Bonify

e-news

 

The first year of legalization saw its share of scandals. But while CannTrust stole the spotlight in the summer of 2019, Winnipeg-based licensed producer Bonify was arguably worse.

As we covered in our article from early 2019, Bonify’s most egregious offence was when it sourced and sold illegal cannabis into the open market. This was during a volatile time, where pressure to provide inventory was massive as a huge shortage bottlenecked the nascent cannabis industry.

However, BNN Bloomberg now reports that Bonify, despite the seriousness of their violations, had its licensed reinstated after a massive overhaul.

 

“A Landmark Moment”

 

When it comes to dealing with punitive measures from the government, there was no precedent for whether or not working to improve would even yield results. But Bonify proved that, while Health Canada does not hold back when it comes to non-compliance, it is possible to bounce back.

When Bonify’s licensed was suspended, they brought in RavenQuest Biomed to get them back in the right direction. Now, RavenQuest CEO George Robinson says:

 

“Having guided Bonify through corrective action vis-a-vis operational procedures, proper record-keeping, training, and all other standard operational procedures within the Bonify facility, we now have the roadmap to licence reinstatement for non-compliant operators. This is a landmark moment in an industry that has faced several high-profile compliance challenges.”

 

Essentially, Bonify went from a complete regulatory disaster to total redemption – although it took about eight months to accomplish. More importantly, it provides a living guide for companies like CannTrust, who are still fighting to once again become compliant.

BNN Bloomberg explains:

 

“Bonify’s ability to sell cannabis legally again also offers a clear pathway for other suspended producers to return to compliance with Health Canada if they can demonstrate that they can abide by the regulator’s various measures aimed at ensuring public safety and compliance with the law.”

 

A Learning Experience

 

The Bonify debacle has taught us some very valuable lessons. First of all, Health Canada is not to be trifled with. It is likely that offending licensed producers underestimated the government’s resolve to enforce compliance.

But we are in a time where image is critical. Any health issues from contaminated or substandard cannabis can drastically affect consumer confidence – something we desperately need in order to fight the black market. Consequently, regulators will scrutinize LPs very closely.

Second, it is clear that actions have consequences. Bonify’s offences were severe and the punishment more than fit the crime.

However, the third major lesson here is that there is always the opportunity to be better, whether it is due to Health Canada’s orders or voluntary, proactive measures to improve best practices.

In the words of George Robinson:

 

“The lessons from Bonify are clear: Follow the rules, train your staff and run a clean, well-designed facility capable of producing high-quality cannabis without cutting corners.”

 

WeedAdvisor’s Compliance Solutions

 

WeedAdvisor understands the severity of non-compliance and its effects on both the industry and consumers. It is also important to understand that it is possible to unintentionally fall short of Health Canada’s highly intense standards.

Keeping track of every critical area is no easy task. But thanks to our business solutions, we make compliance automatic, easy and inexpensive.

Inventory tracking, real-time data gathering, reports, safety and quality compliance are just a few areas that our solutions effectively cover. In turn, this brings valuable protection against fines or suspensions, while ensuring continued public confidence.

 

 

 

Blog

 

The first year of legalization saw its share of scandals. But while CannTrust stole the spotlight in the summer of 2019, Winnipeg-based licensed producer Bonify was arguably worse.

As we covered in our article from early 2019, Bonify’s most egregious offense was when it sourced and sold illegal cannabis into the open market. This was during a volatile time, where pressure to provide inventory was massive as a huge shortage bottlenecked the nascent cannabis industry.

However, BNN Bloomberg now reports that Bonify, despite the seriousness of their violations, had its licensed reinstated after a massive overhaul.

 

“A Landmark Moment”

 

When it comes to dealing with punitive measures from the government, there was no precedent for whether or not working to improve would even yield results. But Bonify proved that, while Health Canada does not hold back when it comes to non-compliance, it is possible to bounce back.

When Bonify’s licensed was suspended, they brought in RavenQuest Biomed to get them back in the right direction. Now, RavenQuest CEO George Robinson says:

 

“Having guided Bonify through corrective action vis-a-vis operational procedures, proper record-keeping, training, and all other standard operating procedures within the Bonify facility, we now have the roadmap to license reinstatement for non-compliant operators. This is a landmark moment in an industry that has faced several high-profile compliance challenges.”

 

Essentially, Bonify went from a complete regulatory disaster to total redemption – although it took about eight months to accomplish. More importantly, it provides a living guide for companies like CannTrust, who are still fighting to once again become compliant.

BNN Bloomberg explains:

 

“Bonify’s ability to sell cannabis legally again also offers a clear pathway for other suspended producers to return to compliance with Health Canada if they can demonstrate that they can abide by the regulator’s various measures aimed at ensuring public safety and compliance with the law.”

