30% of Health Canada's Medicinal Cannabis Customers are Sending Back the Government Pot
April 29, 2004: According to Health Canada statistics, of the 93 legal exemptees who have
ordered cannabis through the government so far, 29 have returned it due to its poor quality.
Canadians for Safe Access was informed of this incredibly high rate of return through an
Access for Information Act request. This further confirms
individual exemptee complaints regarding the poor quality of this cannabis.
"We have conducted 3 rounds of THC testing on the Health Canada/Prairie Plant Systems
(PPS) product, with the latest results coming in at 5.1% THC; nowhere near the 10.2%
THC suggested by the government" said Philippe Lucas, a legal user and Director of Canadians for Safe Access.
In addition, CSA has learned that as of March 31st, the Office of Cannabis Medical Access has only sent out 295 ounces of cannabis product. With Prairie Plant Systems 5-year, $5.5 million contract coming to an end early next year, that means that this cannabis has cost Canadian taxpayers roughly $48,000 per exemptee, or over $15,000 per ounce (based on an estimated $4.5 million spent on/by PPS thus far). By comparison, the going rate for illegal cannabis currently sits at about $150-200 for so called "triple-A", making the PPS cannabis undoubtedly the most expensive pot ever produced in Canada.
Meanwhile Canada's compassion clubs and societies supply over 7000 critically and chronically ill Canadians with a safe and affordable source of cannabis (including over half of the federal exemptees), all at no cost to the taxpayer.
"This is a scandal without an end in sight", stated Lucas. "Health Canada and the Office of Cannabis Medical Access cannot continue to sacrifice the health and welfare of sick Canadians while squandering taxpayer money on this failed program. How many more complaints, lawsuits and court orders will it take before Health Canada finally acts with care and compassion in this important health matter? We expect and deserve so much better from Health Canada."