Alberta group pushing to increase cannabis market through insurance

Those promoting the growth of the legal cannabis market in Canada are hopeful that a new event insurance will send a message to the government around the viability of selling cannabis at events and consumption lounges or cafes.

As we come up on five years of legalized cannabis this October. One group, is trying to push the market one step further, through insurance.

“We got through it, we made it legal, and were like ‘yeah’… and then we sorta forgot, we didn’t’ finish the process,” said Jonathan DiPasquale, President of IRC.

Festivals in provinces like Alberta, and Ontario can legally have ‘green zones’ where cannabis can be consumed, but not sold.

“Anywhere that alcohol can be served, why can’t cannabis?” and Nathan Mison, president of Diplomat Consulting.

“IF you want this to be a viable economic opportunity for entrepreneurs, you have to sell on site. And having insurance allows regulators and politicians to feel comfortable”

Mison has been advocating to grow cannabis tourism in Edmonton, and is hopeful this first of it’s kind insurance in Canada can show government that events serving cannabis cocktails, infused meals, even consumption cafes are possible, even if not currently legal in Alberta.

“There is a lot of fear that comes with it initially, but if we take it down and look at the data that is available, we can actually see that the risk is a lot less than alcohol. There is associated risk with it, but we can make sure it is appropriately covered,” said DiPasquale.

The Edmonton Folk Festival says at this time, they don’t mind the current model — bring your own, with designated consumption sites.

But Mison is hopeful, even with some major cannabis players like Aurora leaving Alberta, that the provinces sees this as a way to add jobs and cut red tape.

“There are 11 States that have consumption lounges. And Vegas this week opens up a cannabis hotel. It’s coming. Why can’t we continue to lead,” said Mison.

Cannabis consumption spaces would require a change in provincial law.

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