Alberta Loosens Cannabis Regulations

Alberta is changing provincial cannabis regulations to “give retailers more time to focus on their business, while ensuring health, safety, and security remain a top priority.”

The Alberta government made the announcement in December 2023 in a media release titled, “Reducing red tape for cannabis retailers.”

On January 31, 2024, the following improvements to the Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis Regulation will come into force:

  • Licensed cannabis retailers can operate temporary sales locations at adults-only events like trade shows and festivals.
  • Cannabis retailers can keep their products in locked display cases when the store is closed rather than moving everything into a secured storage room at the close of every business day.
  • Restrictions are removed on sales and transfers between cannabis retailers and to further allow Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis to establish resale markup limits.

Dale Nally, Minister of Service Alberta and Red Tape Reduction, was quoted as saying, “We’ve been looking at the cannabis market to determine what’s working, what needs to be improved, and what’s redundant or unnecessary while protecting public health and safety. These changes are the result of our latest work to help curb the illegal cannabis industry and continue providing choices Albertans can trust.”

Stratcann, one of Canada’s cannabis news platforms, reported, “…a media representative for the AGLC tells StratCann that the ‘policies and processes to support cannabis licensees who are interested in operating temporary sales locations are in development and will be shared with cannabis stakeholders prior to the implementation date.’”

The CBC reported, “In Edmonton and Calgary, city bylaws already allow smoking or vaping cannabis at outdoor festivals and public events, but only in designated areas. And in those cases, selling cannabis on site isn’t allowed… The changes will allow licensed cannabis retailers to set up temporary sales at adults-only events, like trade shows and festivals. They also ease some of the restrictions around how store owners can transfer product between different locations and lift the requirement to store product in a secure area off the shop floor while the store is closed.”

Cannabis in Alberta is regulated by the Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis (AGLC) ministry.


Happy New Year!

Can you believe that 2024 is the 10th year AirMed has been in business? It’s true. We started in 2014!

A lot has happened in our industry during those 10 years, some good and some not-so-good. But we want you to know that we pledge our commitment to continued hard work and innovation, and we see great things on the horizon.

As we look ahead to the coming year, we send best wishes for a future filled with success and abundance to all our industry. Expect 2024 to be a year of new vistas and exciting possibilities for cannabis in Canada. Here’s to moving forward with positivity and purpose.

From everyone at AirMed, Happy New Year!


Season's Greetings

The staff at AirMed would like to wish all our industry the best this holiday season.

And we’d like to take this opportunity to thank all those who supported us this past year. We value the connections we’ve made with clients, future clients and partners as well as with other industry members.

Looking forward to working with you in the future, may this season bring you peace and joy.


In the News Five Years After Cannabis Legalization in Canada

This month marked the fifth anniversary of the legalization of cannabis in Canada, and news outlets offered various views on the results so far. While some of the articles discussed the challenges and struggles facing the industry, others looked at different aspects.

CTV News reports that “Five years after cannabis legalization, 64 per cent of Canadians are in support of the move.” The article published on the CTV News website was about the results of an online survey conducted by Research Co. “Support for the legalization of marijuana is highest among Canadians aged 55 and over (66 per cent),” Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. said in a press release. “The proportions are lower among those aged 35-to-54 (56 per cent) and those aged 18-to-34 (48 per cent).”

https://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/five-years-after-cannabis-legalization-64-per-cent-of-canadians-are-in-support-of-the-move-survey-1.6621182

The Canadian Medical Association Journal published “Outcomes associated with nonmedical cannabis legalization policy in Canada: taking stock at the 5-year mark.” This scholarly article reported, “Cannabis legalization in Canada appears not to have been the public health disaster anticipated by some of its opponents, but it cannot be described as a comprehensive or unequivocal success for public health either.”

