Recreational Cannabis & Sparq Retail
The OCS & Licensed Producers
Currently in Ontario, all licensed retailers must purchase their recreational cannabis products from the Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS). Unlike cannabis products that are made available through unregulated channels, all cannabis products sold by licensed retailers in Ontario are subject to strict testing and certification standards by Health Canada approved labs.
Sparq Retail has a successful history in retail sales and putting the customer first. We understand the importance of providing a positive and engaging experience for our customers and we are driven by developing relationships within the communities we serve. We are delighted to be at the forefront of this newly developed industry and our goal is to provide our customers with a safe, educational way to purchase their favourite cannabis products. Our staff aim to understand your needs and requirements and will work with you to ensure that your experience is nothing short of delightful.
What Cannabis Products Do
Cannabis is often used for its effects on the mind and for medical, religious or social purposes. The two most referred to (and studied) compounds found in the cannabis plant are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Cannabinoid receptors can be found throughout the human body, which endocannabinoids bind to. The plant’s cannabinoids also interact with these receptors and inhibit the way they function.
Because the number of cannabinoid receptors vary from person to person, our reactions to both CBD and THC vary accordingly. Even if two people consume the same strain of cannabis, using the same method of consumption, in the same quantity, they may experience different effects. The experience that consumers have with cannabis products is also impacted by frequency of use, method of consumption, age, genetics, sex, personality, and any existing mental health conditions.
Who Can Use This Product
Recreational cannabis products in Ontario are intended for use by adults over the age of 19. Thanks to the many ways to consume cannabis products, it is easier than ever for the consumer to explore the effects of cannabis products including vaporizers, edible cannabis infused products, beverages and beverage crystals, topical ointments, infused oils, capsules, and dried flower.
Cannabinoids & Terpenes
What Are The Components Of Cannabis?
Cannabis is made up of over 120 components known as cannabinoids. Researchers are still learning about the effects of each cannabinoid, but they have focused their studies on two cannabinoids in particular in order to gain a better understanding of how they interact with the human body. These are known as cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and they are two of the most found cannabinoids in the cannabis plant.
Each of these two compounds have their own effects and common uses:
- This is a commonly found cannabinoid that, unlike THC, generally has no intoxicating effects. CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system by encouraging the release of our own endocannabinoids. It can be found in the trichomes on the flower of many cannabis strains.
- THC. THC is primarily responsible for the psychoactive and intoxicating effects of cannabis consumption. Live cannabis plants contain tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA). When cannabis is decarboxylated (also called ‘de-carbing’) it is heated to a high temperature, the acid molecule (the ‘A’ in THCA) drops off and the THC is activated. The potency of THC in a recreational cannabis product is often expressed as a percentage or mg/g (milligrams per gram).
What are Terpenes
Terpenes are what give each cannabis strain their unique aroma. Terpenes are not only found in Cannabis, but they are also naturally occurring oils and are found in many types of plants that produce a unique taste or smell. The terpenes in cannabis products can range widely from an earthy scent profile to woodsy, herbal, spicy, diesel, cheesy, sweet and even citrus.
The five most common terpenes are:
The impact of terpenes beyond flavour and aroma has yet to be scientifically proven, but some believe that they play into what is known as the entourage effect – referring to the possibility that perhaps cannabinoids and terpenes work together in the overall effect of cannabis.
Just like with other products, terpenes may play a role in developing one’s preference for different recreational cannabis products. If there is generally a gravitation towards aromas or flavour profiles, terpenes may help you to narrow down the scope of your search for a cannabis product to something that you are more likely to enjoy.
At Sparq Retail we offer a full line of OCS edible cannabis infused products. Available edible offerings include chocolates, nano emulsified beverages, beverage powders, baked goods, soft chews and other candies.
Extracts are becoming a very popular segment for consumers of recreational cannabis products. Currently, the OCS carries CBD and THC oils, gel capsules, hash, resin/ rosin, shatter, wax, kief and sift. If you have any questions about availability or about a particular product, please contact our store today!
