Statistics Canada survey finds legal marijuana more expensive than black market pot

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Cannabis supply shortage impacting prices – Apr 11, 2019

Statistics Canada’s 2019 first-quarter crowd-sourced cannabis prices survey found legally purchased pot is expensive.

Nationally, the average is 56.8 per cent higher than buying pot illegally.

Jenna Brant is a medical marijuana user.

She was surprised at the prices at the two new cannabis stores that opened in Kingston this month.

“I only pay $7, $8 a gram. So to come here and it be $14 for one gram that’s crazy.”

READ MORE: B.C. saw lowest average weed price hike in Canada after legalization: StatCan

Nick Pateras is the V.P. of Strategy at Lift & Co. and says legal marijuana sellers like his company have expenses the black market doesn’t.

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“For example, having products tested, having it adhere to certain quality standards, quality control standards,” he said.

A shortage of legal cannabis is also affecting prices as well, says Pateras.

“As more supply comes online [and] more product comes available, we’ll see natural price compression as we’ve seen in all the U.S. states.”

READ MORE: Here’s how much cannabis costs across Canada

Until that correction occurs, Brant says she’ll continue to buy elsewhere.

“The reserve and stuff like that, that’s a huge market already there, they have close to 200 stores. [They] are not regulated but sorry, that’s where I’m going to go.”

Statistics Canada’s survey makes a key point about analyzing data in the report highlighting the number of responses in some parts of the country is small and there may be statistical bias.

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