The CCSI was assessed at C$5.17 per gram this week, up 0.7% from last week’s C$5.13 per gram. This week’s price equates to US$1,844 per pound at the current exchange rate.
This week Cannabis Benchmarks analyzes data collected by Health Canada regarding trends in cannabis usage in the country. The agency conducts an annual Canadian Cannabis Survey to obtain “detailed information about the habits of people who use cannabis and behaviors relative to cannabis use.” While there is a plethora of data collected, in this week’s report we focus on a few high-level trends in cannabis usage and sources of cannabis.
Cannabis Benchmarks begin by looking at the trends in Canada’s cannabis usage rate since 2018. In all categories, cannabis usage rose from 2018 through 2020, with a small drop in 2021. The drop-off in usage for 2021 can likely be explained by anomalously elevated usage in 2020, when stay-at-home orders during the initial surge of the COVID pandemic were in place, resulting in more free time and disposable income for consumers. At the national level, approximately 25% of the population used cannabis in 2021, down from 27% the year prior.
The next trends examined are the factors that influenced where consumers sourced their cannabis over the past three years. What is apparent from the data, shown in the accompanying chart, is that cannabis users are most sensitive to price and safe supply, followed by quality and convenience.
Lastly, Cannabis Benchmarks looked at some trends in the medical cannabis market. While survey respondents could choose more than one source, the data clearly indicates that legal outlets – including licensed recreational storefronts and online options, as well as Health Canada licensed medical cannabis producers – are preferred to unlicensed sources. As seen over the past three years, there is an increasing trend to purchase cannabis from a legal, recreational source (online or storefront) and a negative trend to acquiring it from a dealer, friend, or illegal online source.
The increasing preference for legal recreational sources also came at the expense of cultivators licensed in the country’s medical cannabis program, which saw the proportion of survey respondents selecting that category as a preferred source wane from 2020 to 2021. It appears medical cannabis users increasingly prefer the convenience and product variety found in the legal recreational markets. Our modeling of demand for recreational versus medical cannabis affirms the survey findings, with total kilograms sold in the medical market consistently constituting only a small fraction of the volume sold in the recreational market.
See previous weekly updates from Cannabis Benchmarks:
- Daily cannabis spend per consumer in BC now
- Canadian retail store counts right now
- A look at average daily cannabis sales in Canada
- Future growth of cannabis retail in Alberta
- Retail store counts in Canada right now
- The mix of cannabis products in Ontario right now
- How to understand legal and illicit cannabis sales
- Comparing legal and illicit cannabis purchases right now
- A look at cannabis retail store counts in Canada
- A look at daily cannabis retail sales in Canada
- Legacy and legal cannabis sales three years after legalization?
- How to understand cannabis’ impact on alcohol sales in Canada
- Understanding cannabis retail store growth in Canada
- A look at average monthly spend per cannabis consumer
- A look at processing licenses issued by Health Canada
- A look at cultivation licenses issued by Health Canada
- Understanding medical versus recreational sales right now
- A look at daily cannabis sales by Province
- How to view dry cannabis sales across Canada
- A look at percentage of legal versus illicit cannabis sales
- A look at the pace of growth for cannabis retail
- A look at monthly cannabis sales in Ontario
- What is the optimal number of cannabis stores in Canada?
- How to compare daily cannabis retail sales by Province
- Understanding the impact of cannabis on alcohol sales in Canada
- A look at cannabis retail store count by Province
- A look at cannabis user statistics in Canada