Top Medical Marijuana News – Weekly Summary – November 18th, 2018

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This week’s cannabis industry news summary provides a closer look at the state of the adult-use recreational market since legalization.

This week, Canada continues to experience severe cannabis supply shortages, another U.S. Cannabis company is set to be traded on Canada’s public market, and more!

Cannabis shortages persist

James Burns, CEO of Alcanna, claimed that although the company wasn’t receiving the entirety of their cannabis orders from the province’s supplier at the start of legalization, they were still receiving a large percentage of it.

Alcanna owns liquor stores in the United States and Canada as well as cannabis stores in Alberta.

There have been persistent cannabis shortages in Canada since recreational cannabis became legal, but Alcanna was still getting a fair share of the cannabis that was available.

Now that there’s barely any cannabis to get a share of, the company, like most others, is in dire straits in terms of supply.

There are cannabis supply shortages all over the country. Stores across Canada are only receiving 20% – 30% of their cannabis orders.

Although a certain amount of supply shortages were expected in the first weeks or months of legalization, no one expected it to be this severe.

It has been said that cannabis suppliers are expected to be able to meet demand by spring 2019.

Are cannabis supply shortages here to stay?

The CEO of Biome Grow, Khurram Malik, believes that delays in licensing, as well as the regulations enforced onto Canada’s 132 licensed producers by Health Canada, could be the primary causes of the national supply shortages.

Being required to adhere to the regulations and meet the standard of cannabis expected from cannabis growers takes time. This has made it extremely difficult for cannabis businesses to meet demand.

Malik also expressed that he thinks cannabis businesses are likely to continue struggling with these complications for the foreseeable future.

Police say legalization did not lead to an increase in people driving stoned

Canada’s law enforcement officials have not observed an increase in pot-impaired driving since adult-use recreational cannabis became legal.

What the police have observed, though, is a need for more awareness on regulations surrounding cannabis storage in vehicles as well as passengers consuming cannabis in vehicles.

The police force was surveyed by The Canadian Press on cannabis issues since legalization.

Some officials believed it to be too soon to provide valid data on the subject., but the officials that did share their thoughts on the subject observed no increase in cannabis-induced driving since legalization.

Divided poll results on Canada’s legal age for cannabis purchase and consumption

A poll conducted by Angus Reid institute on the legal age for purchasing and consuming cannabis shows that Canadians are divided when it comes to what the legal age should be.

The legal age for buying and consuming cannabis in Quebec and Alberta is 18 and above. In all other provinces, the legal age is set at 19 and above.

The survey results show that 27% of the population is in accordance with 18 being the legal age for cannabis while 26% believe 21 to be a more suitable age. And 13% believe the legal age for cannabis should be 25 years or older.

A shocking 49% of Canadians believe the legal age for cannabis consumption should be 21 or older.

New Ontario retail license restriction

The Ontario government dictates that corporations will not be issued cannabis retail licenses if 9.9% or more of said corporation is owned by one or multiple licensed cannabis producers.

The Ontario government also specified that the regulation applies independently of whether or not the cannabis producer’s ownership is direct. This is not great news, especially for licensed cannabis producers.

Several licensed cannabis producers that have invested in retail may now be unable to participate in the market. On December 17th, license applications will commence. Retail stores are anticipated to open in the spring.

Another United States Cannabis firm goes public

Acreage Holdings, a cannabis firm with over 40 dispensaries in the United States, is setting itself up for success by being the most recent U.S. pot firm to go public in Canada.

Kevin Murphy, previously a banker on Wall Street, runs Acreage Holdings. The firm’s shares will begin public trading this Thursday.

The firm entered the Canadian public markets via entering into a reverse takeover with Applied Inventions Management.

Acreage Holdings is supported by John Boehner, former House speaker, and has an adviser in Brian Mulroney, a former Canadian Prime Minister.

Acreage Holdings will now be among three large U.S. Cannabis Companies that are traded in Canada’s public markets. These companies include:

  1. Green Thumb Industries
  2. Curaleaf
  3. MedMen

Due to midterm election results, cannabis laws have eased in some states and there’s been a more positive outlook surrounding the likelihood of cannabis prohibition ending in the United States.

This week’s news definitely illustrates the highly competitive and tricky nature of the cannabis industry. Tune in next week to stay in the know. Till then!

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