The groups behind Ontario’s first cannabis retail training certification revealed details of the program in Toronto on Wednesday.
The CannSell certificate will be mandatory for all managers, employees and licence holders planning to work in one of the province’s 25 brick-and-mortar pot shops when their doors open on April 1.
Lift & Co. — a technology company that says it “helps Canadians explore, understand and make better-informed decisions around cannabis” — developed the program in conjunction with MADD Canada. The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario commissioned it last year.
Those hoping to obtain a certificate will be required to take an online course and exam at a cost of $49.99. The course is designed to take an average learner about four hours, according to Nick Pateras, vice president of strategy at Lift & Co.
Participants get a maximum of two chances to score at least 80 per cent on the final exam before they are required to re-take each component of the program.
“The whole idea is that we are empowering them to deliver responsible sales,” he said.
Pateras added the certification is similar to the Smart Serve Ontario program that workers who serve alcohol are required to complete.
“Because we’ve had 95 years of prohibition, there is a lot of misinformation around cannabis. There are certain myths around its health benefits, maybe not a full understanding of the risks of cannabis consumption. We want to make sure we are conveying that when someone comes into a store and buys cannabis.”