Canada's Marijuana Gray Market Boom Isn't Going Anywhere

gb123

Well-Known Member
Don Briere was once convicted and sent to prison for running British Columbia's largest network of marijuana grow ops. So on Wednesday, when a Canadian judge ruled that the ban on growing medicinal marijuana at home was unconstitutional, Briere was elated.

"The personal production license people are all dancing in the street right now because they're able to produce quantities, and if they have leftovers they can sell to dispensaries," said the weed entrepreneur, who feeds his more than 20 dispensaries from these "leftovers."

Those small-scale producers, leftovers from a legal system that refuses to die, are effectively feeding a gray zone of medical marijuana dispensaries — that are, the government continually insists, illegal. Police have raided many of those dispensaries, a fact that hasn't changed since Trudeau's election.

Related: Canadians Can Grow Their Own Medical Marijuana, Court Says in Bombshell Ruling

In his ruling, Justice Michael Phelan called dispensaries "the heart of cannabis access," but even with hundreds tolerated in Toronto and British Columbia, they remain illegal and unregulated. And while that's good news for the dark-gray market, the court's finding that the Marijuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (MMPR), crafted by the previous government of Conservative Stephen Harper, was violating Canadians' constitutional rights has put businesses in Canada's government sanctioned-marijuana industry on edge. With no inkling of what regulations will look like, no timeline for when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government will legalize pot, and a pledge from the government to continue prosecuting pot dealers, Canada's legal and illegal marijuana peddlers are competing while stuck in purgatory.

And that purgatory may be fertile soil for the quasi-legal dispensaries.

While patients are allowed to buy their marijuana in the shops, owning and operating a dispensary is legally the same as trafficking marijuana.

Yet cities like Vancouver have tolerated the storefronts, leaving them to multiply rapidly. The most recent legal uncertainty is likely to accelerate that. The more dispensaries exist nation-wide, the more difficult they will be to shut down.

The MMPR regime was designed to end home growing and stamp out dispensaries, instead centralizing the cultivation of cannabis in the hands of a very small number of growers, dubbed Licensed Producers (LPs). When news of Phelan's ruling came down, the LPs' stocks dipped — erasing some of the gains they saw after Trudeau's electoral victory.



Stock price for Canopy Growth Corp following Thursday's ruling. Screenshot of MarketWatch.com.

The value of those legal marijuana companies dropped five to 10 percent across the board, according market analysis. Canopy Growth Corp. — the parent company to Tweed, Canada's first and largest publicly traded pot producer — fell nearly 12 percent from a three-month high, following the ruling.

In a newsletter, Tweed insisted they were "optimistic" about the future.

"The federal court ruled yesterday that certain aspects of the MMPR regulations, the regulations that govern Tweed and all Licensed Producers, do not adequately give patients sufficient access to the medicine we produce," Tweed president Mark Zekulin wrote to clients Thursday. "Today I want to assure you that Tweed isn't going anywhere."

VICE on HBO's look at White Collar Weed airs tonight at 11pm EST. Here's a trailer:

Aaron Salz, who analyzes the marijuana business for Dundee Capital Markets, agrees, that despite uncertainty, Canada's licensed producers are still a good bet. In a report on the business impact of Wednesday's ruling, Salz likened growing your own marijuana to brewing your own beer: a hobby for some, but no competition for the likes of Heineken or Anheuser-Busch.

There are roughly 40,000 registered Canadian marijuana patients — with the right to grow their own stash, although not all do — but no reliable count of dispensaries.

"I don't know that the dispensary is the craft brewer, I think the dispensary is the guy selling moonshine out of his trunk."
Jenna Bobenna, a PhD candidate studying the marijuana industry at the University of Toronto, estimated there could be anywhere between 200 and 300 dispensaries, mostly in Vancouver, Victoria and Toronto. Bobenna agreed that licensed producers are in no danger, but also said that for patients, the dispensaries and growers — who long risked tangling with the law to supply medical marijuana — are an irreplaceable part of the system.

"I think what's going to happen is until we see some kind of legislative change, these dispensaries are going to continue to pop up and it's just going to keep growing," Bobenna said.

The court ruling gives the Liberal government six months to develop new legislation or appeal, before striking the MMPR from the law. On Wednesday, the Liberal's marijuana point man, former Toronto police commissioner Bill Blair, told an open Senate Liberal caucus that there is no set time frame for legalizing weed, and there will be no amnesty for those breaking the law.

Bobenna argued that a moratorium on prosecuting laws that the government intends to change would be a show of good faith from the Liberals. Tweed's president also urged action.

"The government does need to move quickly to set up a regime, because at some point it sort of gets entrenched and people get their education [about marijuana] from people without training," said Zekulin of the extant dispensary system.

Related: Canada's Largest Pharmacy Chain Is Quietly Thinking About Selling Medical Weed

Briere said all the pot his dispensaries sell is carefully examined and claimed the federal court ruling left licensed producers "twisting in the wind." He said he'd be happy to buy from companies like Tweed, if that's how regulation goes, but would rather see something akin to a system of regional microbreweries.Canopy Growth Corp. has a market capitalization of $291 million, but Zekulin bristled at the two-year-old company being compared to big beer brewers.

"I don't know that the dispensary is the craft brewer, I think the dispensary is the guy selling moonshine out of his trunk," he said.
 

