Bureau of Standards Jamaica
KINGSTON, Jamaica: Cannabis Technical Committee recognized for ground-breaking work in standards development
The Cannabis Technical Committee, chaired by Rory Liu and comprising industry players, regulators, consumer advocates and academia, was adjudged the 2019 Technical Committee of the Year at the recent staging of the Bureau of Standards Jamaica’s Appreciation Ceremony for Technical Committee (TC) members. The selection of the Cannabis Technical Committee is of great significance for Jamaica, particularly in relation to the emerging formal cannabis industry.
The Cannabis Technical Committee completed and submitted two (2) draft standards within a 6-month period: DJCP 6 Draft Jamaican Code of Practice for Processing and handling of cannabis for medical, scientific and therapeutic use; and DJS 347 Draft Jamaican Standard Guide for Packaging and labelling of consumer resin medical cannabis products.
The development of the named standards formalizes the production of cannabis for specific uses, and will propel Jamaica onto the world stage with a product that has long been linked to Jamaica.
These standards are developed to protect public health and safety while maintaining sound scientific best practices during the production, processing and distribution of cannabis and its derivatives.
In addition to the 2 named Standards which have been developed, the Committee recommended the adoption of four (4) ASTM standards as Jamaican Standards, and continues to work on other related standards in the area of cultivation and testing.
Annually across the world, in observance of World Standards Day on October 14, countries celebrate and honour the work of thousands of TC members. In Jamaica, the Bureau of Standards Jamaica (BSJ) leads the country’s observance of the day.
This year’s awards ceremony was held at the Terra Nova Hotel in St Andrew. The award is presented annually to a TC that has been active within a set 12-month period; has had their membership attend at least 50% of their scheduled meetings and has submitted at least one Committee Draft (CD) to the BSJ’s Standards Development Branch for editing.
Dr. Machel Emanuel, Vice Chair of the Cannabis Technical Committee, said that it was a great honour for the TC to receive the award, particularly in light of cannabis moving from a place of being an illegal substance to now unlocking the economic potential of the commodity as a sustained contributor to Jamaica’s economy while in keeping with brand Jamaica.
“The development of standards for cannabis is critical for Jamaica and the Caribbean, in order to maintain its competitive advantage and reputation for producing a high quality product that possesses global demand and credibility” noted Emanuel. “The Government of Jamaica has to be commended for taking a bold and pragmatic move in relaxing its legislation in regards to cannabis and the development of policy framework to effectively regulate and steer the industry,” said Emanuel.
Emanuel was full of praise for Committee Facilitator, Cecelia Johnson whose administrative support, timely intervention and coordination of research were key elements in the committee’s success. Emanuel commended the leadership of Chairman Rory Liu, Greg Douglas and Toni Williams who served as Technical Secretaries. He praised the dedication of the Committee members, representing academia, public and private sector collaboration in their commitment for advancing the cannabis discourse nationally.
The Vice Chairman noted that the TC, in undertaking the research and the development of the standards, was mindful that the standards would not only be applicable to Jamaica, but serve as a reference point, especially for other developing nations situated within the tropics. Additionally, he said that the Jamaican Government now has the task to ensure regulatory bodies move forward in encouraging the adherence to the standards, thus moving the Jamaican product into international acceptance and ensuring proper enforcement, where regulations exist.
The Bamboo and Indigenous TC and the Electrical Products and Practices TC placed second and third respectively.
Contact: Ellis James Laing
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Telephone: 876-484-4832; 876-632-4279 ext 3202
Date: 22 October 2019
Vice Chairman of the Cannabis Technical Committee, Dr. Machel Emanuel (2nd right), holds the Technical Committee of the Year trophy, along with committee members from left, Leslie Bryan, Toni Williams (Technical Secretary) and Committee Facilitator, Cecelia Johnson, at the awards ceremony held on October 17, 2019.