Cannabis Production on the ALR

In July 2018, the provincial government amended the Agricultural Land Reserve Use, Subdivision and Procedure Regulation in order to designate the specific means of lawful cannabis production that are considered farm use in the ALR.

In section 2(2.5), the amendment identifies cannabis production as a farm use only in the cases that production is:

  • Outside in a field
  • In a structure with a base made entirely of soil
  • In a pre-existing structure, or a structure that is under construction, provided that the structure was, or is being, constructed for growing crops inside

As local governments cannot prohibit activities identified as a farm use (except under section 552 of the Local Government Act), the amendment allows for the types of cannabis production identified in section 2(2.5) to proceed anywhere in the ALR without application to the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC).

However, the amendment also has the effect of identifying all forms of cannabis production that are not identified above (i.e. new construction of cement-based buildings) as non-farm use – which allows local governments to prohibit or regulate this use and requires ALR land owners to make applications to the ALC for non-farm use.

The ALC has developed Information Bulletin 04: Cannabis Production in the ALR. This document provides detailed information on the recent regulatory changes and clarity on the procedures for non-farm use.

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