Canada struggling to meet huge demands for cannabis weeks after legalization

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Most stores in Canada are struggling to meet the demand for cannabis, two weeks after the Canadian government approved of it for recreational use.

Both physical and digital stores have reportedly not been able to meet the demand in many parts of the country.

“There is not enough legal marijuana to supply all of recreational demand in Canada,” the Guardian quoted Rosalie Wyonch, a policy analyst with the CD Howe Institute.

“The shortages are happening faster than I would have expected, but our research suggested quite strongly that there would be shortages in the first year of legalization.”

The shortage is traced to a mix of regulatory frameworks, retail chain distribution and logistical kinks – including rolling postal strikes across the country.

Most residents are made to get the products through a government-run website, and in the first day of legalisation, the Ontario cannabis store had processed 100,000 orders and had only been able to supply a few.

“The most frustrating part to me is that the government forced a monopoly on both the supply and delivery on cannabis products, then failed to deliver,” Curtis Baller, a university student, told the Guardian.

Over a thousand complaints had been made over the demand and supply since October 17, 2018 when it got legalised. Wyonch, however, said the government is still licensing producers, and existing producers are expanding facilities.

“It takes a certain amount of time to grow, process and package, ship and get tested,” she said.

She added that it took Colorado three years to meet up with demand when it legalised recreational cannabis, noting that Canada should expect similar experiences.

If the shortage persists, there is fear that this might push many off the legal market, encouraging the black market.

“Now that we can’t supply them, they’re still going to find it,” Trevor Tobin, a retailer said. “There’s no shortage of weed in Labrador City. Just the legal stuff.”

In August, Omoyele Sowore, a presidential candidate in Nigeria, had promised to make the country a major exporter of the product if elected into office.

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