Canada Made Some Serious Cash on Day One Of Weed Legalization

One province sold a dollar of cannabis per each citizen within their borders.
Mack Lamoureux
Toronto, CA
October 19, 2018, 5:58pm
A packed cannabis store in Manitoba.
Photo via John Woods/Canadian Press.

Legalization day has come and gone in Canada, we’ve done the countdown, dropped the big nugget, made the historic first sale, and realized ‘oh shit, we might not have enough weed.’

We, as in our government and legal weed vendors, also made a shit load of cash.

Provinces and territories across the country are reporting what they raked in on legalization and *impressed whistle.* Now we don’t have the exact numbers for every province and it must be noted that not every province utilizes the same sales model—some preferring a private model over a public one and vice versa. Others—like Ontario, New Brunswick, and Saskatchewan—have decided not to make their numbers public at this time. Most though, like your first friend to get an OK paying job, have decided to brag about how much they’re making.

This is just going to be on the raw numbers but if you want an in-depth breakdown of how cannabis shops make cash in Canada, may I suggest the below?

Let’s start in the Maritimes where Nova Scotia, whose pot stores are publically run, took in a sweet 12,810 sales on the first day alone, according to CTV. This translated into $660,000. According to Cannabis PEI, Canada’s smallest province was able to bring in $152,408.35 from a combination of their online and IRL stores. To understand how much that is per potion well here’s a fun little tidbit for you. As of September 2018, PEI has 153,244 people.

So, essentially, PEI sold a buck of pot for every citizen they have on their island. Good job, lil’ guy!


In Newfoundland and Labrador, where the first legal sale in Canada took place, revenue data wasn’t available but they were leading the country in shortages and our politics writer Drew Brown lives there so you better believe they’re doing well.

Quebecers apparently went crazy for the legal weed and flooded both the online and brick and mortar stores. The SQDC, Quebec’s cannabis retailer, said on Thursday that there were 42,500 sales so far in the province but wouldn’t release a hard dollar amount. Thankfully, the good people at MTL Blog—using the average price of products, what they saw consumers buying, and sale numbers—made an estimate about what the province could have made.

“The SQDC could have made as much as $1,381,250 in cannabis sales yesterday,” reads their estimate. “That number is probably much, much higher, however. The agency may have made as much as $3,187,500.”

Alberta—who only runs the online stores in their province—got their sales hat on and, according to CTV , were able to get about 8,300 sales. From the sales, they took in a cool $730,000—nice work home province! Now BC only released their sales numbers, not the profit they got from it. But in total, the weed province made about 10,000 sales—the majority of which were online because they dropped the ball in regards to IRL stores. So, for the eagle-eyed readers, you’ll notice this sale is slightly higher to what Alberta did so you can draw your own conclusions there.


Now it’s a little hard to figure out what Manitoba, who took a very private market approach to legalization, made in total but some stores made a fucking killing. One store in Winnipeg brought in $325,000 by itself on legalization day so…. that bodes well.

In terms of the territories, well, they did well. Weed was so popular in the Northwest Territories that the store in Yellowknife sold out twice but the territory hasn’t released an official number as of yet. Data from the buggy online store offered by Nunavut, who joins Ontario in having no physical stores, was not available at the time of writing but it sold out quick. In the Yukon, which has a population of about 36,000, sold about $59,000 worth of the good stuff between their online and one physical store.

All and all, Canada didn’t do too shabby for day one, eh?

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