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Health Canada ups number of licensed producers despite driving risks

Health Canada has approved dozens of licensed producers applications over the course of the second half of 2017, and still has another 208 applicants waiting on the list to be approved. This comes off as a surprise given their latest findings of increased cases of smoking and driving in the last few years even with the recreational legalization coming up in just a few months.

Smoking marijuana influences driving and everyone knows it.

Maybe not after smoking one joint with a few people as much as it would if you smoked a couple on your own, but it most definitely does affect your driving skills, eyesight, and reflexes.

Numerous tests have been done, both in laboratories and in the field and they always result the same way — with a recommendation never to smoke and drive, especially at the same time.

Even so, hotboxing has been a very popular trend among the youth in the past decades.

Here’s a great video made a few years ago showing an experiment on a regular everyday user, a weekend user, and an occasional user.

As you may have seen, the girl (Addy) came to the test already under influence and 3x over the legal limit and drove fine.

This proves only that you can drive, not that you won’t make a mistake while driving.

Sure enough, after smoking a whole gram on her own Addy was no longer in any condition to be out on the street in a car.

Still too many high drivers on the streets

In a recent study conducted by Health Canada, a notable number of drivers have reported having been using marijuana and driving immediately (within next 2 hours) after.

“Driving after using cannabis for medical purposes was studied among respondents who used cannabis for medical purposes and completed the medical section of the survey. 37% of these respondents reported that they have driven within two hours of using cannabis for medical purposes, and of those who had driven after using half did so within the past 30 days. Male users (46%) were more likely to report driving within 2 hours of using cannabis for medical purposes more than female users were (28%).”

Here are some more interesting stats about driving high gathered by Health Canada:

Even though we would like to think everyone knows cannabis affects driving skills, it appears that many don’t think it affects it to a risky level.

“Respondents who used cannabis for medical purposes and completed the medical section of the survey were asked if they believed that cannabis use for medical purposes impairs one’s ability to drive. More of these respondents reported that ‘yes’ cannabis use for medical purposes impairs one’s ability to drive (41%) compared to those that reported ‘no’ (27%) and ‘it depends’ (32%).”

Further research proved that not very many Canadians believe that it is safe to drive immediately after smoking. In fact, only about 7% do believe so.

When Health Canda asked how much time is an optimal period to have pass after smoking before driving again, the most common response was that it depends (34%), followed by one to three hours (21%), and three to five hours (14%).

CBD causes turmoil on a planetary level

For the first time in history, the World Health Organization has recognized Cannabidiol (CBD) as “one of several (probably 200) compounds of the cannabis plant,” which “does not appear to have abuse potential or cause harm.”

Given that respondents who used cannabis for medical purposes in the past 12 months spent approximately $121 on cannabis for medical purposes in a typical month, that gives a lot of value to CBD as the first legal compound in marijuana.

When asked how much money they spent on particular products, Canadians said that on average, users purchased or received 12.8 grams of dried flower/leaf, 5 servings of edibles, 108.7 milliliters of cannabis oil, and 3.0 grams of solid concentrate.

Seeing how 2017 was definitely the year of cannabis in Canada, and 2018 sure seems to look even better, the rest of the plant is slowly catching along, and WHO recognizing CBD as a legal and non-addictive compound is just the tip of the iceberg.

Health Canada approved 80 licensed producers so far

It seems that preparations for the legalization of recreational marijuana are in full swing as Health Canada licensed 80 producers this year alone.

Hundreds of applications came in this year as the legalization saw an expansion in the production fields.

The means of production are being quickly seized in 2017 as the number of licensed producers nearly doubled.

Seeing how there were only 44 producers when the long-awaited increase of the number of producers was announced back in late-May, nobody really expected the number to double in less than 6 months.

Health Canada spokesperson, Tammy Jarbeau, said that as of Dec. 1, 208 applicants were in the final stages of the approval process.

“These applicants have completed the security clearance process and their application is being reviewed to determine whether it meets all the requirements of the regulations,” Jarbeau said in a statement.“A licence is only issued once security clearances have been granted, the application meets the regulatory requirements and a facility has been built.”

New cannabis production facility near Edmonton

A new facility near Edmonton will soon be ready to grow marijuana as work begins on what could soon become the country’s largest marijuana growing operations according to the people behind the facility.

Troy Dezwart, co-founder and chief operating officer of Freedom Cannabis said that work is underway to convert an old modular home factory into a marijuana grow and production operation.

Freedom Cannabis estimates it could employ 150 people at their facility. The manpower would include growers, trimmers, quality assurance personnel an, marketing staff.

Health Canada has not yet granted a license to Freedom cannabis, as one of the first requirements is to have a facility built.

Troy Dezwart said the facility will most likely be completed before Health Canada granted them a license, at which point production should begin in late 2018 or early 2019.

Read more: Is driving high more dangerous than driving drunk