HOW-TO: Choose A Cannabis Consultant in 2021 To Setup & Open a Retail Dispensary in Ontario or the Greater Toronto Area

As a cannabis lawyer and consultant I will share with you some best practices in finding a consultant to help you through the Toronto & Ontario AGCO Cannabis Retail Store Dispensary Process in 2021.

There are many consultants that are out there that can assist you with your cannabis retail application.

Here are some of the best questions that someone can ask their prospective retail cannabis dispensary consultant(s) in Ontario.

There are many good consultants that are available to help, but also some that are relatively

I would estimate that more than 90% of my work is focused on setting Ontario cannabis retail stores and helping ensure that they stay compliant. Many other consultants focus on assisting with other licences, and there is no problem with that, but I want to let you know that I am dedicated to helping grow Ontario’s dedicated scene of independent and small business retail operators.

You should hire someone who has the requisite experience to jump through all of the hoops that the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario sets up for you, and can tackle problems head on.

1. Have they successfully opened up any AGCO-authorized retail stores in Ontario?

Absolutely! Some stores I have assisted: Cannaco in Milton, The Green Closet in Toronto, The Hi Class in Toronto, Good Cookie in Scarborough, and tens of other applicants.

2. Do they offer flat-fee pricing?

I have a very competitive flat-fee rate that gives you peace of mind. It doesn’t cover 100% of my expenses but its comes as to it as I can. I’m there every step of the way with you, from the time of incorporation to the day the AGCO authorizes you to open.

3. Can I get staff training and SOPs (standard operating procedures) for my cannabis retail store?

I have a comprehensive set of 55 Standard Operating Procedures that I have developed that are specifically for Ontario retail cannabis stores. It references Dutchie, Cova, Greenline, and OnFleet, which is the technology stack used by many retail cannabis stores in Toronto & Ontario. That is combined with up to 2 days of training of you and your staff! New for February 2021, the SOPs now include reference to Buddi, another e-commerce that is free of charge to retail stores.

4. Is initial product selection included?

Initial product selection is absolutely important. Using a wide variety of factors I assist in the selection of the initial product line that you will have in your cannabis retail store. My philosophy is you don’t need to have 1000s of SKUs in order to make everyone feel welcome – but you should stock a little bit for everyone while only focusing on brands that are trusted in the respective product classes.

5. Is the consultant a practicing lawyer?

Note that while consultants may have insight into the application process, they cannot provide legal advice if they are not a licensed lawyer. This means that you will pay for a lawyer in addition to your consultant, added costs that you probably don’t want to have to think about paying.

6. How does the consultant manage store security?

A good consultant knows the limits of their expertise. That’s why I partner with a well-respected cannabis security planning firm that charges just $1,000 for their comprehensive site-specific security plan. It’s an inexpensive and high-value security plan you can tell take to security integrators – you can even quote-shop to different integrators and go with the lowest cost with respect to installation/hardware costs!

Harrison Jordan, Ontario Cannabis Lawyer

Harrison Jordan Law Professional Corporation is a Cannabis Consulting and Law Firm assisting retail stores and AGCO Cannabis Licence Act applicants across the Greater Toronto Area (G.T.A.) & Ontario, from start to Pre-Opening Inspection to OPEN. He has successfully assisted stores from incorporation to operation. Call him at at 647-371-0032 or visit his website at