https://www.cmaj.ca/content/195/39/E1351#ref-11

The Royal Gazette published “Canada and cannabis at Year 5,” which focused on three major aspects: the cannabis market, public health and social justice. “Canadian experience demonstrates there have been problems that must be responded to. But the ending of criminalisation that especially burdened Indigenous and Black people, the creation of a legal market providing untainted cannabis — the strength of which is clear — and the confronting of the illicit one that makes vast sums of money, pays no taxes and has no regard for the quality of what it sells must weigh heavily in the balance.”

https://www.royalgazette.com/opinion-writer/opinion/article/20231028/canada-and-cannabis-at-year-5/


What We Heard Report

The federal government released a report that summarizes what a “five-person expert panel has heard over the past year as it engaged with almost 500 stakeholders in nearly 90 meetings across Canada.”

The report, titled “What We Heard,” describes the scope of the engagement and summarizes the responses in several categories including: public health, impact on young persons, impact on First Nations and more.

Read about the expert panel and review here: https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/drugs-medication/cannabis/laws-regulations/cannabis-act-legislative-review/expert-panel/legislative-review-cannabis-act-report.html

Read the report here: https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/drugs-medication/cannabis/laws-regulations/cannabis-act-legislative-review/expert-panel/legislative-review-cannabis-act-report.html

Stratcann summarized the report in an article published on their website on October 10, 2023, the same day the report was released.

Read the Stratcann article here: https://stratcann.com/other/canada-releases-what-we-heard-report-on-the-cannabis-act-review/

Global News followed up the release of the report with an in-depth article on the state of the cannabis industry in Canada. In the feature published on October 16, 2023, Global News offers commentary by several experts including George Smitherman, president and chief executive of the Cannabis Council of Canada.

Read the Global News article here: https://globalnews.ca/news/10027112/cannabis-act-review-canada/


Stratcann: Micros Could Surpass Standards in Canada Next Year

According to an article published by Stratcann, “At the current pace of licensing, the total number of micro licences could surpass standard licences in 2024.”

Stratcann, an online news publication covering the evolution of the legal cannabis industry in Canada and around the world, reported that “Micro cannabis licences continue to grow in popularity in Canada, at almost 42 percent of all licences issued as of March 31, 2023. Just over half (51 percent) of licences were standard, three percent were nursery licences, and nearly four percent were medical-sales only licences.”


Health Canada Seeks Your Feedback from March 25 to May 24, 2023

In relation to a consultation on potential amendments to the Cannabis Regulations, Health Canada is seeking feedback and comments on potential amendments to the Cannabis Regulations.

The aims of the consultation include clarifying existing requirements, eliminating regulation inefficiencies and duplications and reducing administrative and regulatory burdens, and Health Canada is seeking input from:

  • cannabis industry stakeholders
  • public health stakeholders, non-governmental organizations
  • researchers and research or academic institutions
  • First Nations, Inuit and Métis partners and organizations
  • law enforcement
  • provincial, territorial and municipal governments

For more information including how you can provide feedback until May 24, 2023, visit:
https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/programs/consultation-potential-amendments-cannabis-regulations.html


Read about Great White North Growers in Cannabis Prospect Magazine

AirMed client, Great White North Growers, has been profiled in a feature article in the December 2022 edition of Cannabis Prospect magazine.

The article, titled “The French Connection: How Great White North Growers Became Synonymous with Quebec Cannabis” features an interview with company co-founder George Goulakos.

The author writes, “In a few short years, Great White North Growers has gone from a licensed producer of its house brand and 514 Cannabis to a powerhouse working with over 30 growers in the province to get its products in SDQC stores.”

In the interview, Goulakos describes his company’s history, business model and future plans. “My partner Peter Schissler and I realized that there was a fantastic opportunity in this exciting new industry, and we decided to get in early… We were one of the first Licensed Producers in Quebec to be granted all Health Canada licenses and saw an opportunity to assist Quebec-based micro cultivators bring their products to market… Our mission is to be a proud Canadian company with strong values and a social conscience.”

