Background on the Compliance and enforcement of the Cannabis Act reports: Inspection data summary
On October 17, 2018, the Cannabis Act and the Cannabis Regulations came into force. The act establishes a national framework to strictly regulate and restrict access to cannabis in Canada, outside of which cannabis continues to be a prohibited substance under criminal law power. Under the act, federal, provincial and territorial governments share responsibility for overseeing cannabis activities including:
The purpose of the act is to protect public health and public safety, including by providing for the legal production of cannabis to reduce illegal activities in relation to cannabis and providing access to a quality-controlled supply of cannabis.
The amended regulations came into force on October 17, 2019, establishing a regulatory framework for these new products:
- edible cannabis
- cannabis extracts
- cannabis topicals
Health Canada is responsible for conducting compliance and enforcement activities under the Cannabis Act and the Cannabis Regulations.
Health Canada manages risks posed to public health and public safety in connection with cannabis through a variety of compliance and enforcement activities including compliance promotion, compliance monitoring and enforcement actions.
Compliance and enforcement activities include conducting inspections of both:
- cannabis licence holders
- individuals who have obtained the authorization from their health care practitioner to produce a limited amount of cannabis for their own medical purposes
Inspections may involve actions such as:
- visually examining a facility, inventories, equipment, packaging, labelling and websites
- collecting and reviewing documents and records
- taking samples for laboratory analysis
Regulated parties must take corrective actions during or after the inspection to address any noted deficiencies or deviations from the legislative or regulatory requirements.
The Cannabis Act contains a number of enforcement tools that may be considered in determining the appropriate actions to prevent or address non-compliance, based on a review of the situation and all relevant information, including the health or safety risk and the compliance history of the individual or corporation. These include measures ranging from compliance promotion and awareness, which are intended to educate and prevent non-compliance, up to measures intended to correct non-compliance or address a public health or safety risk, such as the issuance of a warning letter, suspension or cancellation of a federal licence, the issuance of a ministerial order (to recall products from the market, conduct tests or studies, produce information or documents or take other measures), or the issuance of administrative monetary penalties (up to $1 million). For more information, see the Compliance and Enforcement Policy for the Cannabis Act.
Summaries of results of cannabis inspections conducted by Health Canada are available at:
Report a problem or mistake on this page
- Date modified: