The following FAQs listed below are sourced from the Ontario Cannabis Store website. OCS provides adults in Ontario with access to reliable cannabis products for responsible use and aims to help consumers separate cannabis myths from facts. If you’re unfamiliar with consuming cannabis or simply trying something new, please visit the OCS.ca Learn section for factual information about cannabis and cannabis consumption.
+ How do I understand the THC and CBD content displayed on my cannabis product label?
In its natural state, cannabis has a low level of active cannabinoids. When cannabis is decarboxylated, either through heating or processing, its cannabinoid levels increase. So, the CBD and THC content are displayed on every product label in two ways.
On package labels, the first numbers, listed as “THC” and/or “CBD”, represent the active cannabinoid levels in the cannabis as purchased. Dried cannabis will have a low level of active cannabinoids because it hasn’t been heated yet.
The second numbers are listed as “Total THC” and “Total CBD.” These figures represent the active cannabinoid levels in the cannabis when ready for consumption. Because oil and capsule products have been processed (and the cannabinoids heated already), the second and first numbers will be the same between products.
To find out more about how to understand the information listed on a cannabis product label, click here.
+ What’s the difference between THC and Total THC on a cannabis product label?
“THC” refers to the quantity of active cannabinoids contained in the product at the time of purchase before it is heated by vaping, smoking or cooking.
“Total THC” refers to the levels of active cannabinoids in the cannabis after it has been prepared for consumption by heating through vaping, smoking or cooking. The “Total” cannabinoid content numbers are most helpful in identifying the potential potency that the product may have when consumed.
To better understanding how cannabinoid content is listed on cannabis product labels, click here.
+ Do cannabis products have an expiry date? How do I know if my product is fresh?
Cannabis labels list the date that the cannabis was packaged, which indicates when the finished product was placed and sealed in its final packaging. Expiry dates, which are directionally used to communicate the stability of the product in regards to potency, are not mandatory in Health Canada regulations, so some licensed producers will provide them, but many do not.
If the product is properly stored in a dark, dry place and in an airtight container, it should maintain its full potency until opened. If you have any specific questions, please contact the Licensed Producer directly.
+ How do I contact the Licensed Producer of my product?
Should you ever need to reach them, the licensed producer of every product must provide their name and contact details on the product label, including an email address and phone number.
Each product also includes a lot number which refers to a specific harvest, or “lot” of products, which helps trace it back to quality control processes. Take note of the lot number if making a product inquiry.
+ What is decarboxylation?
Decarboxylation is the process of heating the cannabis to a temperature of 150 degrees Celsius or more in order to “activate” the cannabinoids. Not all cannabis has fully activated cannabinoid content. Dried flower products, for example, are not fully activated when purchased, because they are heated in time for consumption. However, when it comes to oil and capsule products, the cannabinoids have been activated through processing and are ready for consumption.
+ Why is the cannabinoid content listed differently for dried flower than it is for oils or capsules?
To be precise about the cannabinoid content within each product, it is measured differently by format. Dried flower products list cannabinoid content in percentage relative to the total cannabis purchased. Pre-rolls and capsule content is measured in totals per unit, and oil content is listed in milligrams per milliliter.
To understand and compare the information on the different product formats, click here.
+ Why does legal cannabis sometimes cost more than what’s available on the black market?
While some of our prices (which include HST) might be higher than those encountered on the illegal market, when you buy from OCS.ca or AGCO-authorized retail stores, you’re getting tested, traceable, high-quality cannabis products. To learn more about why legal cannabis costs more, click here.
+ How do I grow my own cannabis plants indoors?
Cannabis plants require a lot of attention and very specific conditions to thrive. You’ll need an enclosed space where you can control light and humidity. On average, indoor plants require 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness to promote flowering. Watering your indoor cannabis plants regularly with filtered water will help encourage growth. Click here for more information on growing your own cannabis plants.
+ When will my cannabis plants be ready for harvesting?