 

A Learning Experience

 

The Bonify debacle has taught us some very valuable lessons. First of all, Health Canada is not to be trifled with. It is likely that offending licensed producers underestimated the government’s resolve to enforce compliance.

But we are in a time where image is critical. Any health issues from contaminated or substandard cannabis can drastically affect consumer confidence – something we desperately need in order to fight the black market. Consequently, regulators will scrutinize LPs very closely.

Second, it is clear that actions have consequences. Bonify’s offences were severe and the punishment more than fit the crime.

However, the third major lesson here is that there is always the opportunity to be better, whether it is due to Health Canada’s orders or voluntary, proactive measures to improve best practices.

In the words of George Robinson:

 

“The lessons from Bonify are clear: Follow the rules, train your staff and run a clean, well-designed facility capable of producing high-quality cannabis without cutting corners.”

 

WeedAdvisor’s Compliance Solutions

 

WeedAdvisor understands the severity of non-compliance and its effects on both the industry and consumers. It is also important to understand that it is possible to unintentionally fall short of Health Canada’s highly intense standards.

Keeping track of every critical area is no easy task. But thanks to our business solutions, we make compliance automatic, easy and inexpensive.

Inventory tracking, real-time data gathering, reports, safety and quality compliance are just a few areas that our solutions effectively cover. In turn, this brings valuable protection against fines or suspensions, while ensuring continued public confidence.

 

 

 

e-news

 

In early February of 2019, we covered Bonify’s predicament on two separate occasions. For readers unfamiliar with the situation, we covered it in three parts. Click here to view the first, second and third posts.

In summation, a product recall for Winnipeg-based licensed producer Bonify, ultimately revealed a much deeper, more sinister plot.

Following an investigation, regulators discovered that roughly 200kg of product had been obtained and distributed from a still unknown illegal source.

Bonify remained co-operative in the ensuing inquiry by the third party firm, RavenQuest, firing several executives after learning that these individuals bullied junior employees into silence.

Now, CBC News provides yet another update on the situation – and it is rather strange.

The RCMP will not be pressing charges, but fail to give a concrete reason as to why.

 

RCMP Feels Criminal Investigation is Unnecessary

 

After reviewing the situation, authorities decided not to press criminal charges against Bonify or those allegedly involved in the plot.

In a brief statement, the RCMP simply said:

 

“The review of information has been concluded and the RCMP will not be investigating”.

 

So far, we do not know which specific information they reviewed or how/why it led them to forego criminal prosecution.

The province, however, may not be ready to let this slide so easily. According to CBC News, the provincial government will conduct a review of the RCMP’s findings. Consequently, Bonify may not be out of the woods just yet.

 

RavenQuest Never Contacted by RCMP

 

Acting Bonify CEO George Robinson – who began as RavenQuest’s head investigator in the Bonify incident – said that he was never even contacted by law enforcement. He tells CBC News:

 

“I would suggest that there was enough information for them to take a longer look at this thing, but we weren’t contacted or asked about it”.

 

Meantime, however, Robinson continues to oversee the company, where he describes that it is business as usual.

He reassures the public that Bonify is currently in full compliance and continues to make product as they wait for their suspension to be lifted, which they hope will happen following an appeal.

 

Difficult to Lay Charges

 

While we cannot say for sure why the RCMP took a rather soft approach to the Bonify situation, Robinson has a theory.

Because the Canadian legal system relies heavily on precedent in criminal prosecutions, the fact that such a crime never occurred before makes it difficult to present in court.

Robinson suggests that the lack of precedent puts prosecutors and police in a tight spot. There is technically no law covering this type of violation. A good attorney could theoretically argue that it is impossible to break a law that does not exist.

There is a good chance that the possibility of criminal charges will fizzle out. But to ensure accountability in the future, Robinson has a simple solution:

 

“From an industry perspective, I think what would have been nice to see is them to put a fingerprint on this thing, to say, ‘If it happens again, this is what we’re going to do.'”

 

Hopefully, legislators will use this situation to explore new legal guidelines that broadly encompass such gross misconduct by licensed producers. But this is something we will leave to legal experts.

 

WeedAdvisor’s Focus on Compliance

 

Bonify’s situation is rather extreme, specifically due to its deliberate nature. But even accidental compliance failures carry penalties.  WeedAdvisor understands that – despite Bonify’s situation lacking legal precedent – there are plenty of clear regulations with even clearer consequences for non-compliance.

WeedAdvisors business solutions offer a reliable, streamlined and automated system designed to gather data, monitor for issues and compile reports tailored for their respective government bodies.

Such a system saves companies millions in lost productivity, workplace injuries and fines – not to mention hits to public confidence.

Our compliance philosophy revolves around a proactive approach, rather than the reactive one seen in cases like Bonify’s.