Prof. Michael Dixon from the School of Environmental Sciences was interviewed by the journal Science for a news item about the flood of cannabis research licence applications the Canadian government is sifting through.
Regulations under the Cannabis Act, which came into effect last October, dictate a strict system controlling the production and use of cannabis in research labs including the need for federally issued licences. The article notes that since legalization, hundreds of applicants have applied for these licences.
According to the article, 251 applicants are waiting to hear whether they can begin to research the basic biology and therapeutic possibilities of cannabis.
Dixon commented that he feels for Health Canada, which he says has been “handed an almost impossible chore” processing all the applications.
Dixon, who is the director of U of G’s Controlled Environment Systems Research Facility, is working with colleague Prof. Youbin Zheng to determine the cannabis lighting and soil conditions that will enable producers to grow different varieties of the plant.