To read the full article visit: https://issuu.com/cannabisprospectmag/docs/cannabis_prospect_magazine_dec._22_issue_-_digi/10

For more information on Great White North Growers, visit: https://gwng.ca/

Cannabis Prospect Magazine is Canada’s premier trade publication for cannabis industry professionals. Cannabis Prospect Magazine showcases the people and companies forging this new industry with articles written by industry experts and advisors that make up this new and dynamic marketplace. For more information visit: https://cannabisproonline.com/


Read about AirMed client Rogue Processing at Stratcann

AirMed client Rogue Processing has been profiled on Canada’s legal cannabis news platform, StratCann.

The article features Graham Taylor, the President and CEO of Rogue Processing, which is located in Niverville, Manitoba, about 20 km south of Winnipeg. Rogue offers state-of-the-art co-packing services to Canadian cannabis companies looking for a client-focused, eco-friendly, cost-effective, and tech-savvy alternative to current service providers.

“It’s sustainable not only because we’re using more environmentally friendly packaging, it’s also a more financially sustainable model where customers keep more profits in their pocket allowing them to…grow their business.” Graham Taylor

Stratcann covers the evolution of the legal cannabis industry in Canada and around the world, publishes news, company features and brand profiles.

To read the full Rogue Processing profile on the Stratcann website visit:
https://stratcann.com/profiles/rogue-processing/

For more information on Rogue Processing, visit: https://rogueprocessing.com/


What to Expect from the Cannabis Act Review

Since the announcement of the Cannabis Act review, people are speaking out about what they hope to see from reviewers.

The review was initially planned to begin in 2021 and look at the public health implications of the legalization of cannabis in Canada.

The CBC reported that the government delayed the start of the review to expand the scope. “The review mandate has been expanded to include an examination of the social and environmental effects of the Cannabis Act, the impact of legalization and regulation of medical cannabis and the impact on racialized communities and women.”

Read more here: https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/public-health-cannabis-mandated-eview-1.6591442

An article in The Globe & Mail stated that “For George Smitherman, the chief executive officer of the Cannabis Council of Canada, the national industry association, the announcement comes at a critical time. Companies continue to face pressure from the illicit market, as well as excise taxes, provincial distributor markups and regulatory fees.”

Read more here: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-health-canada-cannabis-act-review/

The Toronto Star notes that the pot sector wants packaging changes and financial relief from the review. “The industry is frustrated the review’s launch arrived a year later than mandated but is still hoping it can result in enough tweaked restrictions to make cannabis distribution easier, draw in new customers and prevent more staffing and facility cuts.”

Read more here: https://www.thestar.com/news/cannabis/2022/09/22/pot-sector-wants-packaging-changes-financial-relief-from-cannabis-act-review.html

The review is expected to be completed in 18 months, and government officials say that it will consider health issues as well as financial, tax, regulatory and criminal-justice matters.


Media Marks the Fourth Anniversary of Cannabis Legalization in Canada

Yesterday, October 17, 2022, was the fourth anniversary of the legalization of cannabis in Canada.

Canada legalized cannabis on October 17, 2018. Since then, there have been many changes to the cannabis landscape, but some say we need even more reform.

The media took the opportunity to mark the day with reviews of the progress, criticisms of the process and calls for improvement.

Stratcann, an online news publication covering the evolution of the legal cannabis industry in Canada and around the world, chronicled Canadian legalization.

Read the article here:
https://stratcann.com/insight/four-years-later-following-canadas-path-to-legalizing-cannabis/

The Toronto Sun claimed, “Still much to iron out on fourth anniversary of Canada’s legalization of cannabis.”

Read the article here:
https://torontosun.com/news/still-much-to-iron-out-on-fourth-anniversary-of-canadas-legalization-of-cannabis

MJBizDaily, a news source for the cannabis industry in the US and Canada, published that “Canadian marijuana businesses pitch reform on legalization’s 4th anniversary.”

Read the article here:
https://mjbizdaily.com/canadian-cannabis-businesses-pitch-reform-on-legalization-4th-anniversary/

The Toronto Star declared that Canada’s cannabis producers say they’re in crisis.

