Canada legalizes recreational marijuana

A worker examines cannabis products at the Ontario Cannabis Store distribution centre in an undated handout

John McCarthy wanted to be part of Canadian history on Wednesday.

Annamaria Enenajor, a Toronto-based lawyer directing the national Cannabis Amnesty campaign, said automatically expunging the records for those convicted of low-level cannabis crimes is a far better policy than putting the onus on individuals to apply for such relief.

"It's an awesome day in Canada right now". "This is sort of the end of prohibition for marijuana".

It's a good day for Aurora Cannabis Inc.

"It's significant for all Canadians", McCarthy said.

Once inside, customers can use the touchscreen computers or speak with one of the 25 cannabis consultants about which of the 85-odd marijuana strains they want to purchase.

That's ultimately going to reflect across "Big Weed's" bottom lines, and as one who stresses the importance of financials, I couldn't be happier.

"I am going to frame it and hang it on my wall".

Alan Clark says he has been waiting about two decades for the legalization of marijuana. Tobin, a longtime convenience store owner, said they will be cutting a ribbon and cake. "By giving adults a regulated legal alternative we believe we can make our communities safer".

Cannabis will now be sold in stores and ordered online, with the drugs posted to customers' homes.

The number of stores that will open Wednesday remains unclear, but there could be as many as 100 brick-and-mortar government-run or privately operated locations, depending on whether they pass final inspections or get product shipments in time.

Robert Lawson said he's been smoking weed since he was 14.

"A lot of things first happen on the mainland ... but to have it happen in St. John's?"

"Give it a month and it'll just be like a grocery store".

Molson Coors recently entered a joint venture with Hexo, a publicly-traded cultivator, to produce marijuana-infused beer for the Canadian market, among other deals.

"I don't need to be a criminal anymore, and that's a great feeling", said MacIsaac, who in 2001 had been arrested for possession in Saskatchewan. "It's kind of like Christmas".

McLellan added that early tax revenues from generated cannabis sales will be used to research addiction treatment, for mental health resources and treatment, and for public education about the drug.

"There's no money in the product itself", she said. "We're making sure it looks nice from the outside but children won't be able to see into the store".

Newfoundland and Labrador's unique position, with a time zone 30 minutes ahead of the rest of Atlantic Canada, made Tuesday night extra special for buyers like Power.

Hazen Calebrese is a former federal prosecutor in Fredericton who prosecuted narcotics cases, including marijuana during the 1980s.

Under the new marijuana laws, recreational users will be permitted with up to 30 grams of the dried plant in public - and fly domestically with the same amount. "It's going to take a few years before we have a fully functioning, mature system that's working the way it's supposed to ... but over time you are going to see the black market decline". "It's a candy store, I like the experience", said Vincent Desjardins, a 20-year-old-student. "It's tough to get everything through the bottleneck on a timely basis", University of Waterloo economist Anindya Sen told the San Jose Mercury News.

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