New Brunswick premier Blaine Higgs says that he’s not happy that Cannabis NB has found a way to lose money selling weed.
“We need to look around and get under the hood of the stores,” said Higgs in an interview on Tuesday, adding that his government is looking at what has caused the Crown-owned cannabis retailer to post a financial loss.
“Now I know there’s maybe a bit of an issue on the start-up operations, so I want to understand that,” he said.
Unaudited year-end results released Tuesday show Cannabis NB lost $11.7 million in its first year of operation.
On Tuesday, the company’s general manager said that supply shortages were an issue for the legal cannabis market in 2018.
At one point in November, 12 of the 20 Cannabis NB retail outlets were forced to close for the day due to supply issues.
“Is their value for us to own it? Should we be looking at another model? Because we’re not going to continue to lose $12 million, and that was only in the first six months,” he said.
“The one thing I can assure you is that we’re not going to continue to lose money like this.”
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Higgs remained coy on whether that meant transitioning away from Cannabis NB being the only licensed cannabis retailer.
“The model will change because taxpayers just can’t be on the hook for this,” he said.