BC company clarifies that they are not authorized to sell cocaine, psilocybin to the general public

| Staff

BC-based cannabis company Adastra has issued a press release clarifying that they are not going to be selling coca leaf, psilocybin or cocaine to the general public.

The clarification comes following a flurry of media attention in the past few days that often mischaracterized a company press release about a research permit for cannabis as potentially leading to cocaine sales to the general public.

This even prompted BC Premier David Eby to comment that he was “disturbed” by the news. 

The Company received its Controlled Substances “Dealer’s Licence” on August 24, 2022, and an amendment on February 17, 2023. The Company’s wholly-owned subsidiary Adastra Labs Inc. is licensed to possess, produce, assemble, sell, and transport coca leaf, cocaine, and psilocybin. Adastra Labs is only allowed to produce up to 1,000 grams of psilocybin and 250 grams of cocaine in 2023.

“The Dealer’s Licence issued to Adastra Labs does not permit Adastra Labs to sell coca leaf, psilocybin or cocaine to the general public,” stated the press release. “For cocaine, and under the Dealer’s Licence, Adastra Labs is only permitted to sell to other licensed dealers who have cocaine listed on their licence, including pharmacists, practitioners, hospitals, or the holder of a section 56(1) exemption for research purposes under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA).

“The Company is not currently undertaking any activities with cocaine under the Dealer’s Licence and before doing so, it will only undertake such activities legally permitted by the Dealer’s Licence and after consultation with applicable Provincial Governments.”

A so-called “Dealer’s Licence” is required by Health Canada for each physical location where activities are conducted with controlled substances. Despite the name, this does not imply one can sell to the general public. In addition, there are no legal federal mechanisms for such sales of cocaine, coca leaf, or psilocybin.