The Value of Legal Cannabis
While prices on the illegal market can sometimes be lower, it’s important to consider why.
- Growing conditions for legal cannabis are strictly monitored and regulated by Health Canada.
- Legal cannabis undergoes strict and rigorous testing.
- The exact contents in legal cannabis are verified and published for each product sold and can be tracked and recalled if necessary.
- Preventative measures have been put in place to keep cannabis away from children and pets.
Four Reasons Why Legal Cannabis Costs More:
1. Health Canada Enforces Stringent Growing Regulations for Licensed Producers
The growing conditions for legal cannabis are strictly monitored and regulated by Health Canada as set out in the federal Cannabis Act. These regulations mean regular inspections of production facilities, growing conditions and product storage. Health Canada regularly makes unannounced visits to Licensed Producers to ensure they follow these strict regulations. Inspectors examine the facilities and may collect samples of cannabis products, soil, fertilizer and carrier oils to ensure compliant growing practices. Health Canada publishes the results of these inspections on a quarterly basis, you can read them here.
WHY IT MATTERS: Because the illegal market is not regulated, the full extent of its growing practices and conditions are unknown. When you buy legal cannabis, you know exactly where it was grown and that growing conditions meet federal standards.
2. Legal Cannabis is Subject to Strict and Rigorous Testing
All finished cannabis products undergo strict and rigorous testing for harmful substances by federally licensed third-party laboratories. Legal cannabis is tested for 97 unapproved pesticides and harmful contaminants such as: E.coli, Salmonella, Staphylococcus, Yeast, Arsenic, Lead, Mercury and much more. You can view the full list here. Before cannabis can be approved for sale, each product requires a COA (Certificate of Analysis) and a SOA (Statement of Attestation) outlining the product’s lot number with acceptable sample test results that have been checked and verified by a Heath Canada approved and designated laboratory.
WHY IT MATTERS: The illegal market does not have certifications or measures in place to demonstrate what is – or most importantly, what is not – in the product you purchase. Buying legal means all products are traceable by batch or lot if there are ever any concerns or issues.
3. The Exact Contents in Legal Cannabis are Published and Verified for Each Product Sold.
Strict regulations and testing mean that each product label clearly indicates the exact levels of the cannabinoids THC and CBD (as both a percentage and as a total percentage), weight, strain, package date and more — so you know exactly what you’re consuming.
WHY IT MATTERS: When purchasing cannabis from the illegal market, product information, if presented, such as the THC or CBD potency potential, strain and the terpene profile, is not verified. Without the strict standards that are in place in the legal marketplace, the illegal market can label any product in a way to induce you to buy it without any basis or accountability.
4. Child-Proof Packaging Helps Keep Cannabis Away from Children and Pets.
Multiple measures are in place to keep cannabis out of the hands of youth and to inform the public on the health risks associated with consuming cannabis. Child-proof, tamper-evident packaging ensures that your product can be safely stored away from children, pets and others who could inadvertently be at risk. All legal cannabis containers are clearly labeled with health warning labels highlighting the risks of cannabis consumption. Standardized cannabis warning symbols are also found on any product containing THC, a psychoactive component found in some cannabis products. Photo identification is required at the point of sale or delivery to ensure products are only being sold or delivered to an adult.
WHY IT MATTERS: The illegal market does not protect children and youth from the dangers that are associated with cannabis use. Protecting the health safety of young people is a top priority for the legal market. Given both the high volume and value of initial deliveries, OCS Wholesale has prioritized security to provide you with comfort that your investments will safely reach store shelves
/ RESOURCES /
Setting up your OCS Wholesale Purchasing Account
/ LICENSED RETAILER PURCHASING ACCOUNT CHECKLIST /
As a Licensed Retailer in Ontario, you are obligated to purchase all cannabis products exclusively through OCS Wholesale. To place product orders, each Licensed Retailer and Authorized Store will require a secure OCS Purchasing Account. Please also note that under provincial legislation, only the Licensed Store Manager or Licensed Retailer is authorized to make purchases on behalf of an Authorized Store.
