06/28/2013 10:35 EDT | Updated 08/28/2013 05:12 EDT

B.C. Bud Judged At Vancouver's Kush Cup

The best in B.C. medicinal marijuana will be judged starting today at a festival at the PNE — but pot advocates say the event will also help the push to decriminalize the drug.

The Kush Cup, in its second year, is a celebration of high-quality bud at the PNE Forum.

But pot advocate Jodie Emery says the event has become more than just a celebration and party.

“These types of events remind the public at large that's it's safe, it's healthy, it's not causing any problems and in fact, prohibition is what's creating the gangs and all the problems associated with pot.”

Emery says the Kush Cup can help users figure out how to cope with changes coming to the way medicinal marijuana is grown. Next year the federal government will ban home-growers, opting instead for better regulated contractors.

- More on the federal government's new rules

"And many people out there right now are legally allowed to grow their own medicine and they're doing it safely and it’s saving their lives yet the government wants to take away their right to grow simply to make every marijuana plant illegal and that's at the request of police, but I say it's prohibition that creates the problem,” Emery said.

Two medical doctors from California — who promote the benefits of medicinal marijuana use — will appear at a wellness expo connected to the Kush Cup.

The Kush Cup runs June 28 to 30.

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