Cannabis lawyer Whitney Abrams shares an overview of British Columbia's recently released provincial recreational cannabis framework.
British Columbia releases retail and product applications
Originally published on Canada Cannabis Legal by Whitney Abrams on August 13, 2018.
After a long wait, British Columbia finally released its provincial recreational cannabis framework with applications for retailers wanting cannabis stores and licensed producers wanting to become designated suppliers.
The province has opted for privately-owned licensed retail locations where owners of private businesses apply for a license to sell non-medical cannabis and cannabis products in standalone shops. As well, Licensed producers who wish to supply products to the BC Liquor Distribution Branch (LDB) for retailers must apply by August 31, 2018. The BCLDB will become the wholesale distributor to retailers.
The Government of Canada has announced that non-medical cannabis will become legal on October 17, 2018.
BC set out its eligibility requirements in July (see www.gov.bc.ca/cannabisregulationandlicensing) but released its applications for retailers and producers on Friday, August 10 (read media release here – https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2018AG0063-001559). We have set out a brief outline of the requirements and deadlines below.
For Cannabis Retailers – immediately:
In order to operate a non-medical cannabis retail location, owners must be granted a licence to operate the cannabis store in a completely standalone business location.
Applicants, other than Indigenous nations, will need to be registered in BC as sole proprietors, partnerships, or corporations. Indigenous nation applicants may apply in their own name or as one of the legal entities above.
In order to obtain a BCeID and depending on the type of business the applicant operates, the following information may be required:
- Proof of ownership or control (i.e. leasehold) of the proposed location;
- Information about the applicant and its associates;
- Details about the proposed location including location and floor plan; and
- Consent for security screening and financial integrity checks.
Applicants must also obtain the support of the local government or Indigenous nation as the case may be and will require an in-store inspection.
The process for acquiring a BCeID starts by reviewing https://justice.gov.bc.ca/cannabislicensing/ and following the steps on the Government of British Columbia website.
Retailers may also sell “Cannabis accessories” as defined in the provincial Cannabis Control and Licensing Act and the federal Cannabis Act, which currently includes “a thing, including rolling papers or wraps, holders, pipes, water pipes, bongs and vaporizers, that is represented to be used in the consumption of cannabis or a thing that is deemed under the federal Act to be represented to be used in the consumption of cannabis.”
Retailers cannot sell snacks, tobacco, or other non-cannabis-related items at a licensed non-medical cannabis retail location.
Product Call for Licensed Producers – closes on Aug. 31, 2018, 5 pm:
BC has invited licensed producers (LPs) to make submissions for dried cannabis (including pre-rolls), cannabis oils, capsules, and seeds that comply with federal requirements.
Submissions will close at 5 pm on Friday, August 31, 2018 (PST).
Download the product call submission documents:
(requires Google Chrome)
Retailers must purchase the above-listed cannabis products through the BCLDB as a wholesaler of designated LPs, but can acquire “cannabis accessories” directly from manufacturers. A 15% mark-up on the landed cost of cannabis distributed throughout the province will be applied to retail stores and to the government’s online store.