Cannabis store opens in Fort St. James

Rural Leaf Cannabis is located in Fort St. James at Unit 2, 470 Stuart Drive West. (Alfred Schaefer photo)Rural Leaf Cannabis is located in Fort St. James at Unit 2, 470 Stuart Drive West. (Alfred Schaefer photo)
Fort St. James is the fourth location for Rural Leaf Cannabis which is open seven days a week near Overwaitea Foods. (Alfred Schaefer photo)Fort St. James is the fourth location for Rural Leaf Cannabis which is open seven days a week near Overwaitea Foods. (Alfred Schaefer photo)

Fort St. James is now home to a cannabis store.

Rural Leaf Cannabis opened its doors Saturday, Dec. 18, near Overwaitea Foods on Stuart Drive.

The soft opening came more than seven months after a public hearing in which Mayor and Council supported the Smithers-based company’s application to the BC Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch.

“It’s been a long time coming, and it seems like the community is very happy,” said Rural Leaf Cannabis chief operating officer Alfred Schaefer.

“Everyone I have talked to seems pretty stoked, so looking forward to meeting some people from around town and being part of the community.”

Read More: Rural Leaf Cannabis wants to set up shop in Fort St James

Flooding in B.C.’s south and the COVID-19 pandemic meant some delay in opening the space that was once a bakery.

The cannabis dispensary offers a variety of products, including dried flowers, pre-rolls, edibles and accessories.

Currently three full-time and one part-time staff are employed.

Fort St. James marks the fourth location for Rural Leaf Cannabis which operates dispensaries in Smithers, Houston and Valemount.

“We’re always looking around,” Schaefer said of potential locations.

“We tend to go for communities that are not served or underserved, and there’s a lot that don’t have access to legal cannabis.”

Read More: Pot holes: Uneven distribution of cannabis stores a challenge for industry


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