Regulation

Cannabis Drinks To Be On Tap In Canada This December

A cannabis joint venture plans to start selling different types of marijuana-infused beverages in Canada this year.

The maker of Coors Light has partnered with Quebec-based Hexo Corp. to create various non-alcoholic, cannabis-infused drinks that will hit the Canadian market on the first day they can be legally sold.

The joint venture, Truss, will have “lots of different beverages” available starting on December 16, said Jay McMillan, Hexo’s vice president of strategic development.

“We’ll have a very large supply so we’ll be in a good position to be able to meet the demand of the marketplace and at the same time also ensure that we’re meeting the variety that the marketplace wants,” McMillan said in an interview with Bloomberg at the World Cannabis Congress in Saint John, New Brunswick.

Truss will offer everything from water to a “beer-like product” and possibly hot beverages. It is also looking into selling CBD-infused drinks in the U.S.

While Canada will add edibles, beverages, vape pens and topicals to its list of legal cannabis products this fall, they won’t be available until at least December 16. However, alcohol-related terms like “beer” and “wine” can’t be used to market the drinks.

“You’re going to have to call it a cannabis-infused yeast extract,” Darrell Dexter, executive director of the Cannabis Beverage Producers Alliance and former premier of Nova Scotia, joked in a panel discussion.

Earlier this year it was revealed that one month after Canada legalized marijuana for everyone in the country, Canadians spent C$54 million ($41 million) on the product — higher than the original estimate of C$43 million, illustrating the potential of the market.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had said that prohibition wasn’t working and provided illicit money to gangs, while allowing for unchecked use by the country’s youth.

“The criminal prohibition that was in effect for a century in this country has failed our kids and our community,” said Bill Blair, minister of border security and organized crime reduction. He said the change will result in “order to every aspect of the production, distribution and consumption of cannabis.”

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