Organic vs. Conventional Cannabis October 24 2018

With the legalization of recreational cannabis now official in Canada, the weed industry is booming and blooming. More than ever, discerning consumers are asking questions about where their cannabis comes from, and how it’s grown. And these questions lead right towards a product that’s steadily growing in importance: organic cannabis. That’s right, organic is a designation that’s not simply limited to your favourite foods. It’s a cannabis classification that will continue to shape the way Canadians consume.

What is Organic Cannabis?

Just like food products, organic cannabis plants are cultivated without the use of pesticides or synthetic agents of any kind, including fertilizers. The result, according to organic enthusiasts, is cannabis with a superior flavour, various health and safety benefits, and a smaller environmental impact. In order to be advertised as organic in Canada, a product has to meet stringent standards set out by the CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency). For example, the organic content of any product labeled “organic” must be 95% or more. It’s important to be aware that terms such as “organically grown” and “organically produced” don’t necessarily guarantee the purity of the product. However, it may be used as an indication that the producer chooses not to use synthetic fertilizers in the growing process. But let’s get back to the benefits of organic cannabis. How is it different from conventionally-grown?

Go Green When it Comes to Green

When it comes to fertilizing cannabis with synthetics, the biggest drawback is often the impact these fertilizers have on the soil. Because it’s designed for quick absorption and plant growth, this method typically doesn’t add to the quality of the growing medium before being absorbed by the plant, and in fact, can leave the soil depleted. Comparatively, organic fertilization methods actually improve the quality of the soil long-term, although the time required for plant absorption is a bit longer. And, of course, there’s always concern surrounding the use of pesticides, which can have an impact not only on the environment, but on cannabis consumers as well.

Health and Safety

Many people use cannabis for medicinal purposes, which is why it’s important to ensure a product that’s as free of unwanted contaminants as possible. Growers are all-too-familiar with cannabis crop threats like spider mites, aphids, whitefly, and more, which has lead to widespread use of pesticides. However, further study is needed to accurately assess the impact these pesticides can have on consumers. In addition, cannabis plants are quite adept at absorbing chemicals and toxins from the soil. So much so, that it’s often planted in contaminated areas as a remediation effort. Organic growers go to great lengths to ensure a healthy, contaminant-free environment, which greatly reduces the chance that you’ll end up consuming something other than cannabis!

Good Taste is Important

For "cannaseurs", flavour is often an integral part of the experience, which is why organic cannabis can be a highly sought-after product. It’s believed that using organic growing methods benefits the production of terpenes and flavonoids, resulting in bud with a superior taste.

Interested in experiencing the benefits of organic cannabis for yourself? For information on the best organic strains, visit your local dispensary.