Dried Cannabis Flower
Dried Cannabis flower remains one of the most popular ways to consume recreational cannabis products in Ontario. The OCS offers a full range of dried cannabis flower in varying weight increments from 1 gram packages to 30 gram packages.
The topical category of recreational cannabis products contains a mixture of both CBD focused, THC focused, and blended (both CBD and THC) products. Most commonly, these are offered as creams, lotions and oils. These topical cannabis products are meant to be applied to the user’s hair, skin or nails and are not meant to be ingested. Unlike traditional methods of consumption, the effects of the selected topical product are typically limited to the application site.
Vaporizers & Cartridges
Vaporizers and cartridges provide a different way for customer to consume cannabis through inhalation without ‘smoking’. When vaporizing your preferred cannabis product, the product (oil or other extracts such as wax, shatter, rosin, and hash) are heated to the point that the cannabinoids are turned into a vapour where the can be inhaled by the user. Products in this category typically carry higher THC or CBD content.
Cannabis infused beverages have become a very popular additional to the edible cannabis product lineup! These beverages are infused with cannabis (CBD or THC – sometimes both!) using a process called nano emulsification. Nano emulsification greatly enhances the shelf stability of these beverages which means they can be enjoyed right off the shelf or out of the refrigerator!
At Sparq Retail we offer a curated selection of accessories that are complimentary to the recreational cannabis products that we offer. To view our current selection, please visit the accessories section of our online shop!
The genetic makeup of a cannabis plant can impact many different characteristics including the physical characteristics of the plant itself, cannabinoid levels, and which terpenes might be present. The terms ‘Indica’ and ‘Sativa’ merely describe the size and shape of the cannabis plant, but over time they have also become an informal way for consumers to group their preferred cannabis strains. The terms ‘indica’ and ‘Sativa’ have become umbrella terms to assist potential consumers as they try to determine a strain that may be best suited for their requirements.
What is indica? Cannabis plants that contain primarily indica genetics will often grow shorter and bushier with leaves that are broader and dark green in colour. Indica cannabis strains also typically have shorter flowering times and are more suitable for climates with a shorter growing season.
While the term indica was originally indented to describe the cannabis plant structure and shape, over time it has also become the identifying ‘term’ for cannabis strains that offer sedative effects such as feeling relaxed, tired, or hungry. It is because of this, that many cannabis consumers consider indica dominant strains as most appropriate for use at nighttime. While these properties are certainly not exclusive to the indica strain, they have become associated with the term to differentiate the two genetic families (indica and sativa) from one another.
What is sativa? Sativa cannabis plants often grow taller in height with leaves that are narrower, longer, and serrated with a light green colour. Some species of sativa cannabis pants have even been reported to reach as high as 25 feet. Sativa plants are often better suited to be grown in a warmer climate with longer growing seasons.
Plants with Sativa genetics are generally considered to provide energetic, euphoric, uplifting and creative effects. Most users consider strains that are sativa dominant as best utilized during the daytime. While these reported effects are certainly not exclusive to the sativa family, it is the most common way to differentiate the two types of cannabis plant.
What is a Hybrid Strain? Hybrid cannabis strains are the result of the two species of cannabis plant indica and sativa) being crossed with one another. As growers explore and cultivate cannabis searching for flavour and aroma profiles or desired effects, different cannabis genetics can be cross bred to create a new strain altogether.
A significant portion of the cannabis products available today are based on hybrid cannabis which are the result of genetically crossing two or more cannabis strains. Hybrid strains vary in their influence from balanced, to indica dominant, or sativa dominant. This variance in genetics allows growers to isolate the characteristics that they are seeking – giving the consumer significantly more variety of choice in the cannabis product marketplace.
For more information on how to choose your cannabis product, visit the Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) educational blog here
Why Sparq Retail
Although we believe products offered should be nothing but the highest quality, we feel customer service should be just as important. We want you to enjoy your experience when picking up cannabis products and accessories, starting from the moment you walk in the door. When working with Sparq Retail, our specialists will take time to learn about your needs, helping you select the right product and dosage.
