Security and frosted windows greet customers at B.C.’s first government cannabis store in Kamloops. (B.C. government photo)

B.C. woman files lawsuit after high-THC cannabis product mislabelled

The spray she bought was labelled high CBD and low THC, but ingredients were the opposite, said Kimberly Webster.

  • Nov. 30, 2018 1:30 p.m.

–– Kamloops This Week

A Kamloops woman is suing BC Cannabis Stores, alleging a product she bought the day after legalization was mislabelled — a mix-up she claims left her “unable to perform her duties” as a student at Thompson Rivers University.

“It’s unfair,” Kimberly Webster told Kamloops This Week.

“When you buy something from someone like BC Cannabis Stores, you’re expecting one product and not another. It’s like going to buy cider and coming home with Everclear.”

The 27-year-old’s notice of civil claim was filed in B.C. Supreme Court on Tuesday.

In addition to BC Cannabis Stores, it lists the B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch — the distributor of cannabis in the province — and Hexo Operations, the producer of the product.

According to the document, Webster purchased a product labelled as Hexo CBD Oral Spray — a product high in CBD and low in THC — from the government store in Columbia Square on Oct. 18.

What she unknowingly received, she said, was the opposite — a spray high in THC and low in CBD.

THC is the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis. CBD offers many of the same effects as THC without those that are mind-altering.

“The defendants failed to warn the plaintiff of the dangers of this product, and … it was mislabelled at the time of purchase,” the notice of claim reads. “The defendants … were negligent in failing to warn the plaintiff.”

Webster, who describes herself as someone largely unfamiliar with the effects of cannabis use, said she and a classmate purchased the spray for academic reasons.

She said they were hoping to write an academic article about labelling on recreational cannabis products.

“We decided we would taste it and it just kind of went from there,” she said.

“We couldn’t stop laughing for anything. Everyone thought we were crazy. I started feeling anxious and, at one point, I was scared of a couch, which is strange.”

READ MORE: Mouldy marijuana recalled in B.C., Ontario

Webster said the incident took place during midterms, noting her grades suffered as a result.

When she received an email from BC Cannabis Stores on Nov. 20 advising her of the labelling mishap, she said, everything clicked.

“I knew there was something off, but I didn’t really know cannabis, so I just went with it,” she said. “But after I got the email, everything started to make a whole lot more sense.”

Neither Hexo, nor BC Cannabis Stores nor the Liquor Distribution Branch have replied to Webster’s claim.

Based in Quebec, Hexo is a company with ties to the Tournament Capital.

Terry Lake, former Kamloops mayor and former MLA and health minister, is the company’s vice-president of corporate social responsibility.

Hexo was co-founded by Adam Miron, now the company’s chief brand officer and a former TRU student who worked in 2005 as a volunteer on Lake’s mayoral campaign.

Contacted by KTW on Thursday, Lake said he could not comment on the lawsuit.

Webster’s claim does not set out a dollar amount. Each defendant has 21 days to reply once they have been served.

Tim Petruk, Kamloops This Week

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

Tom Shypitka, pictured with his campaign team. on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. Trevor Crawley photo
Shypitka wins second term; BC NDP cruise to majority

“Election Days,” rather than “Election Day,” may be the more accurate term… Continue reading

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

John Horgan has been re-elected the MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca. (File-Black Press)
Horgan trounces challengers to be re-elected in his Vancouver Island riding

MLA has represented constituency of Langford-Juan de Fuca and its predecessors since 2005

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan celebrates projected majority NDP government, but no deadline for $1,000 deposit

Premier-elect says majority government will allow him to tackle issues across all of B.C.

Provincial Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau speaks at Provincial Green Party headquarters at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe in Victoria. (Arnold Lim / Black Press)
VIDEO: Furstenau leads BC Greens to win first riding outside of Vancouver Island

Sonia Furstenau became leader of BC Greens one week before snap election was called

NDP Leader John Horgan elbow bumps NDP candidate Coquitlam-Burke Mountain candidate Fin Donnelly following a seniors round table in Coquitlam, B.C., Tuesday, October 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan, NDP head for majority in B.C. election results

Record number of mail-in ballots may shift results

The Canadian border is pictured at the Peace Arch Canada/USA border crossing in Surrey, B.C. Friday, March 20, 2020. More than 4.6 million people have arrived in Canada since the border closed last March and fewer than one-quarter of them were ordered to quarantine while the rest were deemed “essential” and exempted from quarantining. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Majority of international travellers since March deemed ‘essential’, avoid quarantine

As of Oct. 20, 3.5 million travellers had been deemed essential, and another 1.1 million were considered non-essential

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Most Read