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Cultivating change: Farmgate cannabis sales come to B.C.

Following Ontario’s lead, the B.C. government announced a new producer retail store (PRS) licence in early October 2022. This licence enables eligible, federally licenced cannabis producers to sell farmgate cannabis at stores located at their cultivation site. B.C.’s Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch will be accepting applications for PRS licences starting on Nov. 30, 2022, via an online portal.

Applications for PRS licences are limited to holders of micro- or standard-cultivation licences, nursery sub-licences and holders of both cultivation and processing licences for the same site. Those holding only a cannabis processing licence are not eligible to apply for a PRS licence.

The PRS must be located at “the same location or near to, but not overlapping with, the perimeter of the cannabis cultivation site.” The PRS must also comply with any relevant local government or Indigenous nation requirements related to cannabis stores, such as distance restrictions for cannabis retail stores in proximity to schools. The Agricultural Land Reserve Use Regulation, which limits the activities that can occur on agricultural land, including cannabis production and farm retail sales, also applies for any PRS that is located on agricultural land.

In addition, holders of a PRS licence are eligible to register for the B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch’s PRS direct-delivery program. This program differs from the Liquor Distribution Branch’s standard direct-delivery program by limiting the direct sale of cannabis products to the PRS licence holder’s own store and removing the production-size eligibility restriction of the standard program.

If you are a federally licenced cultivator in British Columbia and have questions about applying for a PRS, please reach out to Todd Keeler.

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