Alberta cannabis regulator allows pot shops to take down window coverings

Alberta’s cannabis regulator will allow pot shops to take down window coverings after a spate of robberies.

Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis Commission (AGLC) says it has removed portions of its retail cannabis store handbook that prohibit pot products from being visible from the exterior of shops.

In a letter sent to retailers on Tuesday, the AGLC says the move was prompted by a “significant rise” in robberies at licensed pot retailers in recent months, in particular in Calgary.

It says use of violence and weapons has occurred in some of the robberies and the AGLC was concerned for the safety of staff, customers and responding police officers.

The letter says its new policy ensures it is not inadvertently contributing to stores being targeted due to a lack of visibility. It warned shops against using the change to replace window coverings with outward-facing promotions.

High Tide Inc., which owns pot shop chain Canna Cabana, says it welcomes the policy change.

“Complying with this regulation meant that most licensed cannabis stores in the province have been forced to black out exterior windows making them prime targets for criminal elements,” said senior vice-president of corporate and public affairs Omar Khan.

“Today’s news is a win for our employees’ safety, and our ability to continue pushing back against illicit market operators.”

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