ARMSTRONG and MYRAN: The pandemic had little impact on Canada’s legal cannabis sale

Michael Armstrong, Associate Professor of Operations Research at Brock University, and Daniel Myran, Public Health Physician and Canadian Institutes of Health Research Fellow at the University of Ottawa, had a piece recently published in The Conversation about growth in Canada’s legal cannabis industry being related to an increase in stores and products.

They write:

“The pandemic saw a boom in legal recreational cannabis sales across Canada. From March 2020 to February 2021, sales totaled $2.5 billion, double the $1.25 billion of the previous 12 months. Surveys likewise reported more cannabis users and more frequent usage in 2020 than the year before.

The increases were often blamed, despite a lack of evidence, on the COVID-19 pandemic and related societal disruptions. Many people were stuck alone at home and feeling stressed. Some commentators later walked back their claims after it became clear there was no data to support them, but the narrative still persists. 

Although it’s a compelling anecdote, our new research found that the growth in cannabis sales was more likely from industry expansion, rather than the pandemic.”

Continue reading the full article on The Conversation website.

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