Quebec to launch ‘small batch’ pilot project for cannabis micro-growers

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The Société québécoise du cannabis (SQDC) is launching a “small batch” pilot project to facilitate the marketing of new products by microproducers.

The program will allow batches of cannabis under 40 kg, and provided the product or genetics are new to the Quebec market, to be sold in the province outside of current product calls and applications.

Products will be limited to 3.5 gram offerings starting at CA$25 (€5.42/g), and products will need to consider SQDC guidelines for eco-friendly packaging.

To determine the products that will be approved under the program, the SQDC will also take into account cultivation methods, as well as proximity to Quebec.

The program was announced this week, and the SQDC expects to be able to accept products for review by mid-September, with 10 small batches to be chosen by the end of September.

The products will be available to consumers during the first phase of testing from November 21 to January 15, 2023 at select SQDC branches. The SQDC will then follow up with the Association québécoise de l’industrie du cannabis (AQIC) and the industry in general in February 2023 to measure the success of the program.

If the pilot project is successful for producers and consumers, the SQDC anticipates full implementation of the program in April-May 2023.

Pierre Leclerc, CEO of the Association québécoise de l’industrie du cannabis (AQIC), who consulted with the SQDC on the development of this project, says he is excited about the opportunities the program will provide for micro and other small-batch producers who attempt to penetrate the Quebec market.

“We are very satisfied and happy that the SQDC is going in this direction and happy with this collaboration,” rejoiced Pierre Leclerc to StratCann.

“It’s a good way to introduce interesting new genetics to the Quebec market. I think this can be an important opportunity for producers in Quebec and across Canada. »

The program is a good example of Quebec listening to the needs of cannabis producers, he said. While it is micro-designed and the province may place more emphasis on local products, it is open to all Canadian growers who can meet the province’s requirements for small batches and new genetics. .

“The program was put in place after some micros requested such a program and informed the SQDC of their problems regarding their ability to do business with it. The whole program has therefore been built around the needs of microphones, but it is not limited exclusively to microphones. »

Louis Sirois, president of Laboratoire InoVert, a standards processor in Quebec, and president of Groupe Conseils Sirois, thinks the program will help the province identify new products that resonate with consumers.

“They want to offer something different, something of good value that can provide new and special products. It is a good way to introduce new and interesting genetic products to the Quebec market. I think this can be an important opportunity for producers in Quebec and across Canada. »

“Then, if it’s good, it can find a long-term place in the market.”

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