Article byGlobal News
Without private cannabis companies and proper branding, the Ontario government’s plan to roll out the sale of marijuana won’t be able to compete with the current black market, advocates say.
The current plan includes plain packaging, which wouldn’t allow for a new user to get relevant information, along with LCBO-run stores, which could be few and far between.
That’s led some producers to worry that users will continue to go to illegal dealers to get their pot.
Dispensaries “on notice”
Dispensaries and cannabis market experts shot back over the past month, saying that turning away from a privatized retail model represents a “missed opportunity” for Ontario.
Rosalie Wyonch, an analyst with the C.D. Howe Institute echoes these claims.
“I see the choice to go with only Crown corporation retail as a missed opportunity because, in Ontario, there are a significant number of dispensaries already running,” said Wyonch.
“All the dispensaries that did open were operating illegally, but these were businesses that saw an opportunity and would have greatly benefited from private retail.”
The announcement came a warning to the dispensaries currently running that their time is almost up.
“If you operate one of these facilities, consider yourself on notice,” said Attorney General Yasir Naqvi.