It’s a victory for consumers who want honesty and transparency when it comes to purchasing cannabis products.
That’s what Delta-based cannabis grower Pure Sunfarms president and CEO Mandesh Dosanjh is saying about a recent decision by Health Canada regarding allegedly inaccurately-labelled potency levels on products sold by other licensed producers, including Canadian rival Canopy Growth.
“We have to build trust with the consumers as we take the cannabis industry from the black market into the legal industry. We have to build confidence and trust that there’s really solid processes of what goes into the bag, what goes into their package and what goes into their bodies. We have to stand behind safety and transparency and we’re always going to do the right thing, not prioritizing short-term profits over transparency,” Dosanjh told the Optimist in a recent interview.
In an update to licensed producers last week, Health Canada stated that static labelling is not permissible, noting that the THC and CBD content values displayed on a dried cannabis product labels should reflect the values tested for the lots.
The requirement includes the labelling of the quantity of concentration of THC or CBD that the cannabis product could yield.
Earlier this year, Pure Sunfarms filed a complaint about the labelling of a THC potencies by Canopy for separate batches of dried cannabis products, saying the statistical likelihood of multiple lots coming back with identical test results for potencies is low.
Under Health Canada rules, producers are required to provide dried flower test results, also known as certificates of analysis (COA), on every batch grown.
One of the most important things that come out of those tests is potency for THC or CBD and, based on those results, specific numbers have to be on the product’s package, explained Dosanjh, adding it’s referred to as “dynamic labelling.”
However, some licensed producers were using static, average numbers and labelling each bag exactly the same.
“We inquired about this and the labelling act says you can’t do this, but some producers were doing this. So, we filed a complaint because it’s not safe, it’s the wrong thing to do and it’s in clear violation of their regulation,” said Dosanjh.
Health Canada also stated that cannabinoid contents can be reasonably rounded and remain compliant with labelling requirements.
A wholly-owned subsidiary of Village Farms, Pure Sunfarms this week said cannabis consumers can now access the company’s COAs through a search function on the company’s website.
The COAs contain information about each batch of dried flower including cannabinoid content (potency), terpene levels and the absence of unwanted chemicals and microbials.