British Columbia is home to a variety of licensed producers, innovative researchers and technology companies that support local economic development. They use advanced approaches to protect public health and the environment.
A regulated approach to cannabis production has many benefits for consumers, communities and businesses.
Benefits can include:
- Enhanced consumer safety
- Legitimacy for existing businesses
- Generation of economic development
The following company profiles are examples of cannabis businesses in B.C.
Companies selected are intended to show the variety of cannabis businesses operating in the province.
The following companies reflect a range of B.C. cannabis cultivators who have received either their standard or micro-cultivation licence from Health Canada.
Habitat Life is a micro-cultivator revolutionizing traditional cannabis production by combining the production of salmon with the growing of cannabis. Habitat Life operates a first-of-its-kind aquaponics facility, combining fish farming (aquaculture) and cannabis plant cultivation without the use of soil (hydroponics). This system relies on the fish generating waste in water tanks and the water being used for the cannabis plant beds as the fish waste acts as fertilizer. Clean water is captured through transpiration of the plants allowing Habitat to reuse the water.
Habitat's mission is to cultivate cannabis that is high quality, environmentally conscientious, and economically viable.
The Kootenay Outdoor Producer Co-op is a multi-stakeholder cooperative based in the Central Kootenay region of B.C. The Co-op was recently awarded its cultivation licences which allows them to grow cannabis outdoors. Growing outdoors has a lower environmental footprint as it requires less power, water, and infrastructure while the co-op business model allows opportunity for the promotion of local economic development.
Tantalus Labs designed and built Canada's first cannabis-tailored industrial greenhouse. The greenhouse was designed to reduce electricity demand relative to indoor production and enables pesticide free production. Tantalus combines this infrastructure with recaptured rainwater irrigation and quality assurance standards that meet the requirements set out by Health Canada.
Tantalus has successfully transitioned several operators formerly employed by the illicit market and are setting new standards on employee quality of life.
Tilray was founded in Canada and now has a global presence as a leader in cannabis research, cultivation, processing and distribution. Tilray supplies medicinal cannabis to five continents and is headquartered in Nanaimo. Company positions with Tilray include PhD research scientists, professional mangers, manufacturing executives, botanists, and horticulturalists. Within its first nine months of operation, Tilray’s Nanaimo location generated over $48 million in total economic output.
Broken Coast Cannabis was the fourth licensed producer in B.C. The company is known for its unique genetic profiles and hybrids stemming from many different genetic lines. Broken Coast is constantly looking to push the level of technology in cultivation, eliminating barriers within the grow process, and seeking out the best cultivars for their growing techniques.
Good Buds is a licensed craft cannabis company located in Salt Spring Island. The company was granted Canada's first outdoor cannabis cultivation licence by Health Canada. The company plant and harvest each plant by hand, and use raised garden beds with recycled soils instead of single-use pots to help create a craft product. Good Buds also uses recaptured water as part of their commitment to sustainability.
The following companies reflect cannabis ventures that are either created, managed, and/or developed by Indigenous people for the benefit of Indigenous people.
Orange Bridge Cannabis was the first licensed retail storefront owned by a First Nation in B.C. The Tseshaht First Nation opened their doors in the fall of 2019 and are located just outside of Port Alberni, on the highway to Tofino and Ucluelet.
Cannabis Testing and Extraction
The section reflects cannabis companies who are licensed by Health Canada and/or directly work with licensed companies on cannabis extraction technologies and processes.
Anandia is a licensed cannabis testing company that offers a full suite of testing services required by Health Canada, plus other value-add tests such as full cannabinoid, terpene, and flavonoid profiling. Anandia also maintains an IP portfolio of several technologies related to cannabis testing and biochemistry. This work requires employing high-skilled professionals at their state-of-the-art facility in Vancouver.
Nextleaf Solutions is a cannabis extraction technology company, developing methods and hardware for distilling THC and CBD oils. Their patented processes go beyond traditional crude extraction – implementing additional processing measures aimed at high standards of purity. The processes yield a tasteless, odourless cannabis concentrate, manufactured at scale, standardized for dose, and ready for infusion in value-add products.
The company has been awarded multiple government grants for research related to the cannabis industry. Grants have been given from the National Research Council of Canada, Sustainable Development Technology Canada, and two from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council.
Soma Labs Scientific designs and manufactures advanced extraction units in-house with the help of their engineering, scientific and research team. Their technology helps licensed growers, producers and processors develop extracts with high concentrations of target cannabinoids and help meet Health Canada contaminants standards.
Operating within a legal cannabis framework allows producers to work with Soma Labs and other engineering firms and equipment manufacturers. This collaboration ensures that new technologies and equipment are properly designed, safe to operate, reliable, and built-for-purpose, protecting operators and the surrounding community.
The Valens Company is a multi-licensed cannabis business that provides proprietary services including extractions, analytical testing, research, formulation and product development. Their facility is equipped with five types of extractions and multiple finished product offerings for its clients. The quality systems at Valens are constantly evolving to incorporate changing regulations and adapting to best practices as well as being compliant with Health Canada mandated Good Production Practices as well as the stringent Good Agricultural Production Practices and Good Manufacturing Practices.
If you consume cannabis, make sure you purchase cannabis from a licensed source only. For more information on where to purchase licensed non-medical cannabis visit B.C.'s Map of Cannabis Retail Stores in BC for a retailer nearest you or check out the BC Cannabis Stores online sales.
To identify licensed medical and non-medical cannabis suppliers visit Health Canada’s licensed cultivators, processors and sellers of cannabis under the Cannabis Act website.
You can identify legal cannabis by looking for the excise stamp on cannabis products (medical and non-medical):
For more information on how to safely consume cannabis visit Get Cannabis Clarity