Canadian Cannabis Legalization Is Happening—But What Will It Look Like?

Earlier this month, the international consultancy group Deloitte released a new report about the future of the legal cannabis market in Canada. Entitled “Recreational Marijuana: Insights and Opportunities,” the report draws on Deloitte’s deep 2016 study of the Canadian recreational marijuana market, which surveyed 5,000 Canadians aged 19 and up from across the nation. The new report focuses on “key insights on consumption frequency, methods and motivators, the interplay between alcohol and marijuana consumption, and perspectives on retail preference.” Here are six takeaways.

1. The Canadian cannabis market is going to be big—over $7 billion dollars annually. This exceeds Canada’s distilled-spirits market and comes close to what we spend on wine. The alcohol industry is already starting to show signs of adaptation as infusions, partnerships, mergers and acquisitions have begun to make industry headlines.

2. Driven by concerns over quality, price, and safety, Canadians are going to buy from legal sources. The illicit market may be able to compete with the legal marketplace in the price department, but it’ll never achieve a similar level of transparency. Unless cannabis consumers are growing their own, most users have only vague guesses about where their cannabis originates from. In the new legal paradigm, the appeal of knowing where cannabis is grown and who’s doing the growing will offset the added costs of the legal marketplace, according to the survey. Since marketing is likely to be limited, brand loyalty might be based on designations such as “organic,” “sungrown,” and “locally produced.” >>>

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