Cannabis Production Worker Training & Recruitment Program (SAO)

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Looking for a Career in the Cannabis Industry?

“The cannabis industry has contributed $43.5 billion to Canada’s GDP – and $13.3 billion to Ontario’s GDP – since legalization … In Ontario alone, 31,000 jobs annually have been sustained since legalization. From an economic perspective, it seems clear the cannabis industry has been a great success, with more to come as it continues to grow.”2021 Deloitte report     

Program Description

Cannabis industry workersThrough our no-cost Cannabis Production Worker Training & Recruitment Program, you’ll gain the skills and knowledge you need to succeed in this growing field. Our program is designed to help you gain the experience needed to land your first job in the cannabis industry.

The Cannabis Production Worker Training & Recruitment Program provides job seekers with industry training that enhances skillsets, productivity, safety, and workplace communication, while also increasing job prospects and job mobility for workers in the cannabis sector.

Now is the perfect time to pursue a career in cannabis production. You’ll be part of an exciting and rapidly growing industry – one that offers plenty of opportunities for growth and advancement.

Program Details

In addition to pre-employment, safety and technical training, the program includes knowledge of the Cannabis Act under Health Canada regulations and guidelines. 

Training includes, but is not limited to:

  • Health & Safety Training
  • Cannabis Legislation & Regulations (including Cannabis Act)
  • Cannabis Production: Farm Labour, Trimming, etc.
  • Quality Control & Product Packaging
  • Workplace Communication
  • Industry Exploration & Career Planning
  • Paid Industry Work Placement
trimming cannabis buds cannabis harvest

Hours and Course Schedule

  • Full-time hours are required (30-40 hours per week).
  • The program will run Monday to Friday, and hours will vary between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. for the duration of the training.


  • There is no cost to participate in this program. 
  • Participants will be responsible for personal transportation to and from training sites, as well as food and living expenses.


  • Online workshops will be delivered where necessary.
  • Jobs and paid work placements will be available across the province upon request.

Program Benefits

  • Work and learn with industry experts in the legal cannabis space
  • No expensive tuition fees – training costs you nothing!
  • No college, university or previous experience needed to participate
  • Local job placement assistance at the end of the program in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area and surrounding communities
  • Get qualified and licensed to work as a cannabis production worker at the end of the six-week program
  • Continuous support with landing your new job in the cannabis sector at no additional cost


  • Must be eligible to work in Canada
  • Currently unemployed, working less than 20 hours per week, or in a precarious (or unsteady) work situation
  • Available to participate in full-time hours (minimum 30 hours per week) for the program’s duration
  • A clean criminal background check is required (you won’t need to provide this until asked)

Program Application

The application window for the Hamilton and Southwest Ontario cohorts has closed. You can still sign up for the wait list for potential future programming in Hamilton and Southwest Ontario, pending funding approval for 2023.

Sign up for the Hamilton & Southwest Ontario (London) Waitlist
Want to join a cohort in 2023? Sign up here and we'll send you our 2023 application dates once they are announced.
Sign up for the Waitlist
Sign up for the Hamilton Waitlist
Join our next cohort in Hamilton.
Sign up for the Hamilton Waitlist
Sign up for the Southwest Ontario (London) Waitlist
Join our next cohort in Southwest Ontario.
Sign up for the Southwest Ontario Waitlist

Questions About the Cannabis Production Worker Training Program?

Contact us at or 416-821-3487

Information for Employers

Are you an employer or industry professional interested in participating in the Cannabis Production Worker Training & Recruitment Program? We invite you to participate in a number of ways:

  • Contribute to curriculum development
  • Join the Advisory Committee (with representatives from education, government and the employer community)
  • Hire or mentor a student
  • Appear as a guest (virtually or in person)
  • Lead a site visit/tour of your operations (virtually or in person)
  • Participate in interviews

Benefits to Employer Partners

  • Save time and money on training entry-level workers by tapping into government funds to create an industry training program
  • Increase the productivity and efficiency of new workers through cross-training for practical, entry-level roles
  • Promote your organization through guest appearances, interviews, and site tours
  • Gain access to a pool of skilled, passionate job seekers

Contact us today to learn more about becoming an employer partner!

Email: | Phone: 416-821-3487

asian epidemiologist in hazmat suit and respirator

Funders and Partners

The Cannabis Production Worker Training & Recruitment Program is made possible through the Skills Development Fund (SDF), with funding provided by the Government of Ontario and the Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development. As a sector-focused workforce development pilot, the SDF supports partnerships that bring together employers with employment and training providers. The goal is to develop a pool of job-ready, skilled workers that meet employers’ workforce development needs.

Employment Ontario tri-logo

This Employment Ontario project is funded in part by the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario.