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5 Cannabis Store Security Measures Required by Law

Cannabis store owners have a lot to consider before opening their shops, but it's essential that security does not become an afterthought.Providing protection for your inventory...

5 Cannabis Store Security Measures Required by Law

Cannabis store owners have a lot to consider before opening their shops, but it’s essential that security does not become an afterthought.

Providing protection for your inventory, staff and customers is of course a vital priority for any shop owner. But also, it’s against the law to go without such protection. Local laws require you to implement a range of cannabis store security measures before can open your doors to the public.

In this post, we look at some of those requirements in closer detail to help you identify the right solutions for your store.

Cannabis Store Security: What the Laws Say

Each of Canada’s provinces and territories have their own set of regulations for how cannabis is sold and consumed. For the purposes of this post, we’ll be looking specifically at Ontario, whose laws provide a good framework for cannabis store security.

Ontario’s laws are set forth under the Cannabis Licence Act, 2018 (CLA) and Regulation 468/18, which is regulated by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO).

Here’s a quick overview of the rules regarding store security:

1) Stores must have video surveillance

The law dictates that “a secure, high-resolution surveillance system must be in place at all times.”

Additionally, it matters where your cameras are located and what they capture:

  • Cameras must capture the interior and exterior of the cannabis store 24 hours a day, including entrances & exits, pickup/delivery areas, sales floor, storage and point-of-sale areas.
  • All video recordings must be retained for 30 days or more.
  • Store owners are responsible for making sure these cameras are “functioning properly at all times.”

2) Store access must be secure

The CLA states that “all points of access to the premises must be secure and protected against unauthorized access.”

While the rules do not go into details here, cannabis store owners may want to consider measures such as:

  • Heavy-duty, commercial-grade locks
  • Access control systems
  • Entry systems and intercoms
  • Security bars for doors & windows
  • High-strength window film
  • Monitored alarm systems and glass-break detectors

3) Cannabis storage must be secure

Wherever cannabis is stored or handled, it must remain secure at all times and be accessible only to store employees.

The law specifies that this applies to every aspect of storage, including:

  • Display containers
  • Point of sale
  • Receipt of product
  • Destruction of product
  • Return of product to producer or to the Ontario Cannabis Retail Corporation

4) Cannabis can’t be visible from outside the store

Laws require cannabis store owners to ensure that “cannabis and accessories are not visible from the exterior of the premises.”

The store layout can partially solve this challenge. However, licensees may also want to consider additional security measures, such as tinted window film and other coverings that prevent people from seeing products from outside the store.

5) Display containers must be secure

Stores are permitted to use “sensory display containers” that allow customers to see and smell cannabis.

However, these cases must be kept locked and tamper-proof to prevent customers from actually touching the cannabis.

Choosing the right containers, with secure locking mechanisms, is critical for store owners to remain compliant.

Need help with your cannabis store security?

Contact our experts at Protection Plus for more information on security solutions that can protect your cannabis store and keep you in compliance with all applicable laws.

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