Cannabis Legalization and Regulation
 

Frequently asked questions

What is cannabis? How is it used?

Please see www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/drugs-medication/cannabis/about.html for information on cannabis and health information related to cannabis.

How will legal cannabis be sold in Manitoba?

Manitoba will use a hybrid public/private model for legal cannabis, meaning that Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries will purchase cannabis from licensed producers and deliver or arrange for delivery of the product to privately operated retail cannabis stores.

When will I be able to legally purchase cannabis?

The Canadian government introduced Bill C-45, an Act respecting cannabis, in the House of Commons on April 13, 2017. In December 2017, Manitoba introduced Bill 11, The Safe and Responsible Retailing of Cannabis Act (Liquor and Gaming Control Act and Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries Corporation Act Amended). Once the federal and Manitoba laws are in force, Manitobans will be able to purchase cannabis. For more information and updates, please see www.canada.ca/en/services/policing/justice/legalization-regulation-marijuana.html.

Where will I be able to legally purchase cannabis?

On February 16, 2018, the Manitoba government announced the conditional acceptance of proponents derived from a public Request for Proposals process. The successful proponents who may sell non-medical cannabis in Manitoba are: Manitoba cannabis producer Delta 9 Cannabis and Ontario producer Canopy Growth Corp.; National Access Cannabis, which currently operates medical cannabis access clinics in Manitoba; Tokyo Smoke, which operates coffee-shop-themed cannabis accessory stores in Toronto and Calgary; and a consortium led by Avana Canada of Ontario.

Retail operations are anticipated to open once the federal and provincial legislation comes into force. For more information, see Cannabis use in Manitoba.

How do I become a cannabis retailer in Manitoba?

The Manitoba government is committed to regulating the cannabis industry in Manitoba using competitive processes for new opportunities and by supporting a licensing structure that allows for participation within a regulated environment. A retailer’s willingness to support social responsibility initiatives and their capacity to provide thoughtful information to consumers about this unique adult-oriented product are also key considerations.

Under Bill 11, The Safe and Responsible Retailing of Cannabis Act, the Liquor and Gaming Authority (LGA) will regulate Manitoba’s non-medical cannabis industry, while the Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries Corporation (MBLL) will administer central order processing from, and manage distribution to, authorized retailers. The private sector will operate all retail locations in Manitoba and all cannabis supply will be sourced through MBLL. Private sector retailers must meet licensing requirements imposed by LGA and comply with all provincial regulations and municipal bylaws in order to open and operate a non-medical cannabis retail store.

For further updates on retailing cannabis in Manitoba, visit the Cannabis Retail Framework and follow @mbgov and @mbgovbusiness on Twitter.

Do the same Manitoba rules and regulations for the purchase, storage, distribution and retail of cannabis apply to First Nation communities?

Yes, Manitoba licensing rules and regulations for the purchase, storage, distribution and retail of cannabis will also apply on Manitoba First Nation communities.

What will remain illegal in Manitoba after cannabis legalization?

In addition to restrictions under federal legislation, there will also be restrictions under Manitoba’s provincial legislation. For example, smoking or vaping cannabis in outdoor public places, enclosed public places and indoor workplaces will be prohibited, and driving under the influence of cannabis or consuming cannabis in a vehicle will remain illegal. Exceptions to the prohibition on smoking or vaping cannabis in outdoor public places may be specified by regulation under The Non-Smokers Health Protection and Vapour Products Act.  Restrictions on how cannabis may be transported in a vehicle, and limits for possession will also remain in place.

For more information, see Cannabis use in Manitoba.

What are the age restrictions for cannabis?

After consultations with Manitobans, the Manitoba government set a legal age of 19 for the use, purchase and possession of non-medical cannabis.

What measures will the Manitoba government set to protect against underage purchases?

The Liquor, Gaming and Cannabis Control Act prohibits youth under the age of 19 from possessing or consuming cannabis.  It is also an offence to provide cannabis to a young person and to provide identification to a young person for the purpose of purchasing cannabis or entering an age-restricted cannabis store. 

Retail cannabis stores holding age-restricted licences must not permit young persons to enter the store.  Retail cannabis stores holding a controlled-access licence may allow young persons to enter the store, but cannabis must not be visible or accessible.  Regulations under The Liquor, Gaming and Cannabis Control Act will set out the types of identification required to verify age.

