Results of the Alderville Cannabis Survey Announced

The results of the Alderville Cannabis Survey are now in. The survey, which was run by the Mississauga of Rice Lake Cannabis Association, asked Alderville First Nations members their views on the cannabis plant and its regulation in their community. 142 people filled out the survey over the one-month period from the Sept 15th meeting of the Association, to its Oct 15th closing date. The survey was made available through a mail-out to all homes on the reserve, shared on social media, and could be filled out online.

The results of the survey were a strong endorsement of Alderville’s cannabis industry. 91.5% of respondents stated that they consider cannabis a medicine, and 92.9% said that they believe that the people of Alderville have a “sovereign right” to make their own rules “to determine their own path and choices” regarding the plant.


These very high numbers were comparable to the numbers returned by the Six Nations Cannabis Survey undertaken by the Green Health for 6 dispensary in Six Nations in December of 2017. Six Nations is the largest reserve by population in Canada, and there the 731 respondents declared by 95.1% that cannabis was a medicine and by 96.5% that Six Nations had a sovereign right to establish and run its own cannabis industry.


On the question of whether cannabis is a medicine compatible with Indigenous medicine, 13.4% of respondents said they were unsure. But that still left a resounding majority of 80.2% who said they considered cannabis compatible with indigenous medicine. Survey respondents were very familiar with cannabis, with 92.2% indicating that they had tried cannabis at one point or another in their lives.

About half of respondents consume cannabis products on a daily basis. 16.4% consume weekly, 11.4% monthly, 10% yearly, and 10% don’t consume cannabis at all.

Respondents selected many different reasons for their use of cannabis. The top four reasons for using cannabis medicinally were for pain relief (71.8%), stress (67.7%), and insomnia (50%) and depression (47.6%).

Respondents to the survey indicated that they were generally quite happy with the direction that the cannabis industry was taking in Alderville. 85.8% stated that they thought “the growth and development of the Indigenous cannabis industry to have been a good thing for Alderville” while 12.8% said that they were unsure.

In terms of their self-identification, survey respondents selected a variety of options. The most popular was Ojibway/Anishinaabe/Mississauga at 56.3%, Canadian citizen at 54.2%, and Status Indian at 48.6% of respondents. The average age of respondents was 37 years old.

Women were over-represented in the survey, with 59.2% of respondents identifying as female, and 40.8% as male.

The 142 surveys filled out represents a sample of a little more than 50% of the adult members of Alderville First Nation living on reserve. There are another 800 or so members of Alderville First Nation living off-reserve.

Mississauga of Rice Lake Cannabis Association spokesperson Rob Stevenson is pleased with the survey results.

“We gave everyone a chance to be heard,” said Stevenson. “And we succeeded in getting about half of the on-reserve members to fill out the survey, so this is a big success.” Band membership was confirmed by collecting status numbers, information that is being kept under lock and key and which will be destroyed at the conclusion of the survey. The Association executive has decided to keep the survey open until December 15th, 2018 the date of its next quarterly meeting, so as to give Alderville members – especially those living off reserve – a further opportunity to make their voices heard about cannabis in Alderville.

Alderville First Nation members who have not yet filled out the survey can do so at the following link December 15th.

MEDIA ADVISORY-Indigenous Owned And Operated “True North Seed Bank” Launches 4/20


Indigenous Owned And Operated “True North Seed Bank” Launches as North America’s Largest Cannabis Seed Collector

Monday, April 16, 2018.

Alderville First Nation – On Friday, April 20, 2018, True North Seed Bank, holders of North America’s largest variety of cannabis seeds, will hold its grand opening with giveaways, a barbeque and live music. The 4/20 celebration will take place at its freshly built location in Medicine Wheel Plaza, next to the Medicine Wheel Natural Healing dispensary in Alderville First Nation. Customers will be able to choose from among 2000 varieties of seeds, ready and available on site.

WHO: Cannabis users, enthusiasts, growers, seed bank and dispensary staff, residents of Alderville and the wider community.

WHAT: Grand opening of seed bank with giveaways, BBQ and live music.

    • First 100 customers receive a gift bag including a Canuk Puck (a hockey puck filled with seeds) worth $280

    • 420 bbq burgers, 420 bbq hotdogs, 420 soft drinks

    • live music by Alderville artist Cale Crowe

WHEN: Friday, April 20, from noon until the celebration is over

WHERE: Medicine Wheel Plaza – 8986 County Road 45, Alderville First Nation – See MAP


WHY: With Canada’s legalization there will be a high need for seeds for home and commercial use. True North will supply a massive diversity of seeds to the public, including rare strains. The indigenous owners, operators and staff of Medicine Wheel Natural Healing and True North Seed Bank are ensuring that the indigenous, natural approach to cannabis medicine is supported from seed to harvest.

VISUALS:  Line-ups of people driving, parking, standing; customers reviewing stock, seed catalogue, asking questions; staff explaining strains, making sales; people enjoying bbq; musician playing.

For more information:

Rob Stevenson, Owner – mobile: (905) 396-5488

Smoke Signals Media – mobile – (613) 900-2676 /  / /



Media Advisory – True North 4/20 Launch pdf

Media Advisory – True North 4/20 Launch png


From the land, to the people: introducing Mukwa Botanicals

By Smoke Signals Media

ALDERVILLE FIRST NATION – From salves and lip balms to tinctures and vape pens, Mukwa Botanicals now offers a wide range of indigenous sourced and indigenous made cannabis products. After the official product launch to be held on Saturday, February 24th from 1-4pm at Medicine Wheel Natural Healing, the Mukwa Botanicals line will be available at indigenous cannabis dispensaries across Ontario.

