Canada’s Problem With Unlicensed CBD Sellers

Written by Antonio DeRose

Canada’s CBD industry is under fire from governmental health agencies warning against unlicensed CBD sellers. Canada has a robust regulatory system for CBD products that include restrictions on health claims on product packaging and other marketing materials. However, this hasn’t stopped unlicensed CBD sellers from making health claims that can mislead potential consumers. [1]


Steps To Discourage Unlicensed CBD Sales in Canada

The road to solving Canada’s CBD problems is a windy one. It will take time to navigate but some steps can be taken to improve the system.


Consumer Education

One of the biggest challenges consumers face when buying CBD is knowing whether or not the company they’re buying from is properly licensed. Ongoing consumer education about CBD products and labeling is a critical first step.

For example, consumers need to know what a Certificate of Analysis (COA) is and how to read it. If a CBD company is not providing a full-panel COA or refuses to when requested, then this is an immediate red flag. Knowing what red flags to look for can prevent consumers from purchasing CBD from unlicensed sellers.


Education for Healthcare Professionals

Canadian healthcare professionals need education about CBD and CBD products. CBD is still seen as somewhat taboo in the majority of Canada’s medical community. CBD education for medical professionals needs to be supported by concrete scientific evidence and research.

Once healthcare professionals are well-educated, they will hopefully be able to help guide consumers with finding CBD products from licensed and reputable sellers. Right now, Canadians are mostly relying on the education presented by CBD companies, which research shows, is highly skewed towards purchasing their products. [2]


What’s Next for CBD Sellers in Canada?

As for companies selling CBD in Canada, there are some things to consider. The government will start to crack down more on unlicensed CBD sellers over time. Businesses should expect more inquiries, involvement, possible inspections, and potential requirements to be proposed in future legislation.




[1]Cannabis Act (S.C. 2018, c. 16). Government of Canada.

[2]Zenone, M. Et al. Selling cannabidiol products in Canada: A framing analysis of advertising claims by online retailers. BMC Public Health 211285 (2021). [Journal Impact Factor= 3.18] [Times Cited=1]


Image: Canada CBD_by Green House Healthy

About the author

Antonio DeRose