CalyxCrusher

Well-Known Member
The government does need to move quickly to set up a regime, because at some point it sort of gets entrenched and people get their education [about marijuana] from people without training," said Zekulin of the extant dispensary system.
LOL, so where did the people he hired get their education? Did Tweed educate them all? That would explain a lot. Listen, they are doing absolutely nothing special, yet he seems to think they have some higher education on cannabis. Which is beyond laughable Mark, you fucking thick headed imbecile. This CULTURE gained all the knowledge and passed it from person to person. You have no magic beanstalk, or silver bullet.

In fact, your company was so scared of competition from the get go that they renamed their product to try and stand out as having something different and "special". News flash, we all have access to the same strains, only, our end result is better because we dont get our info from uneducated people in the cannabis field such as yourself Mark
 

gb123

Well-Known Member
LOL, so where did the people he hired get their education? Did Tweed educate them all? That would explain a lot. Listen, they are doing absolutely nothing special, yet he seems to think they have some higher education on cannabis. Which is beyond laughable Mark, you fucking thick headed imbecile. This CULTURE gained all the knowledge and passed it from person to person. You have no magic beanstalk, or silver bullet.

In fact, your company was so scared of competition from the get go that they renamed their product to try and stand out as having something different and "special". News flash, we all have access to the same strains, only, our end result is better because we dont get our info from uneducated people in the cannabis field such as yourself Mark
(: I guess its pretty funny that over 50 % know better than what he's tryin to spew.
I think it shows exactly who he is and what he is about. There's no hiding that fact.

Karma's a bitch eh dude...:eyesmoke:
specially when someone gives you something, then they try and take it away.
Then tell you, that you don't know what you are doing when it comes to making your own meds...
Then make shit to force upon the ones who need it most and for the most profit? PPPHHHTTT
Who the fuck do they think taught these MOFOS how to do it ALL!!!?

I can guarantee that only a couple people from this site could slay a MMJ industry with what they can grow by comparison...and the knowledge is far greater..regardless of how much school has been taken.

RIU compassion LP
bongsmilie wanna bet it could make the most profit, selling the most meds, for the best prices!!?
 

weedlist

Member
Not surprising the government decided to regulate the sale of weed. I've always thought they would in the even it would be legalized. At the very least have dispensaries apply for licenses or be approved as sellers. If you want to buy weed in canada it shouldn't be during government hours only or you'll still have others selling.
 

cannadan

Well-Known Member
won by default....since all the planning/scheming was so one sided...that the only one who can lose is the government...
they have no one to blame but those insiders who tried to stack the deck in their own favor....man is it going to sting hard on the other end of things,,,
 

growforyou

Member
thanks cannadan.......I used to be a member here a while ago, but it looks like my account got lost

good looking husky, I have one that looks just like it

around my area the demand and price for black and gray market has dropped significantly over the last year
 

cannadan

Well-Known Member
Thanks GFY -we like her..very very smart dog too...

Ya I would agree...you can feel it in the air,,,more people growing and a market about to become absolutely saturated...so the price will bottom out.
the grey market guys in this last year or so...gave people a taste of what B.C. dispensaries would be like..and people seemed to like that model
quite a bit from what I witnessed on the two or 3 visits I made to one.
Of course the Ont Government seems to think they know better and choose a closed market to a free and open one.(stupid in my opinion)
 

growforyou

Member
"Penalties for corporations that continue to sell cannabis illegally will range from $25,000 to $1 million. Individuals caught distributing cannabis illegally – i.e. street dealers – could face fines of up to $250,000 and/or jail of up to two years less a day. This same penalty structure will apply to landlords who knowingly permit illegal cannabis sales on their properties"
 

VIANARCHRIS

Well-Known Member
"Penalties for corporations that continue to sell cannabis illegally will range from $25,000 to $1 million. Individuals caught distributing cannabis illegally – i.e. street dealers – could face fines of up to $250,000 and/or jail of up to two years less a day. This same penalty structure will apply to landlords who knowingly permit illegal cannabis sales on their properties"
It's already being challenged before it becomes law. If it don't pass the sniff test at SCoC, and it won't, they will be forced to open the market up. My concern is with growers (suppliers) for the independent guys- right now the feds control the licensing of growers, so even if the dispensaries win the right to sell, they will be forced to sell LP shit. The small gray/black market growers who want to go legit should have an opportunity to supply dispensaries.
 

OLD MOTHER SATIVA

Well-Known Member
i wish i wish, vianna..because dealing with hc will drive one crazy and broke [from experience]

it needs to be taken out of the hands of hc because they hate cannabis..

and while we are here..is that right they do not wanna let anyone grow outdoors now?

for me this is after the fact because i think gov will put the kybosh on anyone growing and push it down the road
 

gb123

Well-Known Member
They are going to try and force D's to sell their Shwags..
WANNA BET
and we all know how that will go too. 8-)
Oh...sure we will take your poison....
and if it doesn't sell. :cool: TAKE IT BACK! ........ and give us something that WILL SELL.!:spew:
Cant do that? then sit on the shelf and go no where but....... the trash can!.. :-P

YA BOYEEE(:
 

cannadan

Well-Known Member
how does the government expect to run a business...that has zero returns...zero bad product....zero spoiled product...zero poisoned products
zero deemed inferior product...zero zero priced products.... and zero experimental strain or product...
all of these things produce an environment....a business environment ....that in order to function ,will require them to eat a substantial percentage
of their yearly purchases and have a system in place, by where, the customer has a chance of at least returning destroyed or out of date produce
for a refund.
I'm not sure how they expected this to work since there are no allotments being made in the rules...
like going into business with blinders to everything"but profit" on....
 
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