Article by Addison Herron-Wheeler, High Times
Canada is already miles ahead of the U.S. when it comes to federal legalization of cannabis, something America is still weighing and discussing, and now Canada has taken another step towards normalizing cannabis by offering gift cards in some Circle K locations.
To be specific, the locations are for Fire & Flower dispensary, a well-known dispensary chain in Canada, and they’re being sold at multiple, third-party retailers, one of the most noteworthy being Circle K, a gas station frequented by just about everyone at some point, for some reason or another. The locations are all in Ontario, Alberta, and Saskatchewan so far, and there are about 300 locations carrying the cards.
Fire & Flower is a dispensary company based in Canada that offers retail sales and a digital platform that helps guests keep track of purchases and take advantage of special deals. Now, however, they’ve taken it one step further by entering into the world of gift cards, an avenue that before now has been pretty much off the table when it comes to legal cannabis sales.
“The company’s leadership team combines extensive experience in the cannabis industry with strong capabilities in retail operations,” a press release about Fire & Flower and this latest innovation explained. “The company has set its sights on global expansion as new cannabis markets emerge.”
It seems like the next step in that ongoing expansion is cornering the gift card market for the cannabis industry and changing the way cannabis sales are done in Canada via this innovative, new step, which will certainly influence other dispensaries in the market.
“Fire & Flower gift cards reflect our continued investment in our relationship with our consumers,” said Trevor Fencott, Chief Executive Officer of Fire & Flower. “Each gift card represents a sincere moment of connection between our customers and someone who is close to them. Our commitment to digitally enabled and convenient retail experiences is an important part of our strategy as a tech-enabled, differentiated brand retailer.”
This new marketing avenue is not an accident for the established brand. Market research into Canadian spending habits reveals that more than 70 percent of Canadians are still purchasing gift cards in stores, either retail stores like grocery stores and gas stations, or the specific store where they are shopping. Additionally, customers who use gift cards have been known to spend more than their value; in other words, they spend the card and then keep buying. For all these reasons, expanding into gift card inclusion is a huge move for Fire & Flower and the cannabis industry as a whole.