/ PROCESS AND INFORMATION REQUIRED /
As part of your intake process with OCS Wholesale, a Client Service Representative will work with you over the phone to help set-up your account using key information about your business. In advance to this call, we ask that you please be prepared to provide the following information:
- Legal business name
- Store address (for delivery)
- Billing address (if different from store address)
- Key contact information for orders
- Key contact information for financial matters
- Financial Institution name
- Financial Institution Address (complete)
- Financial Institution Transit Number
- Financial Institution Account Number
- Signed Pre-Authorized Debit form from your Financial Institution (per Schedule B of the Retailer Agreement)
- HST Number
- Copy of Insurance Certificate (must state valaue of Commercial General Liability Insurance in the amount of not less than Ten Million Dollars ($10,000,000) per occurrence, as per section 16.1 of the Retailer Agreement)
- Retail Operator License Number (per AGCO)
- Retail Store Authorization Number (per AGCO)
- Retail Manager License Number (per AGCO)
/ RESOURCES /
Arranging Pre-Payments for Wholesale Orders
/ PRE-PAYING FOR YOUR ORDERS /
When you order wholesale products from OCS, you will be required to pay for the order before it can be shipped to you. Initially, your payments can be made through wire transfer from your financial institution (FI) to ours, or by keeping a credit balance on your OCS Purchasing Account*. Once we have fully set up and confirmed your banking information, we will initiate a pre-authorized debit (PAD) process.
/ CHECKLIST FOR PRE-AUTHORIZED DEBIT TRANSACTIONS /
Once we have received and confirmed the items required on the list below, we will establish a Pre-Authorized Debit (PAD) transaction process between our institutions. This means that you will not be required to initiate any payments for your orders, as we will retrieve the necessary funds directly from your FI. To set up with PAD, please ensure you have provided us with the following:
- A signed, PAD Agreement authorizing OCS to retrieve funds from your account (Schedule B of your Retailer Agreement)
- The name, transit number and address of your Financial Institution
- The number of your bank account
/ QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR FI ABOUT WIRE TRANSFERS /
The way you set up your account and the amounts you expect to wire may affect the way you can send one. Therefore, to make the wire-transfer transaction between our financial institutions as seamless for you as possible, please work with yours to communicate your specific needs and understand the following details:
- Is there a daily cut-off time to request a wire-transfer? If so, what is that time?
- What is the maximum amount permitted fora wire-transfer from my account? What is required to raise the limit, if needed?
- Can I send a wire transfer electronically via online banking or must I visit the branch?
- If the wire can only be done directly in a branch location: a) Who must be present from my business to request the transfer? b) What, if any documentation, must I bring?
- Will I require additional approvals from the FI head office or other officials in the branch to send transfers in large amounts on a frequent basis?
- Will I receive a date and time stamped confirmation of the wire-transfer when executed? How will I receive it?
- How long can I expect for the funds to be received? What, if anything, might delay the process of transfer?
- What are the fees for a wire transfer?
*PRE-PAID CREDIT ON OCS PURCHASING ACCOUNT
You may wire funds to us anytime in advance of placing your order and we will hold the funds as a credit on your OCS Purchasing Account. For example, if your budget is $100,000 for your upcoming order, you may wire-transfer that amount (or more) at any point before ordering, and it will be automatically applied to your order when placed. In these early days when you will be placing your first orders, you may wish to use this
option as it will enable you to avoid arranging your pre-payment on the same day that your order is confirmed, and may affect the timing of your delivery.
Please note: your order must be the same amount or less than the funds transferred.
/ RESOURCES /
Addressing Product Quality Concerns with Customers
Facts and Information about Product Quality
- Moisture content will vary among strains and product lots
- There is no Health Canada guideline for the final moisture content required in a cannabis product
- However, all products are tested to ensure that their moisture content is low enough that it will not encourage growth of microorganisms
- Licensed producers determine the final moisture content for their products
- Currently, licensed producers offer products ranging between 8 and 15% moisture content
- Moisture can be re-introduced to cannabis products by the customer by adding a humidity pack (Boveda, Integra Boost) to the airtight container and removing it when it has reached the desired level of moisture
PACKAGED WEIGHT VARIANCE
- Product weights can differ from the weight shown on the product label
- For a product less than 2 grams, a product may be +/- 10% of the product weight as an acceptable variance
- For a product more than 2 grams, it is acceptable to be +/- 5% of the product weight shown on the label
FRESHNESS OF PRODUCT
- Health Canada does not require licensed producers to include an expiry date on cannabis product packaging
- Each product and licensed producer will have its own standard for how long a product will maintain its properties
The OCS Policy on Product Issues
Our return policy for you as a retailer remains applicable for recalls, damages and order issues only. We cannot offer refunds for product quality concerns unless a recall has been issued.