The Government of British Columbia announced today it has entered into an agreement with Cowichan Tribes to allow the Indigenous community to operate both their licensed retail locations and well as production.
BC’s Cannabis Control and Licensing Act (CCLA) normally restricts businesses from operating both production and retail in order to ensure the BC retail market is not dominated by a small number of larger producers.
The BC government allows agreements with Indigenous communities under section 119 of the Cannabis Control and Licensing Act.
The one-year agreement allows Cowichan Tribes to continue its existing licensed retail cannabis operations and participate in licensed cannabis production. During the period of the agreement, the province will undertake further policy work to ensure the provincial regulatory framework supports continued development of a robust and diverse cannabis industry that is inclusive of Indigenous Nations.
Cowichan Tribes is located on Vancouver Island. Currently, two Contra Costa retail cannabis stores are located on Cowichan lands. Cowichan Tribes previously objected to a BC Cannabis store operating in the area.
The agreement is the second the province has entered into, the first was with Williams Lake First Nation on Sept. 20, 2020.