We’re Two Weeks Into National Cannabis Legalization. Where’s The Pot?

Article by Dave Ebner and Marcy Nicholson, Globe and Mail

We’re two weeks into national cannabis legalization. Where’s the pot? DAVID EBNER AND MARCY NICHOLSON Jimmy's Cannabis store in Martensville, Sask. on Oct. 31, 2018. DAVID STOBBE/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

On the Alberta Cannabis website, the most common phrase is “out of stock” – stamped on more than four of five products listed. For CannabisNL, it’s worse, with about six of seven items on display listed as “coming soon.”
In Saskatchewan, the supply crunch has squeezed Jimmy’s Cannabis, a private retailer that buys directly from licensed cannabis producers. The Jimmy’s in Martensville opened on Oct. 17 and ran out of cannabis the next day. The company’s Battleford location has managed to stay open.
“We’ve had multiple orders that haven’t come through,” said David Thomas, co-owner of Jimmy’s. “I don’t see a quick fix.”
Welcome to the early days of legal cannabis in Canada, where, two weeks into the new market, the widespread predictions of supply challenges have come to fruition. Governments have been surprised by the demand. The online Ontario Cannabis Store has called it “unbelievably high” and now has roughly a third of what it was selling on the first day of legalization. Producers that have never grown cannabis at this scale cannot deliver what they promised. Ottawa’s approval process has also been slow. Meanwhile, investors have grown skeptical, and share prices of cannabis growers have plummeted.
But cannabis companies insist they will make good on their commitments as legalization unfolds. Canopy Growth Corp., the leading grower, said its licensed capacity to grow and sell cannabis at the end of the year will be double that of the end of summer. Canopy said it will meet all of its orders over the course of the first year of legal cannabis.

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