Whistler Medical Marijuana Corp (WMMC) announced, starting October 24, eligible ACMPR patients will be able to registered with WMMC and purchase plants to produce their own medicine.
The new (ACMPR) regulations, which came into effect on August 24, 2016, allow authorized patients to access medical marijuana in three ways: they can continue to access marijuana by registering with licensed producers, or they can register with Health Canada to grow a limited amount of plants for their own medical purposes, or they can designate someone else to grow it for them. The ACMPR also states that licensed producers are the only legal source for patients to purchase genetic starting materials.
Since the introduction of the ACMPR, Whistler Medical is currently the only licensed producer (LP) selling mother plants. Each strain is priced at $750 for 5 mother plants with the option to purchase clones in bulk for $20 each plus tax and shipping – if the grower no longer wishes to maintain their own mother plants.
At this price point, it is not surprising that activist are complaining the costs are too high for many medical marijuana users and, will result in the perpetuation of underground seed and clone sales.
In a Globe and Mail report, Chris Pelz, president of Whistler Medical Marijuana Corp., said clients are paying an upfront fee for access to strains of organic cannabis that the company has refined over dozens of grow cycles and analyzed using independent laboratories. Plus, these clients can then clone the plants to maintain their supply indefinitely, he said.
“These mums [mother plants] are held in laboratory conditions,” Mr. Pelz said of his products. “I don’t know if the clones that are being blasted out on the street are near the same quality of plant or genetics that we offer.”
Furthermore, the company has no plans to sell seeds, explained Mr. Pelz, due to “the red tape around acquiring seeds” under Health Canada’s rules.
This means patients interested in growing their medicine from seeds are currently out of luck.
Health Canada’s ACMPR has mandated that patients must be allowed to access a legal source of starting materials, and the lack of access to seeds and the very limited access to clones is an obvious concern for patients that plan to grow for themselves or designate a grower.
So, either Health Canada didn’t think things through well enough, or it’s simply a matter of time before more LPs come on board to offer greater selection in variety, quality and price of both seeds and clones. We have heard that licensed producers are not prepared (as of yet) to offer genetics to patients, because they were not given significant advanced knowledge about these important changes to the regulations.
Tweed and Peace Naturals have expressed interest in offering their genetics to registered patients.
Let’s hope more LPs come on board soon, otherwise, Health Canada will need to look at broadening sales and distribution channels beyond Licensed Producers.
By Marijuana.Ca Staff