In the lead up to the legalization of cannabis, Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis (AGLC) has announced 17 retailers have been given interim licenses.
An interim licence will allow retailers to be prepared for opening day, which they can legally do on Oct. 17.
The license given to the 17 retailers allows them to order and have product shipped to their locations across the province.
A full sales licence will be issued on Oct. 17 once all all conditions are fulfilled. According to AGLC a retail location cannot legally begin selling product from their location until they have a sales licence.
In Sylvan Lake the process includes a couple more steps.
Before a retailer can apply to the AGLC they must first have a license from the municipality. The Town of Sylvan Lake felt uncomfortable giving a full licence to potential cannabis retailers before they were fully vetted by AGLC.
As such, the Town installed a two-part licence for cannabis retailers.
At this time, five retailers have been approved for a developmental permit from the Town and have moved on to seek permission from AGLC.
Once the sales license from AGLC is in place, the retailers may apply for an operational licence from the Town of Sylvan Lake.
According to the AGLC website, all but five of the locations approved are either in Edmonton or in one of the surrounding communities.
The other five retail locations are in either Calgary or Medicine Hat.
Dave Berry, vice president of regulatory services with AGLC said he was very proud of the employees of AGLC to get to this point.
“On this significant day, we will have 17 retail locations open for business and we will continue to license retailers at a steady pace in the days and months following,” Berry said in a press release.
Berry also added Albertan adults over legal age will also have access to AGLC’s online cannabis store on the day of legalization.
While 17 stores is all that will be available right away, those at AGLC expect that number to steadily increase.
By the end of the first year of cannabis being legalized, it is expected there will be roughly 250 cannabis retail locations in operation across the province.
A full list of interim licenses and their locations can be found at www.aglc.ca.