Interesting decision in Canada, MJ Biz calls it historic
Health Canada breached its duty of procedural fairness when it decided that licensed producer Organigram Holdings’ lozenges should be classified as “edible” cannabis rather than extracts, a federal justice said in granting the company’s application for judicial review.
Justice Cecily Strickland kicked the decision back to Canada’s health department to review its initial decision and make a new determination involving the lozenges, known as Jolts.
Millions of dollars could be at stake in the outcome of the legal dispute, given that cannabis extracts are potentially a much more lucrative product than edibles under Health Canada’s classification system for ingestibles.
In an interview with MJBizDaily International Editor Matt Lamers, Organigram CEO Beena Goldenberg said the decision is a “win” for the company, even though Health Canada might ultimately return the same decision.
“Our decision to seek a judicial review was unprecedented in the cannabis industry,” she said.
Still, the federal court did not address Organigram’s key assertion: Health Canada had treated the company unfairly by deciding Organigram needed to yank the lozenges from store shelves years after they were introduced into the market.
The justice also did not rule on the “reasonableness” of Health Canada’s initial decision.
Moncton, New Brunswick-based Organigram had asked the court to quash the Health Canada decision, saying the ruling effectively killed off the market for the products, which had become an increasingly popular segment of the struggling cannabis sector.
Check out Matt’s story to learn more about this historic decision for the Canadian cannabis industry.