The Newfoundland and Labrador Liquor Corp has launched Cannabis NL, which will oversee recreational cannabis sales in the Canadian province, according to a report from the Telegram. The formation of the cannabis arm comes with a call for canna-business proposals and NLC officials expect to award 41 total licenses in the first round, not including the four already awarded to Canopy Growth.
“We did quite a bit of due diligence on this and we certainly put the effort in and we feel the time we took is going to be well worth it in regard to the [request for proposal] detail and enabling us to ensure that at the end of the day we have the right balance in terms of the licensed cannabis retailers for the province. We feel very strongly that this RFP reflects certainly what the NLC views as our mandate as well as the government’s mandate for us.” – Sharon Sparkes, NLC interim president and CEO
The RFP identifies four types of retail operations:
- Tier 1: Standalone stores.
- Tier 2: A store within an existing retail operation where cannabis products are segregated from other products.
- Tier 3: A dedicated counter within an existing retail space wherein products are available but not displayed.
- Tier 4: Behind the counter sales, similar to tobacco products throughout Canada and most U.S. states.
Licenses will be awarded based on a set of factors including geographic location, social responsibility, safety and security, business plan, and store design. Although cannabis and alcohol sales would, theoretically, be allowed under the provincial rules, prospective business owners seeking to sell both products would receive point deductions on their applications.
The deadline for proposals in Mar. 29, and applicants will be notified of their approval or denial by Apr. 15. Although many anticipated Canada‘s federal legalization taking effect July 1, a deal among lawmakers will push the reforms until at least August.
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