Selling Recreational Cannabis

Under the Cannabis Act and Regulations, cannabis can be sold for both recreational and medical purposes, but not all licenses are handled federally. The federal government oversees the license for sale of medical cannabis but has given provinces and territories responsibility for recreational cannabis sale and distribution.


Provinces and territories are in charge of developing, implementing, maintaining, and enforcing plans to handle the sale of non-medical cannabis. Under the Act, they are required to collaborate with municipalities to create their own legislation that consistently protects public health and safety.


Personnel Requirements for federal medical sales license:

The License Requirements are:

Under the Cannabis Act and Cannabis Regulations, a processing licence is required to manufacture and package cannabis-based products such as edibles, topicals and extracts. Currently, there are two variations of the processing licence, being standard processing and micro-processing. Both standard and micro-processing licences allow for the sale and distribution of cannabis products to other licence holders, or to provincial and territorial retailers (i.e. recreational cannabis sales).
Before you can begin selling recreational cannabis, there are two things you need to do after you receive your initial processing licence:


Sales Amendment

When a processing licence is issued by Health Canada, it will initially have conditions placed upon it which will limit the activities that may be conducted, such as selling and distributing to provincially and territorially authorized retailers and the sale for medical purposes to medical licence holders.

Therefore, the next step will be to apply for an amendment of the licence to get the conditions removed so that your processing business will be authorized to sell cannabis products (such as dried cannabis and/or fresh cannabis, cannabis topicals, cannabis extracts or cannabis edibles) to provincially and territorially authorized retailers and/or holders of a licence for sale for medical purposes. An inspection by Health Canada may also be required before you receive your amended processing licence with said conditions removed.


Notice of New Cannabis Product (NNCP)

Each time a new product is developed, a notification must be provided to Health Canada at least 60 calendar days before making that new product available for sale (as is required by section 244 of the Cannabis Regulations). Based on the class(es) of cannabis being developed, certain documentation will need to be submitted for the specified number of representative lots/batches of cannabis products (i.e. packaged and labelled for sale to a consumer at the retail level).

This is ultimately how your recreational cannabis products will end up on retail store shelves.

Recreational cannabis retail regulations vary across the country, with each province and territory implementing their own rules and regulations. Generally, a Cannabis Retail Licence will be required to distribute non-medical cannabis products to adults who are of legal age. Visit our Sale & Retail Recreational License page for information about local laws.

Additional Helpful Services

Standard Operating Procedures: Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) are key when it comes to ensuring that your cannabis retail business runs in accordance with the law set forth by the governing agency. SOPs will also provide your employees with consistent and effective procedures to run your business successfully.

See Also

Grow Cannabis

Produce dried or fresh cannabis, plants and seeds.


Sell Recreational Cannabis

Sell recreational cannabis to consumers over the age of 18.


Make Cannabis Products

Trim, cut, dry, extract, manufacture, package, label cannabis products.


Conduct Cannabis Testing

Conduct analytical testing for purity, potency, identity.


Sell Medical Cannabis

Sell cannabis as medicine for registered users.


Develop New Products & Edibles

Develop new cannabis products or set up a clinical study.

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