Depending on where you are in the world, and whether you have been naughty or nice, St. Nick may be more tempted than ever this year to leave a little marijuana cheer under the Christmas Tree.
Given the increasing acceptance if not mainstreaming of recreational pot this year, particularly in the U.S., it is more and more likely that Santa, or Santa’s Little Helpers will treat those they love during holiday seasons with a little cannabis.
Following local rules and regulations about sales and consumption is the most important rule for bringing holiday cheer to those who receive these gifts.
This year in America in particular, there has never been so much variety to legally buy marijuana. In the edibles area, in particular, there has been a revolution of innovation and exploration. From candy to soda to savoury goods and extracts that can be added to traditional home baked treats, consumers are beginning to have the first real choice among brands as well as products.
In general, it is a good idea also (particularly if children are present as well as lots of other edibles which could easily be mistaken for “unleaded” food) to keep such presents away from under-age celebrators, and keep them in tightly sealed, childproof containers and wrapping at all times. While family gatherings can be a good time to teach about cannabis use from a theoretical point of view, either for medical or recreational purposes, accidental ingestions are not a fun way to spend the holidays.
Several American advocacy groups have also begun to put together handy online guides to help new users understand how to consume safely and these are always good to consult before either giving or consuming cannabis, particularly for novice users.
Americans for Safe Access has led the pack, particularly this year, on creating online guides particularly for patients. The site also carries recipes, growing tips and suggestions for requesting the drug medically from doctors.
Consume Responsibly Org was created by the Marijuana Policy Project and is geared more towards recreational, novice users (although the same basic guidelines if not common sense applies).
MPP’s project, launched earlier this year, is divided into three basic sections – legal information, consumption information, and a section called a “responsibility” section which mainly lists activities that should not be undertaken while under the influence of a high. There is also information on how to recognize the signs of impairment.
Overdosing on smoked ingestion, even with the more powerful vapes and oils available this year, is much harder to do than eating too much of a cannabis infused treat. Use caution when consuming particularly homemade gifts if unsure of the strength or presence of THC in the product itself.
For that reason, extreme caution and care should also be used when either consuming or even contemplating making home baked cannabis cookies for the first time.
Safe consumption of marijuana this season will no doubt add to the joy of the holidays, but it is always good to err on the side of responsible use and go slow, particularly if this is the first time that a little bit of green cheer appears among the leafy boughs of the evergreen.
Happy Cannabis Christmas Everyone!
By Marguerite Arnold