Cannabis gift-giving is a thing. And it may be more common than you think. It’s a high holiday season each December, where around 3 million Canadians gift someone with weed. There’s nothing better than giving and receiving a gift—and it doesn’t have to be Christmastime to surprise someone with some bud wrapped in a bow. Online shopping makes gift giving so much easier, but if you’re surprising some with a pot gift, there are some important things to consider.
Once cannabis became legal in October 2018, the Cannabis Act included a framework for those interested in gifting cannabis. Just as it’s legal to possess less than 30 grams of legal dried or equivalent cannabis, it’s legal to share the same amount. We’ll break this down a bit more but essentially, the only restrictions as far as ganja gifts go are the laws put in place to discourage cannabis use among youth and to prevent Canadian cannabis from making it over the border.
Province and Territory Restrictions
Beyond the amount limitations, there are some more things givers should take into consideration before gifting cannabis. While the Cannabis Act includes a general overview, it’s the provincial level who handles more specific regulations regarding age restrictions and online sales.
- Alberta: An adult (18+) is able to give and receive cannabis legally. Cannabis can be purchased from licensed stores, or online at the province’s only legal, recreational online cannabis store (they only ship to recipients in Alberta).
- British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland & Labrador: The age is 19+, and, like Alberta, cannabis can only be purchased from licensed retail stores and the government-operated online store. They’ll only ship within their respective provinces, too. You can even consider a gift card for a B.C. cannabis retail store, it just can’t exceed a $300 denomination.
- Manitoba: Manitoba allows marijuana use for those 19 and older. When Christmas rolls around each year, people living here are among the most likely to put that wrapped gift of marijuana under the tree.
- Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan: It’s 19 and older here, too. Gift recipients will need to verify their age with a government ID.
- Quebec: As of November 1, 2019, cannabis consumers and sharers must be 21 years old. If cannabis is your gift of choice for someone younger, put that gift in the closet for later—or be prepared for a $100 fine.
Presents in the Post
Worried about mailing your pungent pot? Canada Post now offers a scent-blocking envelope. In fact, they require it or something equally odor resistant. In addition to specific shipping services, senders must use an anonymous outer packaging to disguise what’s contained. These are important rules to follow—if any package is suspected to have cannabis in it, it won’t be mailed.
Thinking about sending a thank you note (and nugget) to a minor or someone across Canada’s borders? Don’t. That’s one gift that could land you in jail for up to 14 years. Otherwise, you’re pretty free to share one of nature’s best gifts. Be generous with your gift-giving. Who knows? someone may return the favor on your birthday or next holiday season.