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article imageNext wave of cannabis products will include vape pens

By Tim Sandle     Jul 29, 2019 in Lifestyle
Vaping has been established firmly with tobacco-based products, but legislation has prevented similar developments with cannabis — until now. Pre-loaded cartridges of cannabis extract, will soon be legal in Canada.
The legislation of cannabis in Canada and parts of the U.S. has seen changes of production, new networks for distribution, and the emergence of some big companies (largely through mergers and acquisitions). The boom in popularity of cannabis-related products has also seen a growth of technology. One area from which the next technological wave could spring is vaping technology.
The expected rise in vape pens will come from the next phase of cannabis legalization, provided that the Canadian government gives the go-ahead for vaping technology. This expansion will accompany other new cannabis-related products scheduled to be approved by the end of 2019, like edibles, beverages and extracts. One stipulation is that the products will require child-resistant and child-proof packaging, and products must not "be appealing to youth", according to Border Security and Organized Crime Reduction Minister Bill Blair.
The introduction of vaping technology to the Canadian cannabis market introduces an appealing investment opportunity for tobacco companies, many of which are seeking to diversify as the take-up of tobacco declines, especially in western markets.
In anticipation of vaping being permitted, Auxly Cannabis Group Inc. has joined force with Imperial Brands (who are generally associated with tobacco products), in a deal expected to be worth in excess of $120 million. With this arrangement, CBC News proposes, Imperial will obtain a foothold in the lucrative cannabis market while Auxly gains access to Imperial's vaping technology and research. Imperial's vapor innovation business is called Nerudia.
Commenting on the deal, Chairman and CEO of Auxly Chuck Rifici said: “Following its extensive evaluation of the Canadian cannabis market, we’re thrilled that Imperial Brands selected Auxly as its partner of choice due to the high calibre of our assets, people and capabilities. We are particularly excited to partner with Imperial Brands on current and future intellectual property and product development, starting with immediate access to its portfolio of vaping technologies and research and development capabilities.”
Auxly Cannabis is not the only cannabis firm to receive money from a major tobacco brand. Cronos Group Inc. received an investment from Altria Group (associated with the Marlboro brand).
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