A Standard Processing Licence is required for a facility that is processing more than 600 kg of dried flower (unless it is produced by a micro-cultivation licence on the same site) per year and has a higher requirement for physical security in comparison with the Micro Processor.
Otherwise, this type of licence is similar to a Micro Processor Licence and can be achieved for a facility that also holds a Nursery, Micro (or Standard) Cultivation, and/or a Research and Development Licence.
In Canada, currently only cannabis oil (liquid, soft gels) is permitted as a finished product. Some licensed producers have launched “kit products” which provide the consumer with cannabis oil as well as something to combine it with (e.g., cream + cannabis oil = cannabis cream), which is permitted. However, at present edibles, concentrates, beverages, and cannabis health products are not permitted for manufacturing or resale.
To achieve a Standard Processor Licence, CCI carefully prepares an application package (with supporting documentation) which is submitted to the Office of Medical Cannabis at Health Canada. CCI provides strong recommendations around the proposed site and floor plan, physical security design, Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for the operations of the facility, security clearances for key personnel, guidance for notifying local authorities, quality assurance reports, recruitment of the Quality Assurance Person (QAP) and ongoing communication with Health Canada post-submission.
Note that a Standard Processor requires a Quality Assurance Person (QAP) on staff with appropriate qualifications or experience from highly regulated sectors (e.g., pharmaceutical, food, tobacco, alcohol), which is not a requirement for the Micro (or Standard) Cultivation Licence on its own. The Standard Processor and Micro Processor require a Head of Security.
Health Canada charges an application fee for all licence types. Currently $3,277 for standard licences and sale for medical purposes. The micro licences and nursery licences are $1,638. The same fee is payable for one or more licences made at the same time.
The timeframe to achieve a Standard Processor Licence is still unknown, as Health Canada has not set performance targets for application processing, but it is expected to follow similar patterns observed previously under the Licensed Producer (LP) licensing within the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR) (i.e., at minimum 18 months from submission to licence). The Standard Processor Licence is the current-day equivalent of the former LP from the ACMPR, except it does not necessarily have to be coupled with a cultivation licence now.
It should also be noted that Health Canada does not provide a “ready to build” letter or authorization ahead of facility construction, which means that the construction or renovation of the facility would be completed before or during the application review period.
Cannabis Compliance Inc is accepting new clients for the preparation and submission of Standard Processor Licences, and has a 100% success rate with previously submitted applications under the former ACMPR regulations. With a team of over 60 full time salary employees, CCI is the world’s largest professional cannabis consulting firm, with expertise from pharmaceutical, food, alcohol, natural health products and medical device industries. Contact us today to start a conversation around how CCI can help you achieve a Micro Processor Licence.