A new cannabis retail license will allow eligible, federally licensed producers to sell non-medical cannabis products from stores located right at the farming sites.
According to a news release, the provincial government said the license is intended to support the development of a “robust, diverse and sustainable” legal cannabis economy that is inclusive of Indigenous and rural communities.
In a news release, Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General said with the fourth anniversary of legalization of cannabis in B.C. around the corner, the government continues to look for ways to support growth of the legal market while providing safe and accessible options for British Columbia.”
According to the release, producers will be able to apply for the BC Liquor Distribution Branch’s producer retail store direct-delivery program under the PRS direct-delivery category. Direct delivery will be limited to the sale of cannabis produced by the cultivator/nursery.
This is distinct from the current (broader based) program which has size-specific eligibility requirements and enables the sale of cannabis to any licensed and authorized cannabis retail store in B.C.
RDCK Area G director Hans Cunningham has been advocating for the implementation of farm-gate sales.
“What we are seeing now is no different than the farm-gate sales of wine at local distilleries,” says Cunningham. “People were worried about the implications of private sales, and there was a lot of push back from the community and I expect we will see that here.”
Cunningham says the introduction of cannabis, across the region and across the country, has been very calm and it hasn’t been anything like people were predicting 10 years ago.
“I think we have adequate measures in place to make sure this rolls out properly,” says Cunningham.
The implementation of farm-gate sales would see a boost in the local economy, and give a boost to producers which in turn could lead to more variety at retail outlets.
“Products won’t change,” says Cunningham. “Farm-gate sales doesn’t mean you will get a better deal, it just means you will have a chance to examine the different products the same way you do for everything else.”
Cunningham says farm-gate sales will not impact retail stores in the region, but instead it will help improve them and in turn help the local economy.
The launch of farm-gate sales follows the recent opening of the first cannabis facility in Williams Lake, which was the result of a government-to-government agreement between the province and WIlliams Lake First Nation.
To learn more about licensed cannabis producers visit their website.