Article by Jessica Galang, Mobile Syrup
After the Liberal government announced plans to legalize recreational pot use next spring, what started out as initial excitement turned into confusion as marijuana dispensaries started popping up across Toronto under the guise of providing more options for medical marijuana users.
While police shut down many of them, for medical marijuana patients, dispensaries were a welcome change from the inconvenient way they used to obtain their prescription.
Currently, patients have to receive a prescription, called an authorization, from a doctor that says how much marijuana — and at what strength — they can access per month, which they then have to mail to a licensed producer. Only then can they purchase the prescription online from a single licensed producer.
It’s a problem that the team at Toronto-based PopRX — which allows users to manage medication through their phone and receive prescriptions within 24 hours — feels that they can tackle. The company is spinning off its software to launch a new product Herbsy, an on-demand marketplace platform connecting patients to licensed producers. The platform is available across Canada, and like PopRX, promises same-day delivery for medical marijuana patients. PopRX will continue to function independently of Herbsy.
“We’re still not totally pivoting from our core competency, but it’s just another opportunity as we see it. PopRX has allowed us to have a distribution network of pharmacy delivery across Canada,” said Ali Esmail, CEO and founder of PopRX. “We’re just a tech provider, so we’re not doing the delivery, and at no point in time do we touch the money or the product or the marijuana, so there’s no legal issue.”