High Quality Products
Know you are buying quality. Know you have access to the latest products. And know how to use what you choose. Sparq Retail is your local cannabis destination with a wide selection of quality brands. We pride ourselves in providing transparency and educational support for the safe use of cannabis and related products. We are always working behind the scenes to bring innovative new products, services, and solutions to you. We believe it is important to offer a wide range of products, allowing customers to choose based on their desired method of consumption.
Know that when you shop with us that discretion for our clients is a priority. Information security and privacy protection is a top priority for all staff members within our organization to. When you shop with us you are not only getting a personalized experience, but also one where our staff members take the time to understand the customer needs and preferences.
Sparq Retail aims to be your community recreational cannabis resource. Through our extensive knowledge of our products and thorough understanding of cannabis and what it as to offer our customers, we believe that we can offer Peterborough and the Kawartha Lakes an unparalleled shopping experience. We offer compassionate service, knowledgeable, attentive staff, and the utmost discretion for each of our customers.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is Cannabis Legal In Canada?
As of October 17th, 2018, cannabis has been legal throughout the country for recreational use.
2. How Can I Buy Recreational Cannabis Products Legally In Ontario?
Currently, in Ontario it is legal to purchase recreational cannabis products through the Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) or a licensed retailer. Canadian possession law permits an individual to purchase up to the equivalent of 30g of dried flower during a transaction
3. Do I Need ID To Purchase Recreational Cannabis Products?
In order to ensure full government compliance, all customers are asked to present photo identification when purchasing cannabis products and accessories in our stores.
4. I Am New To Cannabis and Would Like To Try It For The First Time – Where Do I Start?
The team at Sparq Retail is always here to assist our customers with finding cannabis products that best suit their needs. We always recommend that those who are new to cannabis consumption start on a low dosage. It is important to understand how cannabis effects your body as it is different for everyone.
For official guidance on consuming cannabis as a first-time or new user, please refer to the Government of Canada’s Cannabis guide here
5. I Don’t Want To Smoke Cannabis, What Other Alternatives Are Available To Me?
There are several alternative methods of ingestion available to the consumer who does not want to smoke their cannabis product. At Sparq Retail we offer a suite of options including edible cannabis-infused chocolates and confectionary, beverages, topical ointments and creams, oils, gel capsules, extracts, and vaporizers.
If you have any questions, contact us today and one of our fantastic staff members would be delighted to answer any questions that you may have!
6. What Do The Percentages Mean On The Packaging?
In Ontario, every product must state its THC and CBD contents – a base number and a ‘total THC’ or ‘total CBD’ percentage. ‘THC’ and ‘CBD’ on the product labels refer to the quantity of active cannabinoids contained in the product as purchased.
‘Total THC’ and ‘Total CBD’ refer to the levels of active cannabinoids when the cannabis is prepared for consumption. The ‘total’ numbers may give an indication for consumers of the potential potency for the product in question.
These numbers can vary on some products (except oil or capsules – the numbers will be the same) because the cannabinoids only become active after decarboxylation (de-carbing). Decarboxylation occurs when the cannabis product is heated to 150 degrees Celsius or more which then activated the cannabinoids.
The cannabinoids in dried flower, for example, are not fully activated when purchased because they are heated in time for consumption, whereas in oil and capsules, the cannabinoids are heated and activated through processing.
For a full explanation of the cannabinoid content on product labels click here
7. How Much Recreational Cannabis Can I Legally Purchase?
According to Canadian law, customers can purchase a maximum of 30g of dried flower (or its equivalency) in one transaction. Our point-of-sale system automatically calculates how close a customer is to the 30g aggregate limit and accounts for non-cannabis flower equivalencies.
8. Is It Safe To Drive After Consuming Cannabis?
The simple answer is no. It is illegal to consume cannabis and operate a motor vehicle. Cannabis can affect your judgement, coordination and reaction time. For further information, please visit the Government of Ontario’s page on Cannabis and Driving here.