For more information about the SellSafe program, please see the questions below. If the answer to your question isn't here, check the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) or SMART Programs Training Requirements pages. If you need more help, please contact us.

1. What is SellSafe Cannabis Staff Training?

The SellSafe program is a mandatory certification program designed to help licensed retail cannabis store staff understand how to sell legal cannabis responsibly.

SellSafe will help staff understand what their responsibilities are to their customers. The program also helps workers understand what Alberta's cannabis laws and AGLC's policies are so they can follow them. These rules are in place to help protect people working in the cannabis industry, their property, their customers, and the public from cannabis-related harms.

SellSafe does not include information on all cannabis laws and policies.

Licensed retail cannabis store staff are required to have SellSafe certification prior to applying to AGLC to be a Qualified Cannabis Worker.

2. Why was it created?

The SellSafe program is designed to help licensed retail cannabis store staff understand how to sell legal cannabis responsibly.

The goal of the program is to ensure that staff have appropriate training to educate customers about the potency of products and the risks associated with cannabis use. Staff must also be trained to uphold the rules around the purchase of cannabis, including checking customers' identification to make sure they are of legal age.

3. What are the benefits of having a SellSafe certificate?

The SellSafe program is a mandatory certification program designed to help licensed retail cannabis store staff understand how to sell legal cannabis responsibly.

SellSafe will help staff understand what their responsibilities are to their customers. The program also helps workers understand what Alberta's cannabis laws and AGLC's policies are so they can follow them.

SellSafe does not authorize retail cannabis workers to give medical advice. Customers who ask for help or information to use legal recreational cannabis for medical purposes should be referred to their doctor or other medical professional.

4. Who has to be SellSafe-certified?

SellSafe certification is mandatory for the following full- and part-time staff:

  • Licensed premises owners, managers, supervisors, retailers and cashiers;
  • Security staff (directly employed or contracted by the licensee); and
  • Direct supervisors of employees of a company contracted to provide security.

Sellsafe certification is also mandatory for managers, supervisors and all employees of a cannabis representative involved in the marketing, promotion and sales of a cannabis supplier's products.

SellSafe certification is not required for staff working full-time or part-time as cleaning staff in licensed premises.

Click here to see the certifications required for various positions in the liquor, gaming and retail cannabis industries, as well as the associated costs and timelines for each program.

5. When do I have to be certified?

Persons requiring SellSafe must be certified prior to applying for Qualified Cannabis Worker approval.

More information about SellSafe's policies is in Section 1.7 of the Retail Cannabis Store Handbook and Section 2.3 of the Cannabis Agency Handbook, online at aglc.ca.

6. Who does not need SellSafe certification?

SellSafe certification is not required for staff working full-time or part-time as cleaning staff in licensed premises.

More information about SellSafe's policies is in Section 1.7 of the Retail Cannabis Store Handbook and Section 2.3 of the Cannabis Agency Handbook, online at aglc.ca.

7. What happens if I do not comply?

Licensee staff must provide must provide proof of SellSafe certification at the request of an AGLC Inspector. Failure to present proof of SellSafe certification may result in disciplinary action. Proof of SellSafe certification includes:

  • Paper printed versions that have a QR code
  • The Personal Information page printed from the staff member's SMART account
  • Clear images of any of the above (i.e., image, photograph or screen shot) saved on the staff member's mobile device/phone).

Licensees with uncertified staff could face penalties such as a warning, fine, licence suspension or termination.

More information about SellSafe's policies is in Section 1.7 of the Retail Cannabis Store Handbook and Section 2.3 of the Cannabis Agency Handbook, online at aglc.ca.

8. What do I need to know after I'm certified?

An industry worker's certification will be placed into conditional status when an employee at a licensed premises is found to violate any of the following:

  • Section 90.05(a) GLCA: sell or provide cannabis to a person intoxicated by liquor or a drug;
  • Section 90.05(b) GLCA: permit a person intoxicated by liquor or a drug to use cannabis; and
  • Section 90.03(2)(3) GLCA: failure to ask for proof of age for those persons who appear to be under 25 years of age.

An industry worker's SellSafe certification will be immediately suspended if charged federally or provincially with the offence of giving, selling, or supplying cannabis to a minor.

  • Section 90.04 GLCA: give, sell, or supply cannabis to a minor.

More information is in Section 1.7 of the Retail Cannabis Store Handbook and Section 2.5 of the Cannabis Representative Handbook, online at aglc.ca.

Policy and program content may change after industry workers are certified. Licensee staff are responsible for reviewing the program content, Retail Cannabis Store Handbook or Cannabis Representative Handbook, online at aglc.ca to keep their knowledge current.

Licensees must keep a log of employees who are SellSafe-certified, including the following information:

  • Employee name as it appears on the certification card
  • SMART Programs registration number; and
  • Expiry date

Note: The information listed above may be kept in the same log as the Qualified Cannabis Worker log noted in Section 1.6.7. This log is subject to review by AGLC.

AGLC's liquor, gaming and cannabis policies are online at aglc.ca.

9. I have questions about my SellSafe certification. Where can I go to find more information?

More information is on the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) and Contact Us pages.

You can also contact SMART Programs office:

Phone: Toll-free in Alberta at 1-877-436-6336, Mondays through Fridays, from 8:15 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.
Fax: 780-651-7626, addressed to the attention of the SMART Programs.
Email: info@sellsafe.aglc.ca
Mail: SMART Programs
c/o AGLC
50 Corriveau Avenue
St. Albert, Alberta T8N 3T5
In Person: We're at the AGLC Head Office in St. Albert. Click on the map to find us.

Note: The SMART Programs office is closed on weekends, statutory holidays, and from December 24th through January 1st.