Canada’s Craft-Scale Micro Grow Licenses


Under Canada’s ACMPR system there is just one tier of cannabis producer. Cultivation and sales licenses are standard for all who are producing and manufacturing cannabis products. It doesn’t matter if we’re cultivating flower or manufacturing oils, it’s the same license. Recently, the administration announced that the new cannabis industry will be different, both regulating and reserving space for smaller, craft-scale cultivations. All of this information was relayed in a media scrum with the Health Minister MP Ginette Pets Taylor.

The Health Minister stated that the government would like to inspire Canadian businesses to build the cannabis industry into a diverse and competitive one. This is why they will be awarding licenses for both ‘Standard’ and ‘Micro’ businesses, keeping space for both large and small tier operations. This is much like the difference between those who shop at large chain grocers versus local co-ops or big-name beer versus craft brewers; each type of business caters to a specific target client. ‘Micro’ businesses would also get to skip some of the regulatory schematics that ‘Standard’ processors will have to follow. Businesses will also be able to identify themselves as hemp cultivators, growing plants with 0.3% or lower of THC. And ‘Nursery’ licenses will be issued for those who want to focus on breeding seeds and clones.




These licenses do allow for differentiation, but the government isn’t stopping vertical integration. There will not be a limit on how many licenses one person can hold. Similarly, companies that do want to vertically integrate will have to hold a license for each phase from seed to sale. In the same announcement, the Health Minister announced that they will implement a seed-to-sale tracking system for regulatory purposes. There will also be another announcement regarding packaging and labeling once regulators have decided how to ensure products stay out of the hands of children.

This announcement is a promising one for the business market because it will help ensure that everyone has a space in Canadian cannabis.

November 24, 2017

by Cara Wietstock

Profile photo of Cara Wietstock
Cara began working in the retail cannabis industry of San Francisco, CA in 2011 and continued in that sector for years. In 2015 she put down her budtender hat and dedicated herself to writing full-time. Her passion for the written word and deep respect for the healing properties of the cannabis plant fuel the passion in her posts.


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