Fines for youth possession and consumption will be established by regulation under The Provincial Offences Act. They will mirror those currently in place for youth possession and consumption of alcohol; the current fine for youth found in possession of liquor is $672. 18-year-olds will be subjected to the same fines for possession as 12- to 17-year-olds.

What will the consequence be for driving under the influence of cannabis?

The proposed Impaired Driving Offences Act responds to the impaired driving provisions in the federal government’s Bill C-46. It introduces provincial sanctions for drivers who fail oral fluid drug screening devices and for drivers who commit one of the new Criminal Code offences that will be created in Bill C-46. The Impaired Driving Offences Act establishes tough provincial sanctions meant to prevent persons from getting behind the wheel under the influence of cannabis.

Proposed amendments to The Drivers and Vehicles Act and The Highway Traffic Act would include new administrative driver’s licence suspensions for drug impaired driving. The Impaired Driving Offences Act will create a roadside driver’s licence suspension ranging from 3 days to 60 days for drivers who fail an approved drug screening device test; drivers licence suspensions of 6 months for a first conviction and one year for subsequent convictions for the low blood/drug offence; and apply the same pre-conviction and post-conviction sanctions for alcohol impaired drivers to the new Criminal Code high blood/drug level and mixed alcohol and drug offences. Beginner drivers would also be prohibited from driving if they fail a roadside drug screening test.

Where can I smoke cannabis, once legal?

The Non-Smokers Health Protection and Vapour Products Act will prohibit smoking and vaping cannabis in outdoor public places once non-medical use of the drug is legalized, such as:

  • streets and sidewalks;
  • parks and beaches;
  • school grounds;
  • restaurant patios and decks;
  • the grounds of health-care facilities; and
  • any additional places that may be specified by regulation.

Exceptions to this prohibition may be specified by regulation under the Act. The changes build on The Cannabis Harm Prevention Act, which amended The Non-Smokers Health Protection and Vapour Products Act to prohibit smoking or vaping of cannabis in enclosed public places, indoor workplaces and other areas, with the exception of designated rooms in a hospital’s palliative care unit or an end-of-life hospice.

How much will cannabis cost?

Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries (MBLL) is in the process of securing supply from Health Canada-licensed cannabis producers. Manitoba's retailers, who are required to purchase non-medical cannabis from these licensed producers through MBLL, will set prices based on their business plans, operational costs, supply costs, etc., just like any other private retailer of a legally saleable product would.

Will store-bought legal cannabis will priced the same as street-based illegal cannabis?

The intent is that pricing will be competitive with the black market. Manitoba’s private cannabis retailers will set their own prices in accordance with their business plans, like any other retail business in Manitoba.

Will there be retail locations across Manitoba?

Eventually, yes. The Manitoba government is working with the four successful proponents to determine how many retail locations they will open and in which communities they will open.

Will there be retail locations on First Nation communities?

Yes, it is anticipated that once an engagement process between the Manitoba government and First Nation leadership has been completed, retail stores will be set up on First Nations communities wishing to host the stores.

Will cannabis stores also sell alcohol?

No. Cannabis and alcohol will not be sold alongside each other in Manitoba. This is consistent with the recommendations of the Government of Canada's Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation.

Can I grow my own cannabis?

The Safe and Responsible Retailing of Cannabis Act prohibits growing marijuana at home in Manitoba. For more information, please see news.gov.mb.ca/news/?archive=&item=43133.

Once legal, can I transport cannabis across the United States border?

See travel.gc.ca/travelling/health-safety/drugs for federal government information on alcohol, drugs and travel.

Who will respond to improper cannabis use?

Manitoba police agencies will enforce cannabis use laws.

How will cannabis use when operating a vehicle be regulated?

The proposed cannabis legislation will provide for significant changes to The Highway Traffic Act and related legislation to ensure police agencies are equipped to deal with drug-impaired drivers.

Can employees come to work high on non-medical cannabis?

While non-medical cannabis use will be legal under federal and provincial legislation and regulation, The Workplace Safety and Health Act maintains that employers have a duty to ensure a workplace is reasonably free of risk to worker safety and health. It is up to each employer, for each workplace, to determine appropriate conduct and policy procedures related to cannabis, just as many employers already do with alcohol. For more information, please consult the Workplace Safety and Health Branch at 204-957-SAFE (204-945-7233). Information on drug and alcohol testing in the workplace from the Manitoba Human Rights Commission is available at www.manitobahumanrights.ca/v1/education-resources/resources/drug-alcohol-testing-in-the-workplace.html.