Nova Scotia

Pot and donairs could be sweet combination, says business owner

When cannabis becomes legal on Oct. 17, some businesses in Halifax are banking on a boost in customers with the munchies. Nicholas Nahas, owner of King of Donair, says pot tourism can't hurt the local food industry.

'I don't see many people craving a salad after they've had a few tokes'

Nicholas Nahas, owner of King of Donair in Halifax, says cannabis legalization isn't going to hurt the food industry. He expects to see a boost in business after Oct. 17.

A popular donair shop in Halifax expects a boost in business following cannabis legalization on Oct. 17, thanks to customers with the munchies.

"I can't think of what else you'd rather eat," said Nicholas Nahas, owner of King of Donair. "I don't see many people craving a salad after they've had a few tokes."

Trivago Magazine named Halifax as one of the top five Canadian destinations for pot smokers earlier this year.

The article recommends touring the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, smoking a joint at Conrose Park and grabbing a donair — the "stoner snack of a lifetime."

Lisa Bower of Virginia thinks legalization will be attractive for tourists coming to Halifax.

​Nahas says while he doesn't want a smoking section outside his donair shop, he does welcome more customers.

"We get a lot of Americans and tourists outside other countries as well. I'm sure they'll be happy to come here and find out that, you know, weed is legal and have a good time with it.

"You know selfishly, for the food industry I think it's not gonna hurt."

Visitors with experience

Lisa Bower wishes she took her cruise vacation to Halifax after Oct. 17.

"I'm only sorry I missed it by a week," she said.

Passengers from the Regal Princess visiting Halifax this week shared their views on cannabis legalization.

However, not all vacationers like the idea of pot tourism.

"I think it's gonna be a mistake," said Susan Kessler of Virginia. "It is different than alcohol. It affects your body differently than alcohol."

Larry De Young says it has been a "disaster" in his state of California, where cannabis was legalized two years ago.

"We walk the streets every morning, but we see a whole lot more now," he said. "They're out smoking it. It's everywhere."

One Halifax dispensary told CBC News that passengers from cruise ships come to their store on a regular basis.

Rules for travellers

Visitors hoping to stock up on cannabis while on vacation will need to be careful.

Under the Cannabis Act, legalization will not change Canada's border rules.

Jennifer Morrison, a spokesperson with the Canada Border Services Agency, said without a permit issued by the Canadian government, cannabis will remain illegal to import into Canada or export from the country.

"The unauthorized movement of cannabis across Canada's international borders will remain a serious criminal offence, subject to enforcement up to and including criminal investigation and prosecution," she said in an email to CBC News.

She said once legalization occurs, travellers entering the country will be asked if they have cannabis on them, much like how people are currently asked if they have things such as firearms and weapons.

Read more articles at CBC Nova Scotia

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Angela MacIvor is CBC Nova Scotia's investigative reporter. She has been with CBC since 2006 as a reporter and producer in all three Maritime provinces. All news tips welcome. Send an email to cbcnsinvestigates@cbc.ca

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