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Ontario made $520M from pot last year. So why do retailers say they're struggling?

business thinking

Ontario Cannabis Stores, the province's pot supplier, charges a 31% mark-up to retailers.

The province of Ontario made more than a half a billion dollars from the cannabis industry in the last fiscal year, according to public accounts released by the government on Friday.

But that $520 million is coming at least partially at the expense of struggling local retailers, according to Michael Armstrong, a business professor at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ont.

"About 56 cents of every dollar you spend at a cannabis store goes to the businesses, the retailers and producers," Armstrong told CBC Toronto.

"The other 44 cents is going to government in one way or another," he added.


Feds to look at public-health impact of Cannabis Legalization in mandated review

OTTAWA - Federal ministers are expected to launch a long-awaited review of the government’s cannabis legislation today.

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The Liberals lifted a century-long prohibition on the recreational use and sale of cannabis in October 2018, with the provision that they review the law three years after to comes into force.

That review is nearly one year overdue.

The legislation dictates that the federal government must investigate the impact of legalization on public health, youth consumption and Indigenous persons and communities.


Toronto is getting the World's first Cannabis Store in a major Transportation Hub


Toronto will soon be home to the world’s first cannabis store in a major transportation hub.

Marking a “significant industry milestone,” FIKA is set to open a new flagship location inside Union Station in September.

Located in the Bay Street Promenade, FIKA joins retailers like Sephora in the newly-renovated space.

With the storefront, FIKA’s famed elevated approach to cannabis will be available to over 75,000 local residents and more than 300,000 daily commuters.

“Shopping in a FIKA is unlike any other cannabis store in North America. Our uncompromising approach to service and design makes the experience effortless and enjoyable for anyone – from the novice to the most seasoned cannabis shopper,” said Christopher Kane, COO at FIKA.


Ontario Cannabis Store unable to make deliveries after Partner faces Cyberattack

cyber attack

TORONTO — The Ontario Cannabis Store says a cyberattack faced by one of its logistics partners has left the provincial pot distributor unable to process or deliver orders to marijuana shops and customers.

The OCS said Monday evening there is no indication that its systems were targeted or its customers’ information compromised during the Aug. 5 attack on the parent company of its third-party distribution centre, Domain Logistics. “However, out of an abundance of caution to protect OCS and its customers, the decision was made to shut down Domain Logistics’ operations until a full forensic investigation could be completed,” the OCS said in a statement.


Grimsby looks to allow cannabis growing while reducing odour

weed plant

While many in Grimsby were hoping to avoid allowing cannabis to be grown in the town at all, the municipality has started the process to allow for medical and commercial growth.

At a committee of the whole meeting on Aug. 2, council heard from consultants with SGL Planning and Design Inc. who were hired to do a land use study for cannabis growth operations in the town. These same consultants held a public meeting in June, where they heard concerns from residents and councillors.

As it stands, the town’s official plan makes no reference to cannabis. The study recommends the town allow commercial cannabis production licensed by Health Canada, and designated medical growth in areas zoned for specialty crops.


Cannabis tourism yet to catch on in Toronto despite pot shops, Cannabis Carnival

woman getting massage

Even though pot shops are seemingly on every corner of the city and despite the opening of a nice space to light one up at Exhibition Place, cannabis tourism is not yet much of a thing in Toronto.

Though Toronto has gone from just 12 legal cannabis shops at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic to close to 500 now, according to a recent New York Times story, and though it’s true that there are things like personalized tours and cooking classes themed around marijuana for eager tourists who favour bud, these aren’t exactly high times, according to those in the know.

Destination Toronto told the Sun that they’ve only received a couple of inquires in the past four years about cannabis tourism in Toronto.


Ontario police seize cannabis worth $61 million


Estimated 45,000-plus illegal pot plants and eight metric tonnes of processed weed confiscated.

The Provincial Joint Forces Cannabis Enforcement Team (PJFCET), led by the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), seized $61 million in cannabis, equipment and property during searches of two greenhouse sites and two residences.


Uber enters booming cannabis market with orders in Ontario

cannabis plant

Uber Technologies Inc (UBER.N) will allow users in Ontario, Canada, to place orders for cannabis on its Uber Eats app, marking the ride-hailing giant's foray into the booming business, a company spokesperson said on Monday.

Uber Eats will list cannabis retailer Tokyo Smoke on its marketplace on Monday, following which customers can place orders from the Uber Eats app and then pick it up at their nearest Tokyo Smoke store, the spokesperson said.


Ontario police call for public’s help in identifying bud burglar

police siren

Ontario’s Durham Region Police Service (DRPS) is still on the hunt for the sticky-fingered thief who absconded with cannabis products last month. The DRPS is hoping the public can provide a helpful assist in identifying the culprit.

The police released several images of the bandit this week. The as-yet-unidentified suspect was captured, at least on security footage, breaking and entering into Northern Helm Cannabis on Oct. 12 notes a police statement.

 Rolling up on what the police describe as “a little red BMX bike,” the thief broke into the shop in Courtice, Ont. at around 3 a.m. after throwing a rock through the storefront window.

Slipping into the store, the man described as thin and in his 20s made off with “numerous items,” the police say.


Pipp Horticulture Acquires the GGS Group of Companies

pip horticulture systems
Pipp Horticulture (a division of Pipp Mobile Storage Systems, Inc.) (“Pipp”), the leading provider of space‐saving, multi‐level mobile cultivation systems, announced today that it has acquired the GGS Group of Companies (“GGS”). Based in Vineland, Ontario, GGS is one of the most recognized names in the Horticulture industry. They have been the leading manufacturer of top quality greenhouses and turnkey greenhouse growing solutions including traditional rolling benches, heating and ventilation systems, and curtain systems.


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