Cannabis should be harvested approximately 56¬–75 days after the plant flowers. Wait until approximately 60% of the trichomes on the buds turn from milky white to amber. To dry the flowers, use drying racks or hang in a warm, dry, dark, well-ventilated location and cure buds for 5-15 days depending on the density of the flowers and the drying conditions. To learn more about growing and harvesting your own cannabis plants, click here.
+ Do you offer refunds for seeds that do not germinate?
No. Unfortunately, we do not provide refunds for seeds that do not germinate.
+ Is germination guaranteed?
No. Germination is not guaranteed because there are simply too many variables involved in the process. With proper cultivation, seeds will likely germinate within three days, but can take upwards of a full week to sprout.
+ What growing conditions can influence cannabinoid production and potential yield?
There are numerous factors involved, including but not limited to: light source, growth medium, size of medium, nutrients, water and feed, flower time, harvest time and overall care.
+ How much cannabis, THC and/or CBD will one seed produce?
Since there are a number of variables involved in the growing process of cannabis plants, especially in a private dwelling, it’s impossible know how much cannabis or THC/CBD% one seed will yield.
+ Why is it unsafe for youth to consume cannabis?
The brain continues developing until around age 25, and the use of cannabis may interfere with this development. This is because when consumed, cannabis directly interacts with your brain and central nervous system. Risks are increased with heavy, prolonged consumption and the early onset of use.
Learn more about cannabis effects here.
+ How long will cannabis stay in my system?
This always depends on how much you consume, how you consume it and your genetics, age, personality, gender and other personal biological factors. Effects can take up to 24 hours to fully dissipate, but THC can be detectable in the bloodstream for up to seven days or more, depending on several factors, including frequency of use.
There are few reports of secondary intoxication (i.e. from second hand smoke or vape), but it also depends on a number of factors, including dose and ventilation of the space.
+ What effects might I typically expect from cannabis strains with moderate THC levels?
Cannabis directly interacts with the brain and central nervous system. THC generally produces an intoxicating or impairing effect, even when very little is consumed. In moderate consumption, effects may include a sense of relaxation and pleasant euphoria. THC can also cause unpleasant or harmful effects. Senses may be heightened. The effects vary from person to person and will further depend on strain, consumption method and personal factors like genetics, existing mental health conditions, current mood, age, personality and gender.
+ Is recreational cannabis different than medical cannabis?
In Ontario, OCS is the only online cannabis retailer and wholesaler of legal recreational cannabis, and medical cannabis is only available legally through licensed producers. Products available in both channels may be different at any given time due to different distribution channels, but both are grown under regulated, quality-controlled conditions.
+ Do all cannabis products make you “high”?
No. Cannabis products containing THC will have an intoxicating effect or produce a “high”. However, some cannabis products are exclusively CBD and generally have no intoxicating effects.
+ Can I cook with cannabis?
Yes, but it takes practice to create cannabis-infused products that are consistently dosed. You can learn more about the considerations of cooking with cannabis here. For information on safe food handling and preparation (i.e. cannabis-infused foods) please click here.
+ How do I know how much cannabis to consume?
Always start with a very small amount: one inhalation or a very small amount ingested. Wait at least 10 minutes before inhaling again and 60 minutes before ingesting any more. If ingesting capsules or oil, please follow the directions on the packaging. If you’re new to ingesting cannabis, consider ingesting very small amounts and waiting at least an hour to determine a product’s full effect.
The effects of cannabis vary from person to person and will also depend on the type of product and method used for consumption, along with other personal factors that can include genetics, existing mental health conditions, current mood, age, personality, gender and whether cannabis has been consumed often enough to develop a tolerance.
If you’re new to consuming cannabis or looking for a milder psychoactive effect, choose products with lower THC potency or cannabis products that contain CBD. If you prefer to avoid any potential for intoxication, opt for 100% CBD products.
+ What Is CBD?
CBD is short for cannabidiol and is another common cannabinoid in cannabis. When consumed, CBD affects various processes in your body but does not produce an intoxicating effect.
+ What Is THC?
Short for tetrahydrocannabinol, THC is the most common cannabinoid in cannabis. It is the primary psychoactive cannabinoid responsible for the intoxicating “high” that may be experienced when it’s consumed.