Recreational marijuana now legal in Canada


Detachment spokesperson Cpl. Jodi Shelkie says officers aren't anticipating much difference once recreational marijuana is legalized and the first government-run recreational cannabis store opens in Kamloops tomorrow, October 17.

Nearly three years since the Trudeau Liberals were elected - cannabis products are now legal in Canada.

In neighbouring USA, nine states and the District of Columbia have legalised marijuana.

Tom Clarke, an illegal pot dealer for three decades, was among the first to make a legal sale in Canada when his store opened at midnight local time in Portugal Cove, Newfoundland.

Canada has had legal medical marijuana since 2001 and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government has spent two years working toward expanding that to include recreational marijuana.

Premier Doug Ford took several swipes at the Trudeau government's legalization of marijuana during remarks to the Ontario Police Association Annual General Meeting. "I am so happy to be living in Canada right now instead of south of the border".

The patchwork of regulations governing marijuana varies between provinces and territories, and some municipalities also have the option of adding their own rules or opting out of retail sales altogether.

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The AP reported that more than 100 legal pot shops are expected to open on Wednesday.

At a briefing held just hours before cannabis is legal in Canada, federal officials told reporters Tuesday that internal discussions have focused on an application-based process for speeding up pot pardons, instead of a blanket amnesty.

Public health officials contend that smoking cannabis is as harmful as tobacco, but welcome what they call the opportunity that legalization affords for open dialogue.

He has also said that his late brother Michel was facing marijuana possession charges for a "tiny amount" of pot before his death in an avalanche in 1998, and that this influenced his decision to propose legalizing cannabis.

But critics say it will lead to an increase in deaths on Canada's roads.

Legal users will be able to purchase seeds, plants, cannabis oil and dried cannabis from licensed sellers.

"There's no money in the product itself", she said.