Article by Sam Riches, London Free Press
The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) has announced it will once again be doubling the pace of its cannabis Retail Store Authorizations (RSAs).
In September, the agency vowed to double its approval pace and authorize 40 stores a month. Citing direction from the government, the AGCO now reports it will be issuing 80 RSAs per month.
According to the agency, there are more than 1,100 active applications in the system. AGCO plans to contact retail store applicants over the next two weeks to advise them of the new issuance date of their store authorizations.
“Great to see the AGCO doubling again the retail store authorizations,” George Smitherman, president and CEO of the Cannabis Council of Canada, told The GrowthOpfrom Simcoe County. “Great for the clients like me that have to drive 30 minutes and great for those retailers that have put so much on the line,” Smitherman said.
Just under 300 authorized cannabis stores are now open in the province, placing Ontario behind B.C. and Alberta, which leads the nation with just under 550 pot shops.
Quebec, the second most populous province in the country, has authorized fewer than 50 retail stores.