Alberta makes changes to cannabis sampling rules, event sales, and more

| David Brown

Alberta Gaming Liquor and Cannabis (AGLC) made several updates to their  Retail Cannabis Store Handbook and the Cannabis Representative Handbook this week, effective immediately. 

The changes relate to authorizations to sell cannabis at age-gated events, new guidance for cannabis sampling and cannabis sales between retail stores, among other changes.

Following changes last year when AGLC began allowing producers to provide product samples to retailers, the provincial agency has now made amendments to its rules to allow samples of packages larger than 3.5 grams. 

Under the new rules, if a sample product is not available in the 3.5 gram size, the smallest available size of the product may be provided as a sample. Each product may be sampled no more than twice per calendar year.

Licensed cannabis retailers may also now apply to AGLC for a licence extension for the purposes of selling cannabis at a minors-prohibited entertainment event or cannabis industry trade show.

In addition, cannabis sales between licensed cannabis retailers, regardless of ownership structure, are now permitted in Alberta. The required 120-day wait time between cannabis transfers has also been removed to allow unlimited transfers of cannabis products between licensees owned by the same legal entity.

Another change is that licensed cannabis retailers are now able to apply to AGLC for a licence extension for the purposes of selling cannabis at entertainment events or cannabis industry trade shows. These events must be age-gated to preclude minors. 

Cannabis retailers can now also leave cannabis products in locked display cases overnight, rather than having to move them to and from locked storage every night and morning. 

This means cannabis products must either be stored in a locked showcase in the customer area or a locked storage room accessible only by authorized staff.

The AGLC has also updated its policies to align with the agency’s Cannabis Waste Management Fact Sheet 2023.