Read the article here:
https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2022/10/17/canadas-cannabis-producers-say-theyre-in-crisis-heres-what-theyre-asking-the-government-to-do.html


B.C. Enables Cannabis Farm-to-gate Sales

The Province of British Columbia announced last week that it will introduce a new cannabis retail licence that will allow eligible federally licensed cannabis producers to sell non-medical cannabis products from stores located at their cultivation site.

The producer retail store (PRS) license is expected to go into effect on November 30, 2022.

Standard cultivators, micros and nursery licence-holders will be eligible to apply through the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch’s (LCRB) liquor and cannabis licensing portal.

The media release published on the Province’s website reads, “This licence was created as part of the Province’s commitment to enable farm-to-gate cannabis sales in British Columbia… This launch follows the recent opening of the first farm-gate cannabis facility in B.C. in Williams Lake, which was a result of the government-to-government agreement between the Province and Williams Lake First Nation.”

B.C. currently has 212 federally licensed cannabis producers, which includes 74 micro-producers.

To read the full media release visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2022PSSG0061-001490

Information about cannabis regulation in B.C.: https://www.cannabis.gov.bc.ca

Information about the Buy Legal campaign: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/public-safety/cannabis/buy-legal

Licensed cannabis producers and retail stores in B.C. interested in participating in direct delivery can find information on the program’s website:
https://www.bcldbcannabisupdates.com/LDBDirectDeliveryProgram

Information about the BC Indigenous Cannabis Product (BCICP) program: https://www.bcldbcannabisupdates.com/BCICP


Government of Canada Launches Cannabis Act Review

On September 22, 2022, the Government of Canada announced the launch of a legislative review of the Cannabis Act.

The announcement stated, “Parliamentarians recognized the need for an early assessment of the Government’s new approach to cannabis control, and included a provision requiring a review in the Act. The review will help ensure that the Act adapts to the current situation and continues to meet Canadians needs and expectations.”

An independent panel of experts will lead what is being called a credible and inclusive review. “The Panel will provide independent, expert advice to both Ministers on progress made towards achieving the Act’s objectives, and will help identify priority areas for improving the functioning of the legislation.”

In conjunction with the legislative review, an online engagement process has been launched.

All Canadians are invited to read Taking Stock of Progress: Cannabis Legalization and Regulation in Canada.

Read here: https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/programs/engaging-cannabis-legalization-regulation-canada-taking-stock-progress/document.html

Canadians are also encouraged to share their views via the online questionnaire or through written feedback until November 21, 2022.

Take the survey here: https://ca1se.voxco.com/SE/?st=3KoT2Xgsv4uHJF2%2F0i%2F7oo5IS3ATejUCjIjdJ4lUsME%3D&lang=en

You can also read the original announcement on the Government of Canada website.

Visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/news/2022/09/government-of-canada-launches-legislative-review-of-the-cannabis-act.html


Micro licences take off in Quebec

According to a recent post at the cannabis news website, Stratcann, Quebec has seen more new micro licences in 2022 than any other province so far this year.

The CEO of the Association québécoise de l’industrie du cannabis (AQIC), Pierre Leclerc, says believes the recent increase may be a reflection of the maturing market.

“I think Quebec entrepreneurs sat back a little and watched how the market would play out… building a business model around the micro licence production is something that makes sense in Quebec.”

Read the full article here: https://stratcann.com/news/micro-licences-taking-off-in-quebec/

For more information on how AirMed supports micro growers and processors, visit our Software page.


Read about AirMed client Craft Kings at Stratcann

AirMed client Craft Kings has been profiled on Canada’s legal cannabis news platform, StratCann.

The article features Tye Harlock and Kyle Windle, co-founders of Craft Kings, and their approach to micro cultivating at their facility in Sooke on Vancouver Island.

