News / Edmonton

'People can be really excited about these roles': Cannabis salaries go public

Cannabis at Work survey shows pay is on par with other industries in Canada; Edmonton founder says they're likely to increase with demand

Alison McMahon, Chair of Women Grow's Edmonton Chapter and Founder/CEO of Cannabis at Work.

Kevin Tuong / Metro File

Alison McMahon, Chair of Women Grow's Edmonton Chapter and Founder/CEO of Cannabis at Work.

An Edmonton business has released the first glimpse into Canada’s cannabis sector salaries, and while most are not rolling in green yet, one expert says their paycheques are likely to get higher.

A survey released this week by Cannabis at Work analyzing annual salaries in ten benchmark positions from eight major licensed producers found pay is on par with similar jobs in other industries.

“I think that people can be really excited about these roles, in terms of, there’s lots of opportunity for transferable skills,” said Cannabis at Work founder and CEO Alison McMahon.

“If you’re an HR manager in another sector, there’s going to be opportunities to be an HR manager in this sector – and you are going to be looking at jobs that are comparable to what you’re used to making.”

The midpoint salary for a customer care provider in the cannabis sector is $40,000.

On the high end, senior accountants are making an average of $86,000 and some upwards of $98,000.

Quality Assurance Person is one of the highest paying positions, but that one comes with a specific set of requirements mandated by Health Canada – including a bachelor’s degree in a science-based topic and similar experience in pharmaceutical or food production.

McMahon said the survey demonstrates that the cannabis industry is maturing quickly in Canada, and noted salaries are likely to increase.

“As we approach legalization, there is going to be a lot more demand for talent in this sector and I think a lot more excitement around people entering this sector,” she said.

“There’s going to be a significant amount of demand for talent that is likely going to drive up salaries at that point.”

Companies that participated in the survey include 7ACRES, Aphria, Aurora, Bonify, Emblem, Hydropothecary, Maricann, and Organigram.

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