PEI

Celebrating pot not a reason to breach public health orders, says P.E.I. Cannabis

Despite the fact that 2020 marks the ultimate 420 — the 20th day of the fourth month of a year ending in 20 — the annual celebratory day for cannabis consumers looks much different this year.

‘Especially with cannabis, you know, you don't want to be sharing’

P.E.I. Cannabis is asking 420 participants not to share joints or other apparatuses for cannabis consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic. (CBC)

The 20th of April, the annual celebratory day for cannabis consumers, looks much different this year.

Zach Currie, director of cannabis operations with P.E.I. Cannabis,  says they're still encouraging those eager to enjoy the day, but to do it safely and with respect to what has been laid out by P.E.I.'s Chief Public Health Office.

"We're basically trying to relay a message that aligns with the general messaging coming from the public health community, which is, you know, maintaining social distancing wherever you can," he said.

"Especially with cannabis, you know, you don't want to be sharing."

That means no shared joints, pipes, vapes or bongs for 420 participants, a customary tradition among consumers, but it also means cannabis enthusiasts will have to connect with their friends from afar. 

Charlottetown's P.E.I. Cannabis store on 420. While online delivery remains available, all of P.E.I.'s cannabis stores have been closed since March 19. (Shane Hennessey/CBC)

"Much like any other social experience that we're still trying to maintain and celebrate, you know, it's really kind of leveraging those digital mediums," said Currie.

"Digital infrastructures, they're at our disposal, be it FaceTime or Skype, so then there's no reason we can't celebrate."

Like other retail businesses, the P.E.I. Cannabis Management Corporation has made some amendments to how they run their online stores, including waiving delivery fees and adding new forms of payment, like pre-paid credit cards and several new forms of debit. 

Cannabis stores across P.E.I. have been closed since March 19 and while online sales for the Crown corporation are ongoing, sales are down more than 65 per cent.

"We're very excited and hope our customers and cannabis enthusiasts alike are able to celebrate this day, and we look forward to serving them again in the near future," Currie said.

More from CBC P.E.I.

With files from Tony Davis

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