Jun 7, 2016 9:20 AM

FDA Asks Canada for Consult on Marijuana Regulations

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is taking advice from Canada on how to regulate medical cannabis effectively in the wake of the state-by-state legalization and the possible future rescheduling of marijuana.

Cannabis Rescheduling to Open Road for Studies
Cannabis Rescheduling to Open Road for Studies
Cannabis researchers are pushing for the DEA to change marijuana classification this summer. Despite marijuana's legalization in some states, it still belongs on the list of Schedule I drugs that are not supposed to be in medicine and are thought to have a high potential for abuse.

With more and more states in the U.S. decriminalizing cannabis or at least putting some effort to that end, the FDA is looking for an effective way to regulate the nascent legal cannabis market. In April, it became known that the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is waiting for the FDA's recommendation on considering marijuana rescheduling. Now, the FDA seems to be collaborating with the neighboring country to adopt the best practices of cannabis regulation.

Later this month, the FDA is arranging a conference that includes a panel dedicated to Canada's system of dealing with legal medical marijuana. The conference will be held from June 26 to June 29, 2016. According to the agenda of the conference, there will be a presentation dedicated to the current Canadian practice of medical cannabis regulation, including the licensing process, enforcement and compliance with the applicable marijuana legislation.

Experts suggest that it might be a step to the new changes in the federal policy on marijuana. They suppose that the Obama administration is going to announce their measures on cannabis regulation.

Though it is not exactly known if the health agency made recommendations on the drug's reclassification or if cannabis remains on the list of Schedule I substances that includes the most restricted drugs with no medical value, the DEA is expected to make a decision by the end of this month.

There are also suggestions that the FDA is doing its due diligence to be ready for inevitable changes that might happen in the near future. The status quo of marijuana is not permanent, and the FDA finds it reasonable to consult Canadian experts to be up-to-date on the neighbors' achievements in the field of cannabis regulations.

Earlier this year, the FDA published a program draft of the annual session that is usually held during the educational conference of the Association of Food and Drug Officials. The program had a slightly different title but a similar agenda.

As for today, Canadians can purchase medical marijuana through several licensed producers or unlicensed dispensaries against which cities are taking strict measures. Moreover, Canada is also moving to implement the promise of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and make medical cannabis legal for all adults. Officials have already announced that they are currently working on regulations, while the government expects to pass laws on marijuana legalization by next spring.

Meanwhile, in America, more and more citizens take a stand in favor of cannabis legalization. The results of a 2015 Gallup poll revealed that nearly 60 percent of Americans completely supported the legal use of marijuana.

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