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Legal Cannabis in Alberta: What You Should Know

Published on October 12, 2018 · Last updated July 28, 2020
(Elysse Feigenblatt/Leafly)

Cannabis will be legal for adults throughout Canada starting on Oct. 17, 2018. But you have a lot of questions. We have answers: Where to buy it, which stores are open, age limits, purchase limits, what’s actually on the shelves, where it’s legal to consume, and more.

Retail Sales in Alberta

Cannabis will be sold in privately-owned stores starting October 17, 2018. The province of Alberta will sell cannabis products through an online store to those 18 years of age or older.

Legal Age in Alberta: 18

Each province sets its own legal age, as with alcohol. In Alberta, the minimum age for purchase and possession is 18.

I’m New to Cannabis. Help!

We’ve got you covered. Leafly maintains the world’s most accurate database of cannabis information, and it’s here at your fingertips. Think of us as your cannabis library. To get started, check out our Cannabis 101 page, which contains articles and how-to guides prepared by cannabis experts writing in plain English, not confusing jargon.

What Can I Buy in Alberta?

Private stores will be allowed to sell a range of dried cannabis (aka flower or buds), pre-rolls, cannabis oils, capsules, and seeds for home growing, from 13 licensed producers. Edibles are not yet allowed, but are expected to enter the market nationwide in October 2019.

Will Alberta Stores Be Open on Oct. 17?

Yes. Private-run cannabis retail stores will be permitted to open October 17, 2018, with at least 17 retail outlets successfully obtaining the interim cannabis licenses needed to open that day, with many of those locations in Edmonton.

Where Can I Buy It?

We’ve got a page devoted to up-to-the-minute store location information here: Recreational Cannabis Stores in Alberta.

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All About Alberta Online Sales

Online sales of cannabis products will be undertaken by the Alberta government on this website. Remember, minors are prohibiting from purchasing.

Possession Limits in Alberta

Those 18 and up can possess up to one ounce (30 grams) of dried cannabis in public.

Legal Age in Alberta: 18

Cannabis transported in a motor vehicle must not be within reach of anyone in a vehicle.

Purchase Limits

Each customer is limited to the federal possession limit, which is 30 grams of dried cannabis, 30 cannabis seeds, or an equivalent amount of cannabis oil.

Can My Kids Enter the Store With Me?

Retailers will not be permitted to allow entry to anyone under the age of 18.

Consumption Restrictions in Alberta

Cannabis use will be generally allowed in public spaces where tobacco smoking and vaping are permitted. Smoking and vaping of non-medical marijuana will not be permitted anywhere tobacco is restricted is restricted, in addition to on playgrounds, sports/playing fields, skateboard and bicycle parks, zoos, outdoor theatres, outdoor pools, and in motor vehicles. Consumption of cannabis at authorized cannabis retail stores is illegal.

Home-Grow Is Allowed

The federal Cannabis Act allows adults to cultivate up to four plants per residence, and the province of Alberta is no different. However, rental agreements and condo bylaws may restrict individuals from cultivating cannabis.

Crossing Provincial Borders

Can you transport cannabis from one province to another? Yes. But you must abide by the federal public possession limit, which is 30 grams of dried cannabis per person. Important: Do not attempt to transport cannabis across any international border. Cannabis is legal in Washington state, Vermont, Alaska, and Maine, but the border crossing is a federal zone. And cannabis remains federally illegal in the United States.

Can I Fly With Cannabis?

Yes, as long as you remain within Canada and abide by the possession limits of the departure province and the arrival province. But please be mindful. The fragrance of cannabis flower can be powerful, and not everybody enjoys it in the close confines of an airplane cabin.

The Cannabis Supply Chain in Alberta

The provincially-run Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Alberta will act as the middleman in all cannabis commerce within the province. Private licensed producers (LPs) will deliver their packaged and branded products.

The Alberta Provincial Laws

Bill 26: An Act to Control and Regulate Cannabis was introduced Nov. 16, 2017 and passed Nov. 30. This legislation gives the AGLC authority for oversight, compliance and retail licensing, enables online sales, and creates restrictions on youth possession and public consumption.

Caps on Cannabis Stores in Alberta

No person or entity can hold more than 15 per cent of retail cannabis licenses in the province.

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Harrison Jordan
Harrison Jordan
Harrison Jordan is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto and enjoys reading and writing about the regulatory affairs of cannabis in Canada and around the world.
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