POLL: Cannabis-infused edible products worry many Canadians

A new survey suggests Canadians have become less accepting of recreational cannabis since 2017, despite legalization last October.

Researchers at Dalhousie University say they're surprised by the findings, which also suggests a high degree of stigma persists.

While the majority of Canadians still support legalization, the research suggests support has dropped to 50.1 per cent from 68.6 per cent in 2017.

Meanwhile, the number of people who neither agree nor disagree with legalization appears to have increased to 20.3 per cent from 6.9 per cent.

Lead author Sylvain Charlebois, an agrifood analyst at Dalhousie, says respondents also reported concern over the risks cannabis pose to children, young adults and pets who may have more access to cannabis products.

And he notes Canadians are especially concerned about cannabis-infused edible products, which are set to hit store shelves this fall — particularly because of the perception that children and pets could overconsume the products.

"Regulating edibles is very different than the dry version, because basically, you can have an edible product right in front of you and you wouldn't even know it," Charlebois told CJAD 800's Andrew Carter on Thursday.

The survey also shows that before legalization, 46 per cent of Canadians supported the idea of selling legal marijuana edibles in stores. Now, just 36 per cent do.

The survey questioned 1,051 adults over four days in April and has an estimated margin of error 3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20. It's a followup to a 2017 survey on attitudes surrounding cannabis before legalization.

The findings were made public Thursday.

CJAD 800's Matt Gilmour contributed to this report.