The sale and use of recreational cannabis became legal on Wednesday, October 17, 2018 in all of Canada, and sales were reportedly brisk at online portals across the country.
Actual brick and mortar stores are a slightly different story, as very few have received all the proper permitting to do business.
Kimberley has two retail cannabis stores, both of which were providers of medical cannabis for the past several years.
Both those stores were open on Wednesday, as their permits move through the process. The City of Kimberley approved both of their applications, when the Liquor Control Board asked for comment last week, but the process is not yet complete.
Laurie Weitzel, of Earth’s Own Naturals on Howard Street, issued the following statement:
“Today is a monumental day in Canada and Earth’s Own Naturals Ltd. is very excited to be apart of it. We are getting close to the AIP (Approval in principal) in the application process with the provincial government.
“We would like to be provincially licensed and to be carrying regulated product by mid November or earlier. We are open today so everyone is welcome to come in and be curious! We are here to field any questions, the public may have as long as you are 19 years of age or older. Thank you Kimberley for all the support you have provided us since January 2017!”
Tamarack Cannabis Boutique (formerly Tamarack Dispensaries) in Marysville was also open Wednesday.
Owner Tamara Duggan said the phone at Tamarack was ringing off the hook on Wednesday, with people inquiring as to what was going on.
Like Earth’s Own Naturals, Tamarack Cannabis Boutique is going through the process of gaining a legal license.
She hopes that the license will be granted “soon”, and in the meantime, Tamarack has transitioned from medical dispensary to boutique and is open for business.
“It’s a whole new world, but we’re still in business and keeping regular hours,” she said.
Memberships, which were required for medical cannabis are no longer needed, and the public is welcome to stop by and ask any and all questions.
“The City has been wonderfully supportive since the get go,” Duggan said. “It’s just working through the process and providing all the necessary information needed for licensing.
“The President of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police said this week that because of legalization, they are not planning to shut down any shops, assuming people are in the process of licensing.”