Alex Campbell (left) and Robyn Houle are the founders of Flexicanna, a Nanaimo-based company that specializes in CBD-infused items like bath bombs. Nicole Crescenzi/ VICTORIA NEWS

UPDATE: Victoria hosts first National Cannabis Conference

Vendors, shoppers and cannabis-curious folk head to the Victoria Conference Centre

From bongs to bath bombs, hundreds of Cannabis-related items were available at the first ever National Cannabis Conference at the Victoria Conference Centre.

The busy event hosted speakers, vendors from across the country, and attendees ranging from veteran Cannabis users to the Cannabis-curious.

“I’m really interested just to see all the differences and how they work,” said Kirsten, a registered massage therapist who didn’t want to give her last name because of the legal status of Cannabis. “I’m still learning quite a lot, and a lot of these products are amazing, seeing them use CBD and THC and all the additional herbs in topical treatments, it’s really intriguing.”

Robyn Houle is the co-founder of Flexicanna, a Nanaimo-based company that sells Cannabis-infused items like balms and bath bombs.

“Our products are only infused with CBD and organic oils, so you don’t get any psychoactive effects from them but they have great benefits,” said Houle, saying her products could help with muscle pain, bone health, and relaxation. “If you’re a pot smoker, I suppose you could always smoke a joint in the bath tub if you wanted the psychoactive effects, too,” she added with a laugh.

Houle’s mother, Kelly Houle, was also at the conference as an attendee and said that her opinion over Cannabis has changed.

“I found myself speechless at first because I wasn’t too sure of the information,” said Houle, “But now I think it’s a huge step forward. Now my mom, who is 89-years old, sits on her chair every morning and every night and uses the CBD balm on her feet and she swears by it.”

Other vendors were offering products to circumnavigate the sale of edibles, Cannabis-infused items that you can eat which are currently unsanctioned for sales, in the form of do-it-yourself Cannabis gummy kits.

“We want people to make the edibles at home, control the doses that they’re putting in, and control their whole edible experience,” said Andrea Butterworth, co-owner of Paracanna, “If people are chasing a pain tolerance they can keep upping their dose or lowering it, we want people to be empowered to do what’s right for them.”

Industry-level representatives were also there including vendors of complex Cannabis plant feeding systems, Cannabis extraction systems and producers of specialized lights for growing Cannabis.

Victoria Coun. Marianne Alto was one of the opening speakers in the morning. She said she hoped for new perceptions to follow the new regulations as Canada moves towards the legalization of Cannabis.

“I think we all know that Cannabis will sort of begin it’s next phase in it’s evolution into just another medical and recreational substance that’s used by lots of people,” Alto said. “So we are hoping this means that slowly we will lose the stereotypes and stigma and we’ll lose the suggestions of organized crime and prices will level out and the quality will get better and more predictable.”

The conference continues through 4 p.m. with dozens of vendors and speakers covering topic from regulations, to investing in Cannabis stocks to Cannabis as medicine.

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Andrea Butterworth is the co-owner of Paracanna, a company that produces do-it-yourself Cannabis gummy kits. Nicole Crescenzi/VICTORIA NEWS

Some Cannabis-infused products available at the National Cannabis Conference. Nicole Crescenzi/VICTORIA NEWS

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