Health Cannabis opens shop on Water Street in St. John's

The exterior sign on one of Water Street's newest businesses reads HC Inc. The doors are locked and a paper notice reads "members only."

New marijuana business is for 'members only,' according to sign on locked front door

Pink Sugar Purple, one of the products on the reviews section of the Health Cannabis website. Health Cannabis has opened a storefront on Water Street in downtown St. John's. (Health Cannabis/Paula Gale/CBC)

A new business called Health Cannabis has taken over a vacant storefront on Water Street in downtown St. John's.

The minimal-looking business, with HC Inc. on its exterior, has a locked door and a sign that reads "members only," and directs people to a website to register for membership.

Inside, it smells like marijuana.

Minimalist-looking store has a locked door and a 'Members Only' sign posted. (Paula Gale/CBC)

The Health Cannabis website does not call the business a "dispensary" for medical marijuana and related products.

"Health Cannabis Inc. is a Canadian company focused on improving the quality of life for those living with chronic and terminal illnesses through the use of medical marihuana [sic]," the website states.

Health Cannabis has two other locations, in Etobicoke and Newmarket, Ont.

The Health Cannabis logo bears a striking, albeit green, resemblance to the Health Canada logo.

Anyone looking to become a member can register, once they provide identification, including a photo, and a prescription for medical marijuana.

People who visit the Health Cannabis page are also directed to several supplier sites, where a wide variety of marijuana strains and products can be selected.

Legal or not?

According to Health Canada, medical marijuana is not permitted to be sold in a dispensary — it must be delivered by Canada Post or courier.

Dozens of dispensaries across Canada have been opening recently due to changes with federal marijuana legislation. The dispensaries are not legal — at least, not yet — and in some cities police have been cracking down.

CBC News has put in a request for comment to the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary and RCMP.

A new Health Cannabis location has opened for business on Water Street in downtown St. John's. (Paula Gale/CBC)