Legalization for adults is here

Legalization for adults is here

As of October 17, 2018, non-medical cannabis is legal in British Columbia for adults who are 19 years of age or older.

Why legalize cannabis?

The new legal framework takes a public health approach to cannabis legalization and regulation. The new laws will help to:

  • Better prevent minors from accessing non-medical cannabis
  • Displace the illegal cannabis market
  • Protect public health and safety with product quality and safety requirements for cannabis

Learn more about important health and safety information on cannabis use.

What can I buy and how much?

In BC, adults age 19 years or older will be able to purchase non-medical cannabis in the following formats:

  • Dried cannabis (flower)
  • Pre-rolls
  • Oils that comply with federal requirements
  • Cannabis seeds

Adults are able to purchase up to 30 grams of cannabis in-store or online and can legally possess up to this limit of dried cannabis (or equivalent) in public. All cannabis products will be sourced from federally licensed producers. Cannabis accessories will also be available.

Where can I purchase cannabis products?

In BC, people aged 19 or older can purchase legal cannabis from BC Cannabis Stores and licensed private retail stores, both online and in store.

Where can I smoke or vape cannabis?

In BC, cannabis smoking and vaping is prohibited everywhere tobacco smoking and vaping are prohibited, including playgrounds, sports fields, skate parks, and other places where minors commonly gather. Cannabis smoking and vaping is also prohibited in school properties and in vehicles.

Smoking cannabis is not recommended. Smoking cannabis may increase the risk of developing respiratory infections or chronic cough. Do not smoke or vaporize cannabis in the presence of minors.

You must respect the laws of the province, territory or Indigenous community you are in, whether you are a visitor or live there. Local governments may also pass bylaws to regulate the use of cannabis locally. Check with your local government for more information.

Learn more about BC’s approach to health and public safety.

What are the short and long-term effects?

Like alcohol and tobacco, cannabis may pose a number of health risks, both short and long-term.

Cannabis use affects the way the brain functions. This includes impacts on attention, memory and learning.

Every time cannabis is used it can:

  • Impair your ability to drive safely or operate equipment
  • Make it harder to learn and remember things
  • Affect mood and feelings
  • Affect mental health

Using cannabis regularly (daily or almost daily) and over a long period of time (several months or years) can:

  • Hurt the lungs and make it harder to breathe
  • Affect mental health
  • Make you physically dependent or cause cannabis-use disorder

The younger you are when you begin cannabis use and the more often and the longer you use it, the more likely that it will have a bigger impact on your brain.

What can I expect from BC Cannabis Stores?

BC Cannabis Stores reflect the commitment by the BC Liquor Distribution Branch and the Provincial Government to protect public health and safety and keep the criminal element out of cannabis. Visitors to BC Cannabis Stores will be greeted by highly trained staff, a distinctly West Coast design and social responsibility messaging.

What else do I need to know? will regularly share up-to-date, fact-based features about safe and responsible use, health risks, and updates to legal and policy decisions.

Click here to learn more about the Cannabis Act.


Know the facts:

Remember, what works for others may not work for you. Educating yourself and cautious experimentation will help you find your way.


For additional cannabis resources, please visit Health Canada.
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