“I really do believe that the industry is going to be heavily reliant on craft. So that’s what we’re focused on. It’s what we know how to do, and the people buying it seem to agree. We just want to keep finding new strains to bring them, and to keep getting better.”

Stratcann covers the evolution of the legal cannabis industry in Canada and around the world, publishes news, company features and brand profiles.

To read the full Craft Kings profile on the Stratcann website visit:
https://stratcann.com/profiles/vancouver-islands-micro-grower-craft-kings-focusses-on-small-batch-quality/

For more information on Craft Kings, visit: https://craftkings.ca/


Canadian Greenhouse Conference 2022: Oct 5-6 Niagara Falls

As Canada’s foremost event for commercial greenhouse flower, vegetable, cannabis, berry and nursery growers, the Canadian Greenhouse Conference is the ultimate connection point for growers, suppliers and research partners.

The 2022 Canadian Greenhouse Conference will take place in-person at the Niagara Falls Convention Centre in Niagara Falls, Ontario on October 5 and 6.

The CGC is excited to continue its 40-year tradition of supporting professional Canadian growers; offering two days of informative, motivating sessions and a large trade show featuring 200+ exhibitors.

For more information visit:  https://www.canadiangreenhouseconference.com/


Cannabis Delivery Options Expanded in British Columbia

As of Friday, July 8, 2022, licensed cannabis retail stores (CRSs) in the province of British Columbia are permitted to deliver non-medical cannabis to consumers through Canada Post and other common carriers.

This change has come about as a result of lobbying by the Association of Canadian Cannabis Retailers (ACCRES) and other groups. Until now, only the government in British Columbia has been able to do this since legalization.

“Since federal legalization of non-medical cannabis, we have continued to look for ways to support the cannabis industry in our province while providing safe and accessible options for British Columbians,” says Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “Expanding delivery-service options not only builds equality within the market, it also gives consumers one more reason to buy legal instead of illicit.”


Canadian cannabis sales projected to double over next five years

A “Cannabis Canada Weekly” column published on BNN Bloomberg in March 2022 reports that Canadian cannabis sales are expected to double to $8.8B over next five years.

The article refers to a report published by the market researchers at Brightfield Group and notes, “The pace of sales in Canada’s cannabis market may be slowing down, but it is still expected to double over the next five years, according to a new report.”


Cannabis in Canada: Get the Facts

Do you have questions about cannabis in Canada? Would you like to understand the laws that govern the Canadian cannabis industry? Are you considering applying for a license to cultivate, process or sell cannabis?

The federal government has a webpage that outlines what industry needs to know about cannabis in Canada. This information covers the basics related to doing business in the cannabis industry including:
Impact of the new law and regulations on industry

  • Applying for or amending a federal licence
  • Packaging and labelling requirements
  • Cannabis Tracking and Licensing System requirements
  • Compliance and enforcement under the Cannabis Act
  • Prohibitions on promotions
  • and more

The page provides links to relevant sections of the federal government website where you can find more information on each topic.
https://www.canada.ca/en/services/health/campaigns/cannabis/industry.html

For more information on how AirMed helps you meet compliance, visit our Compliance page or our Frequently Asked Questions page. If you’d like to discuss your specific needs, please give us a call at 1-877-313-2442 or use one of the contact forms to start the ball rolling.


Canadian Greenhouse Conference 2021: Oct 6-7 Online

As Canada’s foremost event for commercial greenhouse flower, vegetable, cannabis, berry and nursery growers, the Canadian Greenhouse Conference is the ultimate connection point for growers, suppliers and research partners.

The 2021 Canadian Greenhouse Conference will offer a comprehensive on-line experience.

Speakers from across Canada and around the world bring expertise to our forum with live sessions, supplementary resources, and New Product Displays.

Sessions will be recorded and available on the virtual conference platform for 90 days. A full-access registration will be required to log on to the platform after October 7. Registration will remain open until January 6, 2022 and you may upgrade your basic registration at any time.

For more information visit:  https://www.canadiangreenhouseconference.com/