AGCO Update: Emergency Order for Cannabis Retail Stores

AGCO Update: Emergency Order for Cannabis Retail Stores

April 8, 2020 By

After declaring a state of emergency in Ontario back on March 17, the government released a list of essential services, and at that time, authorized Cannabis stores were deemed essential. However, on April 4, a revised list forced Cannabis retail stores to close their doors.

This list looked to be another in a long line of major blows to the industry, already beleaguered before the global pandemic of COVID-19. That is, until the Ontario Government announced, effective immediately and for the duration of the state of emergency, an Emergency Order to allow cannabis retail stores to offer delivery and curbside pick-up. 

General Requirements

  • Only products permitted for sale in a cannabis retail store are eligible for delivery and curbside pick-up
  • A maximum purchase amount of 30g of dried cannabis flower per person
  • Hours of sale, delivery, and pick-up must remain between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. Monday through Sunday
  • All retailers must comply with the laws, including the Registrar’s Standards for Cannabis Retail Stores. For example, retailers cannot sell to anyone under 19 or to anyone intoxicated, and cannabis must be securely stored
  • Only the licence holder or direct employees are permitted to sell and/or deliver cannabis and must be certified by CannSell
  • Cannabis products must be provided in their original packaging and must be delivered concealing the product from minors
  • Products for delivery or curbside pick-up must be ordered and paid by phone or online in advance of pick-up

Requirements for Curbside Pick-up

  • Identification must be provided by customers if they appear to be under 25 years of age
  • The individual picking up must be the same who purchased the product
  • The pickup location must be outdoors and close to the retail store. Customers are not allowed in the store
  • The pickup location must be monitored by the store’s surveillance cameras
  • Licensees must comply with all government directives concerning social distancing. The AGCO encourages licensees to continue practicing social distancing and to make efforts to promote a safe distance between customers in curbside lineups

Requirements for Delivery

  • Products can be delivered to someone at the purchaser’s address provided that they are at least 19 years of age as confirmed by identification
  • Retailers can charge for delivery
  • Cannabis must always be securely stored up until the point of distribution to the customer
  • Retailers must record and retain the name and address of the purchaser and the residential address where any cannabis is delivered
  • Cannabis cannot be sold and delivered to addresses on first nation reverses which prohibit such activity

Retail Operator Licence and Retail Store Authorization Application Update

The AGCO has announced that they will not be issuing new store authorizations until the Emergency Order has been lifted. They will, however, continue to process and conduct eligibility assessments so that businesses will be ready to move forward when the EO is lifted. Also, Retail Operator Licences and Retail Manager Licences will continue to be issued.

If you have any questions about this article or any other Cannabis regulations, be sure to contact us today.

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dicentra Cannabis Consulting provides sought-after guidance on product and marketing compliance, quality assurance and safety standards, research and development, new ingredient assessments and overall regulatory strategies for food and health-related products sold in North American marketplaces. We can also assist you with your classification determinations for delivery systems or combination drug-device products.