Quebec’s legislation will initially funnel retail sales through 20 government-run stores and the province expects to have 40 points of sale in March 2020.
There are still opportunities for:
- Micro-cultivation license holders, who could be licensed for the same activities as standard cultivators, but on a smaller scale.
- Nursery license holders, who could be permitted to produce seeds and seedlings, including clones, for sale to other licensed producers and researchers.
- Micro-processing license holders could produce cannabis oil for sale to other LPs and researchers.
- The same license will also allow for packaging and labeling product sales to the public.
The province has major advantages for local cultivators, including low costs for electricity, water, land and highly trained people, as well as Quebecers preference for locally-made goods.
Currently there are six cannabis producers licensed to operate in Quebec; Agri-Médic ASP, Agro-Biotech, Aurora Cannabis Enterprises, Hydropothecary, IsoCanMed, and Vert Cannabis. The province announced these first licensed producers in February of 2018. Though not yet licensed in Quebec, MYM and its subsidiaries are deep in the process of acquiring licensed producer status.
The companies will supply an aggregate of approximately 325,000 kilograms (359 tons) of cannabis over the life of the deals.
The province has by far the lowest number of patient registrations in Canada as a ratio of its population – just 75.8 registrations per 100,000 people. By contrast, Quebec’s recreational market could explode into Canada’s second largest come legalization this summer. Aggregate cannabis consumption in the province in 2019 could fall between 100,000 to 200,000 kilograms, according to a Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) estimate.
Quebec’s cannabis agency generated about $40 million of sales in 2018. When adjusted for the province’s working-age population, Quebec could see annual recreational cannabis sales of around the $150 million in 2019. Estimates of recreational cannabis users in Quebec range from 1 million by the PBO to over 3 million in 2019 based on polling data.