A coalition of Canadian cannabis and alcohol companies are pushing for changes to the nation’s proposed rules for cannabis-infused beverages, the CBC reports. The Cannabis Beverage Producers Alliance is seeking the ability to produce cannabis-based beverages in facilities that also produce alcoholic beverages.
The group argues that developing stand-alone cannabis beverage making facilities would take money away from implementing technology and recruiting talent. Paddy Finnegan, business unit manager for food and beverage at Lakeside Process Controls and an alliance member, said the additional cost of establishing separate facilities is a “significant barrier to entry.”
“Those producers that are able to enter the market, at all, are not going to be able to do so at a price point that is appetizing to the consumer.” – Finnegan, during a press conference, via Bloomberg
The draft regulations for edibles say that cannabis beverages cannot have similarities between their alcoholic counterparts and the group says that rules could prevent companies from putting canna-beverages in bottles normally used for wine, according to a Just-Drinks report. The rules also ban companies from using terms like “beer” and “wine” and existing alcohol brands would not be permitted to use any name associated with their alcohol products. Terry Donnelly, chief executive of Hill Street Beverage Company, told Bloomberg those regulations could be “very confusing for the Canadian consumer.”
Health Canada released the edible draft rules in December. Health Canada must approve the final rules by Oct. 17.
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