Industry professionals believe cannabis-infused products should be allowed to be consumed in bars and restaurants.
The future of Alberta's cannabis industry is driven by small growers, says Randy Rowe, founder and chair of the Grow Up Conference and Expo event, which begins May 28 in Edmonton.
Microproducers, i.e. small licensed producers, are becoming more and more important, he says, comparing them to wine producers. Thus, these microproducers should organize tourist tours of their crops, as vineyard owners already do.
It's like going to a vineyard, walking through the vines, and then bringing home a bottle of wine.
Tim Mallet, the President of the Alberta Cannabis Micro License Association, which represents the interests of microbreeders, says the industry is still evolving. It's still very fluid, it's still a very immature industry, he says.
According to the man who is also CEO of the Alberta Bud company, the federal and provincial governments should change the taxation system, so that small producers and multinationals are subject to the same rules. Governments take between 50 and 60% of our turnover in the form of royalties and taxes.
There are a lot of people going bankrupt, adds
As a sign of the changes that are shaking the industry, Randy Rowe expects to welcome around 1,500 attendees to the Grow Up conference, compared to more than 4500, six years ago.
One of the founders of Diplomat Consulting, Nathan Mison, wants there to be a change in regulations. He is currently lobbying the City of Edmonton to change zoning rules to allow restaurants and bars to serve cannabis-infused food and drinks.
I hope we can one day include cannabis in the tourism and hospitality sector, he says.
In particular, he wants the government to amend the law on gambling, alcohol and cannabis to allow the consumption of infused products in all bars and restaurants in the province.
During the Grow Up conference, the tourism contribution of cannabis will be the subject of a discussion between four panelists, including City Councilor Michael Janz.
Edmonton as a tourist destination for cannabis?
The latter would like Edmonton to become the tourist capital of cannabis. We have an opportunity to make our zoning regulations more cannabis-friendly and harmonize them with those for alcohol, he writes on his webpage.
Until May 31, the City of Edmonton is accepting public comments on zoning rules, including comments on water consumption. cannabis.
With information from Natasha Reibe