifting further consumer activity from the illicit to the legal market. The Bureau’s suggestions offer a basis for improved regulatory measures that will allow the industry to innovate and compete more effectively while prioritizing public health and safety.