Mukwa means bear in the Ojibway language. In Anishinaabe culture, the bear represents courage, strength, and leadership and the bear clan is traditionally tasked with providing medicines for the people. Mukwa Botanicals was created by Rob Stevenson, an Anishinaabe man of the Bear Clan, who owns Medicine Wheel Natural Healing in Alderville First Nation. Rob identified the need for an Indigenous brand of cannabis products that would uphold the Seven Grandfather Teachings that underpin the core philosophy of Medicine Wheel Natural Healing.

Rob Stevenson speaks with a reporter in Medicine Wheel Natural Healing.

“We’re community-focused,” says Stevenson. “I’m trying to put us in a position to develop the indigenous cannabis industry as a whole, not just for myself but for all the different communities that want to take this path.”

The Mukwa Botanical brand is “developed by Indigenous people, for Indigenous people,” Stevenson emphasizes, indicating that ‘Mukwa’ is a reference to his own identity in belonging to the bear clan. “It encompasses all of what we’re trying to do: using products that are made by indigenous people, majority-sourced from Indigenous people, and we are putting a portion of the profits back to the community.”

Some of the products that Mukwa Botanicals will feature at the launch include rechargeable vape pens that vary in CBD and THC content, from all CBD, to mixed, to mostly THC. Other products include tinctures and essential oils, and soon organic edibles will be added to the product line.

Mukwa Botanicals tincture line.

Essential to the Mukwa brand is the way the medicine is extracted, a method that favours using the entire plant’s spectrum rather than employing isolates or distillates to separate its various psycho and non-psychoactive contents. The idea, Stevenson explains, is to maintain the plant’s full terpene profile, which then creates an “entourage effect” that works much better on the body.

“So we’re trying to create a more holistic environment, because it’s not just about money,” Stevenson said. “We’re really trying to educate people. Again, it’s not just the THC numbers and products; there’s a heck of a lot more to the plant than just the THC – and that’s what we want to focus on.”

As the medicinal cannabis industry grows, more people are beginning to see the true potential of the plant. Its medicinal value is rapidly coming to be accepted even by the western health system. But it will be a while longer before all the stigma is removed from the plant and those that choose to use it are able to do so freely. Rob hopes that what he is doing at Medicine Wheel and with Mukwa Botanicals will help bridge that gap and, in doing so, give Indian Country a much needed economic boost.

And that cannot be understated. As Rob explained, economic independence – whether it’s from medicinal cannabis or any other industry – is essential for political independence.

Medicinal cannabis “is an opportunity for us to get off the coattails of the government and to become self sustaining again,” he said. “What I’d like to see is non-interference. I understand there will be some kind of need to work with the government, but I think it should be up to each individual community to decide how to proceed. Now there’s the opportunity to get on board and make something of this opportunity.”

Medicine Wheel Natural Healing is located at 8986 County Road 45, in Alderville First Nation. The Mukwa Botanicals launch will be held all day on Saturday, February 24 at the Medicine Wheel store from 1-4pm. Visit Mukwa Botanicals at


Alderville First Nation hosts next indigenous cannabis gathering

On Sunday, November 26th, indigenous people interested in the cannabis industry will be gathering from 12-5pm at the Community Hall in Alderville.

One of the outcomes of the October 21st indigenous cannabis meeting in Six Nations was a commitment from Medicine Wheel Natural Healing owner Rob Stevenson to organize a follow up gathering in his home community.

With the community hall of the  Alderville First Nation now booked, Stevenson has confirmed the meeting will be going ahead on Sunday, November 26th from 12-5pm.

In the first part of the meeting, Stevenson and members of his staff will make a presentation on the healing benefits of cannabis and talk about the experiences they’ve been having with their store and the community they serve.

The second part of the meeting will be for indigenous people involved in, or interested in becoming part of the indigenous cannabis industry. This session will discuss the current political situation regarding cannabis legalization in Ontario, and consider the drafting of a common unity declaration between indigenous participants in the industry.

This meeting comes in the wake of a  gathering organized in Six Nations on October 21st. Despite being shut out of the community hall by band council, over 50 people gathered to share information and to make plans for the future.

That meeting saw participants encourage each other to get involved in the cannabis industry before the July 2018 planned legalization by the Federal government.

Indigenous people are claiming the right to use cannabis for medicinal purposes across Canada. In 2017, over 30 dispensaries on indigenous territories have opened in Ontario alone. Unlike dispensaries off-reserve, the province has no jurisdiction on reserve, and the question of how cannabis on reserve will be handled remains an open one.

Medicine Wheel Grand Opening


Medicine Wheel Natural Healing would like to thank everyone who came out to our Grand Opening on August 26th. We invite you to check out our videos from the days events and the picture gallery below! Thank you to all the vendors and participants in the day’s events.


Rob Stevenson, the owner of Medicine Wheel began the event by thanking everyone for coming out.

Brian Marquis is the President of the Ontario Indigenous Medical Cannabis Association then shared a few words.

In the second part of this video, Marquis explains the purpose and mission of the National Indigenous Medical Cannabis Association.

Kevin Shaganash rocked the day away, and kept the crowds entertained! Here he is with his hit song “Idle No More.”

Kevin Shaganash singing “Sweet Cedar Tea.”

Herbalist Lisa Messenger was on site to share her knowledge of herbal medicine. Messenger has been trained in both Western and Indigenous modalities of herbal medicine, and will be working with Medicine Wheel Natural Healing to help clients with a wider range of herbal remedies.