But we’ll have to wait at least a little longer for something so inventive to take root in Canada.

Featuring commentary from Caryma Sa’d

The GrowthOp

Anisha Dhiman | June 3, 2020

Even as cannabis legalization increases around the world, rules surrounding growing it at home can be as varied as they are confusing. Even once all of the regulations are figured out, it’s no easy task. There are supplies to be bought and time to be invested.

For those born without a green thumb, a South African startup has an easy way out.

Based on a membership system, The Haze Club (THC) gives busy professionals an option to grow cannabis at their facility, where the THC team oversees the entire process from germination to drying, curing and delivery.

Keeping up with the law, that allows growing cannabis in the privacy of one’s home, THC members get individual areas in the facility, designated as a private space. Depending on the strain of cannabis being grown, the product is delivered after 12 to 14 weeks.

“The club simply assists members in exercising their constitutional right to grow cannabis in their own private space. The club also limits each member to a maximum of two plants. The amount of cannabis is small enough that there can be no doubt that it is for personal consumption,” THC representatives tell Business Tech“As the law currently stands, (the club) can only grow that which is yours. We do not supply seeds or clones.”

Sounds great, right? But what about something similar happening in Canada?

“You don’t need special permits to grow four plants at your home or a dwelling. But if you are growing cannabis on someone else’s behalf, then you are a designated or registered grower, and that exists only in the medical side,” says Caryma Sa’d, a Toronto-based criminal lawyer and the executive director of the Canadian branch of NORML.

Regulations surrounding home grows are tricky even before considering how to outsource it. For instance, can two people living in a shared household grow four plants each?

“The way that it’s defined right now in the Cannabis Act, it’s not clear,” says Sa’d. The deciding factor could be the lease or tenancy a person has. “You might have a stronger argument to both have your own set of plants if you are both paying the landlord separately and directly, and are considered to have your own tenancies,” says Sa’d.

Although a business like THC can’t exist within the current legal framework, it might prompt consideration toward regulatory improvement. “To be able to outsource cannabis growing is a viable idea for Canadians, who may not have the skills or the time or space,” says Sa’d. “This is precisely the type of policy change we can revisit with the Cannabis Act later this year. These types of practical changes would be helpful to consumers and encourage entrepreneurs as well.”

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