Top questions about the new product types: edibles, extracts, and topicals

Top questions about the new product types: edibles, extracts, and topicals

On October 17, 2019, the federal government amended the Cannabis Act to allow for the legal production and sale of non-medical cannabis in the form of edibles, extracts, and topicals. While these categories are now legal, it will take some time before the new products become available for purchase.  Until then, read on for answers to the questions we’re hearing most often from customers inquiring about the new categories.  

What are the new categories?

New categories of non-medical cannabis that were recently legalized include edible cannabis, for eating or drinking, cannabis extracts, for ingesting (e.g. oils) or inhaling (e.g. vape cartridges), and topicals, for applying to skin, hair, and nails.

When will the new categories be available?

It’s expected that a limited selection of products will be made available starting from mid-December. Federally licensed producers (LPs) are required to provide 60 days’ notice to Health Canada of their intent to sell new products, and will need time to comply with the new rules and produce new products. 

Provincially authorized retailers (such as BC Cannabis Stores and licensed private stores) will need time to purchase and obtain new products and make them available for sale.

What is the THC limit on the new cannabis categories? 

  • Edible cannabis – limited to 10mg of THC per package.
  • Cannabis extracts (for ingesting) – limited to 10mg of THC per unit (such as a capsule) or dispensed amount.
  • Cannabis extracts (for inhaling) – limited to 1000mg of THC per package.
  • Cannabis topicals (for applying to skin, hair, nails) – limited to 1000mg of THC per package.

Are vaporizer cartridges reusable?

Some vaporizers are rechargeable and can therefore be reused for as long as the battery allows. Other vaporizers are intended for limited-time use only. Please refer to the product’s packaging or online description for information about the vaporizer and its intended usage.

Will there be any high-CBD edible or extract products?

New cannabis edible and extract products will contain various levels of THC and/or CBD. All new products will be lab-tested and labelled with THC and CBD levels.

What are the order limits on the new cannabis categories?

In line with the legal personal possession limit of 30g of dried cannabis, customers can order up to the equivalent of this amount. Equivalency amounts will be displayed on packaging and online.

How do I store edibles?

As per Health Canada regulations, new products must be shelf-stable (e.g. can be safely stored at room temperature); however, all cannabis products should be stored safely and securely and away from children and pets.

Are the new products stronger than dried flower?

Extracts, such as vape cartridges and other processed and pressed concentrates (such as shatter, wax or distillates) tend to be at a higher potency than dried flower and may contain up to 1000mg of THC per product. Edibles are limited to 10mg of THC per package, with no limits on CBD.

Before experimenting with edibles, exercise caution and learn what to expect. Start low and go slow – start out with a small dose of THC (e.g. 2.5mg or less) and be patient to avoid overconsuming.

Exercise the most caution with products containing more than 200mg/g (20%) of THC. Higher levels of THC can cause greater levels of impairment and increase the risk of experiencing serious adverse effects.


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