The Ontario Cannabis store will verify the age of customers by forcing people to say that they’re 19 years old three different times.
But the OCS won’t ask for proof.
Canada Post, however, will need to see ID for age verification of online sales of cannabis upon delivery, if the recipient looks as though they’re younger than 25 years old.
At a briefing for media on Thursday, the OCS gave a look at what their website will look like starting Oct. 17, when recreational cannabis is legalized in Canada.
In Ontario, customers will only be able to legally purchase cannabis through the online store, until private retailers are licensed and established.
When users log on to the site starting Oct. 17, they will first have to enter their birthday on a drab black-and-white page to confirm that they’re 19 years old. They’ll then be taken to a second page to check a box to confirm that they’re 19.
Customers will have to check a third age verification box when they checkout with their product, but they won’t have to provide any proof.
Canada Post will deliver the product, and will check for ID. No packages will be left on doorsteps, or with apartment building concierges, but somebody else in the residence can sign on behalf of the customer. Canada Post is supposed to check ID for anybody who looks under 25.
At first, only VISA and Mastercard will be accepted as payment methods, and the OCS won’t say what will appear on the credit card statement, except to say that it won’t include the word “cannabis.”
Shipping will be a flat fee of $5 and the OCS said that they anticipate delivery will take 1-3 days.
In press materials, the OCS said that the site will limit users to purchasing 30 grams of cannabis or equivalent per transaction — in line with federal law on how much a person can posess in public.
The site demonstration clearly reflected a work-in-progress. Officials showed a product called “Easy Cheesy” selling for $7.95 per gram, but the OCS said that’s only a placeholder price, and actual prices are not available yet.
Officials would not speak about any of this on-the-record, and cameras were not allowed into the room for the briefing. Communications officials tried to cut off questions from media 10 minutes before the scheduled end of the briefing.
They also wouldn’t answer any questions about distribution, or the location or setup of their warehouse, citing security reasons.
Emphasizing privacy concerns, the OCS said that users won’t need to set up an account on the site — in fact, they won’t be able to set one up.
When asked, they initially indicated that there will be no restrictions on where the product can be delivered, but when specifically asked if somebody could get their drugs delivered to their workplace, the officials said they’d have to double-check and clarify.
In the briefing, the OCS emphasized that the website will have a lot of educational materials about cannabis, THC, CBD, and its effects. In fact, at several points the design of the website seems to push users towards the educational sections instead of to the purchasing side.
In addition to dried marijuana flowers, the site will sell oils and pre-rolled joints, plus accessories like bongs, pipes, grinders, and other gear for smoking.
Initially, the OCS is anticipating having about 70 strains of cannabis available for sale, but they said they hope to get that up to 150 variants eventually.
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