You may have noticed it as well – Cannabis stores are popping up all around Toronto. And Liberty Village is also now home to numerous Cannabis dispensaries.
If you haven’t stepped foot into a Cannabis store, you might be wonder what it feels like or experience anxiousness about the thought of it. Worry not because we have interviewed experts who will prepare us for what lies inside the store.
Let’s start with what Jeff Pang, CEO of My Green Merchant, wanted us to be aware of:
LVTO: For people unfamiliar with the terminologies, could you explain the difference between CBD and THC?
Jeff: Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are both cannabinoids that interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, but have very different effects. It’s important to differentiate that THC is the cannabinoid that produces the “high” feeling or sense of euphoria that most people associate with cannabis. Both CBD and THC are psychoactive, but CBD is not intoxicating. Many who consume CBD report a relaxed and calming effect, however, each user may experience it differently.
LVTO: Can you tell us about any misconceptions regarding recreational Cannabis stores?
Jeff: The two most common misconceptions are that we sell “government weed” and that the quality is inferior. The benefit of legalization is strict control on quality testing to ensure you are getting a safe product at the right dosage. Although the government acts as the wholesaler, they do not grow their own cannabis. We purchase products grown by licensed producers, many of which hired some of the best growers from the legacy market and gave them substantial resources to create quality products. Legal cannabis today is quite different from that of early 2020, with better quality, better pricing, and amazing new products. In fact, we love the infused beverages so much that we’ve built an entire cannabis cocktail lounge that features special drink mixes that we think you’ll enjoy.
LVTO: How do you recommend products to first-time recreational Cannabis users?
Jeff: Our budtenders go through extensive training to provide customized recommendations for each customer’s individual needs. We start by understanding what their intended purpose for consumption is, then work with them to determine what their preferred method of consumption is. We then find the best product based on their preferred flavour profile, experience, and restrictions. Lastly, we recommend an appropriate starting dosage with them, usually trying to keep it between 2 to 5 mg of THC to begin with. As we always say, start low and go slow.
My Green Merchant
139 Jefferson Ave, Toronto, M6K 3E4
Here’s what Lana Paraskevopoulos, General Manager of Canvas Cannabis, would like to share with us:
LVTO: People who have never consumed Cannabis in their entire life have a lot of questions in mind and may think its silly to ask. Can you tell us one of the “beginner” questions and share what your answer was?
Lana: I want to begin by saying there are no silly questions when someone is starting their journey with cannabis. It is important that new users share as much information about the experience they are looking for with their budtender. Regardless of the consumption format (ie. flower, vapes, edibles, oils) most new users are concerned with proper dosing, no one wants to have an uncomfortable first experience. I always recommend starting with a low THC dose and moving your way up. Consumers looking for flowers or pre-rolls, I always recommend starting with a product that has a balance of THC and CBD. Low THC doses reduce the chances of an uncomfortable first experience and CBD tends to give most users a relaxing effect. The wide range of products carried by Canvas Cannabis means that we can find a product to suit the needs of any new cannabis user, regardless of their preferred consumption method.
LVTO: With many product types to choose from, someone might be interested in Cannabis-infused food and drink. Could you tell us more about it? What do you advise people buying them the first time?
Lana: Canvas Cannabis offers a wide range of cannabis infused edibles and beverages, with new products being added all the time. Currently, Health Canada has capped the THC content in any edible or beverage product at 10mg of THC. Low doses start at 2.5mg per edible or beverage and rise to 10mg. Regardless of a consumer’s taste preference, Canvas will have a product for them. The beverage category has been the one of the most exciting new cannabis categories for me personally. There are so many refreshing and delicious options that have recently hit the market. For those with a higher THC tolerance I recommend the XMG drinks in the citrus and watermelon and for newer consumers beverages ranging from 2.5mg to 5mg, such as the Little Victory dark cherry would be a better place to start. There are also lots of low sugar options on the market for those of us watching our sugar intake!
145-171 East Liberty St. Toronto, ON, M6K 3P6
Now that you’ve read this, are you ready to visit the Cannabis stores featured? Do you have other questions in mind? Feel free to drop them in the comments!